5 Dec 2011

new front-runner for Republicans

12:37 pm on 5 December 2011

There is a new front-runner in the Republican contest for the party's presidential nomination in the United States.

The latest poll by the Des Moines Register puts former House Speaker Newt Gingrich seven points ahead of Tea Party favourite Ron Paul.

Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney is third.

The ABC reports Mr Gingrich is hiring hire staff and opening more offices on the back of what he calls a "tsunami of support".

With a month to go before the Iowa caucuses, Mr Romney is still the front-runner in New Hampshire, but Mr Gingrich is holding the advantage in South Carolina and Florida.