Poll: Mitt Romney trails Texas Gov. Rick Perry by 12 percentage points

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 24 2011 3:16 p.m. MDT

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann, greet supporters during a campaign stop at Hires Big H on 700 East and 400 South in Salt Lake City on June 24.

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According to a new Gallup poll released today, Texas Gov. Rick Perry leads the GOP presidential pack by double digits.

Of the 1,040 Republicans surveyed, 29 percent indicated that they would support Rick Perry — with only 17 percent choosing Mitt Romney. Ron Paul finished third with 13 percent and Michele Bachmann held unto 10 percent. Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman Jr. netted 1 percent.

"Perry's emergence as the leader in the Gallup Poll after only days of campaigning shows the potential vulnerability of Romney's 'frontrunner' status," said ABC News' The Note.

With a new formidable challenger in the race, pundits are saying that Romney will have to change his current campaign strategy.

"Perry's significant lead also suggests that Romney can no longer run a GOP front-runner's campaign, looking past his intraparty rivals, striking a pose as his party's inevitable nominee by framing the race as one between himself and President Obama," said NPR's Frank James. "Romney's campaign is likely now entering a phase where he will need to persuade Republican voters that he's more electable than Perry. That likely means Romney will need to point out Perry's flaws, a tack that would likely see the Texas governor responding in kind."

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