American Research Group posted these interesting findings showing that Texas Gov. Rick Perry is at the top of the pack of Republican presidential candidates -- even though he's technically not running.
Perry pulls in 16 percent support, putting him technically neck and neck with Mitt Romney (15%) Michele Bachmann (15%), Sarah Palin (13% and another non-campaigning campaigner). Godfather's pizza founder Herman Cain also makes a strong showing with 11%.
Perry and Bachmann's numbers are even higher -- 18 and 16 percent, respectively -- when the poll factors in the most-likely voters. Bachmann also does best (20 percent) with tea party supporters. But the error margin is technically higher with the smaller subset.
Overall, Rudy Giuliani (who'll likely help Perry) pulls in 7 percent. That's better than announced candidate Ron Paul (4 percent). The poll is even worse news for Newt Gingrich (Gingrich 3%) and Jon Huntsman, Tim Pawlenty and Rick Santorum who are battling each other with 1 percent. Gary Johnson registered less than a percent.
The poll is a beauty contest of sorts because it includes so many candidates who haven't announced. But, because it screened for likely Republican voters and shows Perry as strong as he is along with Giuliani, it's tough to believe the Texas governor won't run. Perry aides say he'll definitely announce by the Presidency 5 Republican Party of Florida straw poll and debate.
Whether he actually participates in the straw poll is unclear, but chances are he would if he runs. And he's almost definitely going to run.