Newt Gingrich has edged out much of the competition and is tied with Mitt Romney for second place behind Herman Cain in the 2012 GOP presidential race, according to a new poll released today by CBS News.
Cain had lost some support over allegations of sexual harassment by four women, but he still clings to the top spot with 18 percent support, according to the poll. Romney, who has also slightly declined in support from earlier polling, received 15 percent support, tying him with an emergent Gingrich.
The poll, conducted from Nov. 6-10 surveyed 1,029 registered voters nationwide and 382 voters who said they plan on voting in a Republican primary.
The survey shows declining support for Cain among women and some conservatives. In a CBS News poll taken in late October, Cain was the top Republican for women, with 28 percent support. In the most recent poll, that had dropped to just 15 percent.
Gingrich's rise is buoyed in part by increased support from voters who identify with the Tea Party movement, showing an increase of eight points over the previous CBS News poll. Cain's support has dropped from 32 percent to 19 percent in that group, according to CBS News.
Gingrich, the former House Speaker, has turned in solid debate performances, often lecturing on policy and chastising moderators for their questions. His penchant for weaving historical references into his responses and criticizing the media have been well received by Tea Party conservatives—a group that has been groping to find a champion in the 2012 race. First Rep. Michele Bachmann was a favorite, then Texas Gov. Rick Perry and finally Cain, but his appeal appears to have peaked with the group as well.
The former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has long been seen as too moderate by the conservative wing of the party. The CBS News poll shows his support among men has also dropped some.
The poll is one of the first taken after the first of the four women, Sharon Bialek, held a press conference detailing her allegations against Cain. The incident allegedly occurred in 1997, while Cain was president of the National Restaurant Association and Bialek was seeking employment. The Cain campaign has reacted to the charges by denying their veracity and attack Bialek's character, accusing her of trying to profit by lying about Cain.