TRENDING: Another poll shows Perry falling, Cain rising
By: CNN's Kevin Liptak
Washington (CNN) - A second national poll indicates a dramatic decline in voter support for Texas Gov. Rick Perry following a shaky debate performance and questions about his stance on social security and immigration.
According to a Washington Post/ABC News survey released Tuesday, 16% of likely Republican voters back Perry, a virtual tie with Godfather's Pizza executive Herman Cain. Both men trail former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, who stands at 25%.
The last time Washington Post/ABC News asked likely Republican voters for their pick, Perry stood at 29%. The thirteen-point drop comes after a rough week for Perry, including rough reviews after a Republican presidential debate in which he said his fellow candidates "had no hearts" for disagreeing with him on a controversial immigration law.
Last week, Fox News released a poll showing a similar decline for Perry and comparable increase for Cain. In that survey, 19% of likely GOP voters backed Perry, while 17% backed Cain.
Cain's jump in national polls follows a surprise win at a closely-watched Florida straw poll, where he upset Perry, who was considered the favorite to win the much watched straw poll of GOP activists. Since then Cain has been in the media spotlight, thanks to a flurry of media appearances.
The Washington Post/ABC News Poll also asked Republicans if they thought New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin should enter the race. Forty-two percent said Christie should jump in, while only 31% said Palin should make a bid. When responding to the same question, 34% said Christie should not enter the race, and 66% said they didn't think Palin should get in.
CNN confirmed Tuesday that Christie will not enter the 2012 race. He will make that announcement at 1 p.m. ET at a news conference in Trenton.
When included with the other candidates, 10% of likely GOP voters backed Christie, putting him eleven points behind Romney (21%) and four points behind Perry and Cain (both at 14%). Nine percent backed Palin.
The Washington Post/ABC News poll surveyed 1,002 adults by telephone from September 29-October 2. The sampling error was plus or minus four percentage points.