In just a few short weeks, Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich rode the rising polls in his favor all the way to the top spot.
In a CNN/ORC poll released today, Gingrich garnered 24 percent of support from more than 1,000 Republican leaning voters.
Candidate Mitt Romney came in second place with 20 percent of the vote. However, the margin of error is 5 percentage points, showing the race is wide open between Gingrich and Romney.
A CNN poll only a week ago showed Romney at 24 percent and Gingrich at 22 percent. Last week, Gingrich told ABC News that polls are no guarantee.
“This is a wild race,” Gingrich said. “Who knows what the polls are going to be two months from now. I’m not going to tell you I’m on the way.”
Gingrich felt the heat of being the presidential front runner this week when it was revealed Gingrich’s consulting company was paid nearly $2 million by Freddie Mac. Gingrich denied he did any lobbying for the failed home mortgage corporation.
In an ABC/Yahoo interview on Nov. 8 with ABC News’ Jake Tapper, Gingrich said if he could withstand the “intense testing process,” he could very well be the nominee.
“The challenge is going to be simple. Sooner or later, something will happen and either I’ll be able to deal with it or I won’t. If I do, there’s a pretty good chance I’ll be the nominee,” Gingrich said
Gingrich owes his current success to his debate performances, which have drawn rave reviews from political commentators and from those polled about debate performance.
Gingrich told ABC News last week that he was “humbled” by the general conclusion that he’s offering “real substance and real solutions in the debates.”
Gingrich will participate in the CNN debate Tuesday night in Washington, D.C., which will be focused on national security.