The future of Rick Perry's presidential campaign hinges on his showing in the Palmetto state, but two new polls show predict he will snag only five percent of the vote in the January 21 South Carolina primary.
The Rasmussen telephone poll of likely Republican primary voters in South Carolina, conducted Thursday, puts Mitt Romney in the lead with 27 percent of the vote, followed by Newt Gingrich with eighteen percent, Ron Paul with eleven percent, and Jon Huntsman with two percent.
The new CNN/Time poll, released Friday, puts Romney firmly in the lead with 37 percent of the vote. Santorum and Gingrich had nineteen and eighteen percent, respectively. Twelve percent of voters polled supported Paul and one percent backed Huntsman.
And an American Research Group poll puts Perry's support even lower, at two percent, rendering him irrelevant. "Perry is not a factor," said American Research Group president Dick Bennett. Perry's fifth-place finish in Iowa has hurt him in South Carolina, and not even his neon laces look like they can resurrect his campaign now. "South Carolina is Rick Perry’s must-win state. If Iowa was his Omaha Beach, this is his Alamo," the Houston Chronicle 's Richard Dunham declared on the paper's Perry Presidential blog.
Perry is currently in Texas, according to Jason Embry, but he will be appearing in two debates this weekend (one on ABC Saturday at 8 p.m. and the other Sunday morning on Meet the Press ):
The debates are obviously important for Perry, not because of New Hampshire, but because they give him a chance to reach voters in South Carolina and elsewhere. Still, make no mistake. The Perry campaign is on life support.