Ron Paul surges in Iowa

US Republican presidential hopeful Rep. Ron Paul of Texas, speaks November 16, 2011 during a healthcare event on Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. (AFP Photo / Karen Bleier)
The results of a handful of new polls released this week confirm what many Republican voters have been saying all along: Ron Paul could capture the party’s bid in the race for the White House in 2012.

A survey conducted by The Des Moines Register of likely Republican voters in the state of Iowa has put Texas Congressman Ron Paul in second place among the candidates, closely trailing former House Speaker Newt Gingrich.

In the paper’s poll, Paul has passed former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, who has been considered the frontrunner by many in the GOP bid since he threw his hat in the race.

According to the Register, Paul’s growing popularity has caught the attention of 18 percent of likely voters, dwarfing former top tier candidates Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry, who received 8 percent and 6 percent, respectively. Additionally, Paul has surged seven percentage points since the paper last conducted a poll in October.

The Register’s poll comes from data collected by Des Moines’ Selzer & Co during the last week of November.

Further, recent surveys by way of NBC News and Bloomberg News show similar standing of Paul who has seen an increase in popularity in recent weeks. Strategists for the congressman have said that per performance on the part of Rick Perry in recent debates has allowed for Paul to recapture support from would-be voters of the Texas governor who have since abandoned their backing.

Herman Cain’s drop from the race on Saturday of course will also leave a fair share of former supporters of the ex-pizzaman to find a new candidate of choice. The NBC poll places Paul at second place with 17 percent of the vote, and Bloomberg’s from a month earlier put the congressman only one percentage point behind Cain.

“I think we continue to do what we’re doing,” Paul told CNN during a sit-down over the weekend. “We’ve had the flavors of the month up and down so far in this campaign. I’d like to think of myself as the flavor of the decade.”

While the results of the caucuses in Iowa next month stand to influence the way the rest of the 2012 election cycle goes about, Paul supporters are rampant across the country. In both Iowa and across the country in New Hampshire, around 500 college students will go door-to-door to campaign for the congressman this holiday season as part of an initiative called “Christmas Vacation with Ron Paul.”