Gingrich trouncing Romney among Fox watchers

Caucus Blog, NY Times:
If there were a Fox News primary, Mitt Romney would be losing it.
Among Republican voters in Iowa, nearly 40 percent say they get most of their news from the network and its many conservative hosts, according tothe most recent New York Times poll. And among those viewers, Newt Gingrich, the former House speaker, is trouncing Mr. Romney.
Nearly half of the Fox News watchers said they would vote for Mr. Gingrich if the state’s Republican presidential caucus were held today. Just 12 percent of the regular Fox watchers said that Mr. Romney, the former governor of Massachusetts, is their choice to be the Republican standard-bearer.
The gap between the two men among Fox watchers is nearly twice as large as it is among likely Republican caucusgoers in Iowa. Mr. Gingrich — who was a Fox News analyst before beginning his presidential campaign — leads Mr. Romney 31 to 18 percent among Republican voters in the state over all, the poll found.
Mr. Romney appears regularly on Fox. In an interview Tuesday afternoon with Fox’s Neil Cavuto, Mr. Romney acknowledged the importance of the network and its influence in the Republican presidential process.
“I’ll be on Fox a lot because you guys matter when it comes to Republican primary voters,” Mr. Romney said.
But the results of the poll in Iowa are the latest evidence of a less-than-perfect relationship between Mr. Romney and the network that many conservatives view as their primary source for political information.
At the end of October, Chris Wallace, the host of “Fox News Sunday,” called out Mr. Romney as the only major Republican candidate who had not agreed to sit for an interview on his weekly show.
I think Romney is paying a price for his strategy of avoiding interviews in general and not just on Fox.  Other candidates who were less well funded jumped at the chance to get on Fox and get their message out.  I do not perceive an anti Romney bias on the network, so much as a missed opportunity by Romney.

When a candidate avoids contact with a media outlet, they tend to try to get their tougher questions answered in the few opportunities they get.  That is what happened in the Bret Baier interview.  The questions asked by Baier were ones that seemed obvious to me based on what his opponents have been saying, including the DNC.


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