I thought it would be close. It wasn’t.
In a sign that former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has lots of work to do with conservatives if he wants the Republican nomination for president, ex-Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney won 92 percent of the vote compared to Bush’s 8 percent in a White House Dossier poll asking the website’s mostly conservative readers whom they would prefer if the choice came down to Bush or Romney.
Some reporting has suggested that Bush’s recent signals he is getting in the race might mean Romney will have to stay out. The poll indicates the reverse may be true.
The survey was not strictly scientific. Readers were simply asked to select their choice on the website. The only choices were Bush and Romney, and only one vote per reader was permitted.
Nevertheless, the overwhelming victory for Romney indicates he must have a much stronger position with conservatives, no matter the methodology of the poll.
If the comments are any guide, many WHD readers disdained the choice between the two relatively moderate Republicans. Fifty six percent of those who answered the poll described themselves as conservative and 26 percent chose “very conservative,” with only 10 percent saying they are moderates and another seven percent choosing “other.” Many in the last group described themselves as libertarian.
Bush has drawn the suspicion of conservatives, chiefly through his support for immigration reform and the common core education standards. Conservatives may also be wary of putting another Bush in office. Romney, while not particularly well liked either by conservatives, may be viewed as having less baggage, despite his introduction of Romneycare in Massachusetts.
The poll was conducted from 12:30 pm Saturday, December 20 until 5:30 pm Sunday, December 21. Readers were asked, “If you had to choose one of these candidates for president, whom would you choose?” A total of 590 people voted, with 541 selecting Romney and 49 choosing Bush.