Bachmann With Narrow Lead if Palin Doesn’t Run

The caveat, once again: national polls don’t prove much at this stage of a campaign. Okay. With that out of the way, the new Public Policy Polling survey gives us yet more evidence of a Bachmann surge, one that suggests she’s a co-frontrunner, in pure support terms, with Romney.

The numbers, with trends since June:

Michele Bachmann - 21% (+8)
Mitt Romney - 20% (+0)
Rick Perry - 16% (+16)
Herman Cain - 11% (-1)
Ron Paul - 9% (-2)
Newt Gingrich - 7% (-6)
Tim Pawlenty - 5% (-8)
Jon Huntsman - 3% (-1)

If Sarah Palin runs, Bachmann falls to a close second – 16 percent, with 20 percent for Romney. We don’t get a Perry-less poll result, but the Pawlenty’s loss is equal to half of Perry’s new support. Score one for conventional wisdom: The voters looking for an anti-Romney are completely open to look at a new candidate.