By Becky Hogan
At the # 7 spot in the TrendPo Rankings, Rick Perry has been receiving a lot of online buzz after he recently announced that he won’t be running for re-election in 2014.
He’s also the longest-serving governor in Texas’ history and his announcement has left many speculating that a 2016 run is very much in Perry’s future.
But according to a new poll, freshman Senator Ted Cruz is the favorite in his home state of Texas for Republicans in 2016.
Cruz led all potential candidates for the 2016 GOP primary by at least 12 percentage points, picking up 27 percent of the support of those surveyed. Perry was rated second to last in the poll with 7 percent supporting him.
Interestingly, we looked at both Republicans social media gains since January to see who has had the most momentum in 2013. The social media variables confirm what that polls are showing.
While Perry has larger social media followings overall (probably since he’s been in office longer), Cruz has gained more Likes and Followers in the past 6 months. He is also more talked about on Facebook than the Texas governor.
What’s interesting about their divide in the polls is that their stances on a lot of hot-button issues like immigration, guns, and abortion are nearly identical.
Perry has been getting a lot of news mentions lately for defending Texas’ abortion bill after Wendy Davis’ filibuster. Meanwhile, Cruz has been in the spotlight for his attack on Obama’s gun policy and for his fierce criticism of the Senate immigration bill.
Part of Cruz’s growing popularity could be due to the fact that he engages voters more directly on social media. He tweets an average of 3 times per day versus Perry’s one tweet per day.
When the IRS scandals broke this spring, Cruz was quick to act upon the outrage that erupted immediately—especially on his Twitter account.
All that being said, Perry has been in the top ten rankings this week far ahead of Cruz.
Three of the last 10 US presidents have been Texans, will Perry or Cruz be the fourth?
Check back here to see how other GOP hopefuls are garnering online buzz.
Photo Source: Politico.com