Nov 26-29... Dec 16-19
Giuliani 22%.... 16%
Huckabee 13%.... 11%
McCain 11%.... 26%
Romney 36%.... 26%
Thompson 3%.... 4%
Undecided 12%.... 10%
The latest(December 18) Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of the state shows Romney with 31% support, McCain at 27% and no one else close. Rudy Giuliani attracts 13% and Huckabee barely reaches double digits at 11%. This is the first time any candidate has been within single digits of Romney in several months. It remains to be seen whether this is a temporary bounce or a lasting change.
Before the latest endorsements, it was Romney 33% and McCain 18%. In late-November, Romney led by nineteen points. Earlier in November he was up by fifteen.
Guiliani has apparently abandoned New Hampshire, hoping to make a stand later in Florida. McCain is now neck and neck, with two weeks to go until the primary.
What is even more impressive, McCain is back in the conversation in Iowa, a state that he hasn't campaigned in, one in which he was polling a distant 5th. The endorsement from the Des Moines Register has given McCain a major boost, which might explain why the campaign has decided to bring McCain back after Christmas. This result is shocking:
Nov 10-14.. Nov 26-29.. Dec 16-19
Giuliani 11%... 9%... 13%
Huckabee 24%... 27%... 28%
McCain 10%... 9%... 20%
Paul 3%... 3%... 4%
Romney 26%... 28%... 17%
Thompson 11%... 14%... 5%
Undecided 13%... 9%... 11%
Another poll, not quite as dramatic, but still impressive:
It’s now Huckabee 28%, Romney 27%, and the man endorsed by the Des Moines Register, John McCain, in third at 14%. No other Republican candidate reaches double digits.
To put that result in context, here is the same outfit just last week:
McCain lacks the organization that is critical in the strange expression of democracy that is a caucus. However, Romney and Huckabee are engaged in a fierce battle, with Romney in particular going very negative in his ads. McCain doesn't have to win Iowa, in the game of expectations. A credible third will be spun as a mini-victory, given the relative emphasis, enough that it won't hurt his prospects heading into New Hampshire.
It's still anyone's guess on the Republican side, some have even suggested a brokered convention. As the voting nears, McCain is suddenly well placed to exploit a fluid dynamic.
New national poll that shows McCain growing, Rudi sagging:
12/18 - 12/19