Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney (R) leads other GOP candidates gunning for Florida Republicans' support in the state's presidential primary next year.

Twenty-six percent of likely Republican primary voters polled in Florida named Romney as their preference in a presidential primary, according to an American Research Group poll released Tuesday.

That puts Romney 12 points ahead of former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee (R), who placed second in the ARG poll. Fourteen percent of Florida Republicans said they like to see Huckabee, who moved to Florida within the past year, as the party's nominee in 2012.

Florida plays host to an influential primary in the nominating cycle. The state had sought to leapfrog other contests in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, but has been met with stern rebuke by Republican officials. The 2012 Republican National Convention will be held in Tampa Bay.

Eleven percent of Florida GOP voters named former House Speaker Newt Gingrich as their top choice, putting the former Georgia Republican in third place. Nine percent preferred former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R).

Eleven percent of the GOP voters polled said they were undecided.

The poll, conducted April 27-May 2, has a 4 percent margin of error.