Why did former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney lose the 2012 presidential contest to President Obama? New Hampshire Republicans say he was too nice and couldn’t connect with voters.
That’s according to a new Suffolk University poll that also asked about the potential candidates in next year’s GOP presidential primary.
The leading answer on Romney’s defeat, with 13 percent, was that Romney was “too nice.” This was followed by voters who said Romney “couldn’t connect with people” (9 percent) and that he “ran a poor campaign” (also 9 percent). Only 1 percent blamed Romney’s disparaging remark about the “47 percent” of Americans who don’t pay taxes.
The survey of 500 likely Republican New Hampshire presidential primary voters found that former Florida governor Jeb Bush is leading Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker 19 percent to 14 percent, just slightly beyond the poll’s 4.4 percent margin of error, in the 2016 contest. Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky, who had led some New Hampshire polls, is at 7 percent, and New York businessman Donald Trump is at 6 percent.
The plurality of those surveyed, 24 percent, said they were undecided.James Pindell can be reached at James.Pindell@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @jamespindell.