One of the most surprising twists in the Republican presidential race is the steep rise of Herman Cain in the polls.

He jumped 13 points last month while Rick Perry dropped twelve and is now the preferred candidate of 30 per cent of the tea party voters.

That throws up the incredible possibility that it will be Cain versus Obama for the top job in America, an unimaginable scenario just a few years ago.

The Cain mutiny has resulted in him being neck and neck with Romney for the Republican nomination.

Romney is not picking up the disaffected Perry voters, rather Cain is.

And he may have a real shot given the deep dislike of Romney among the most committed Republican voters.

"There's a door open such that people are willing to look at him and his accomplishments," Republican pollster David Winston told The Washington Post.

Political commentator Steven Schier, political science professor at Carleton College in Northfield, Minn.,told UPI Cain was certainly a major factor

"Cain's a fresh face, not a politician. He's a successful businessman and has been … articulate in debates," he said. "For all those reasons, I think that he has future possibilities."

He certainly has lived the American dream, growing up dirt poor in Georgia and ending up running one of America's largest food franchises in Godfather Pizza.

If he wins the Republican nomination it would set up the most incredible presidential race in history.