July 3, 2007

Rasmussen: Thompson Still Leads

The new Rasmussen poll out this morning shows Fred Thompson continuing to lead the GOP presidential primary race, 27%-24% over Rudy Giuliani. Rasmussen declares the contest "stabilized", with Fred holding an advantage among conservatives:

After weeks of turmoil and change, the race for the Republican Presidential nomination has stabilized.

Former Tennessee Senator Fred Thompson remains on top in Rasmussen Reports national polling with 27% support. That’s unchanged from a week ago. Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani is three points behind at 24%.

Thompson has a 16-point advantage over Giuliani among conservatives while Giuliani holds an even larger edge among moderate voters. However, in the race for the Republican Presidential nomination, there are always more conservative voters than moderates.

A separate survey found that Thompson is currently viewed as the most conservative of all GOP candidates. Giuliani remains the best liked candidate. Seventy-four percent (74%) of Republicans now have a favorable opinion of America’s Mayor. Thompson’s numbers among the GOP faithful have been moving in the opposite direction. Sixty-four percent (64%) of GOP voters have a favorable opinion of the actor while just 12% have an unfavorable view.

Mitt Romney and John McCain remain almost deadlocked in a tie for third place. That makes four surveys in a row showing this structure, with Fred and Rudy competing for the top spot and Mitt and John for the bronze medal. The percentages have changed very little for the past month and show no sign of movement That may help bolster John McCain's hopes for remaining in the race, as his precipitate drop over the last two months has stopped.

The rest of the crowd has all but disappeared. Mike Huckabee, who continues to impress in debates and on the stump, tops the second tier at 3%, with all other candidates only polling 4% combined. The race has settled to the four men at the top, but the others may remain in the race, hoping for a VP spot, if it doesn't go to whomever among the top four fails to win the nomination. Of those, Huckabee and Duncan Hunter appear to have the best chance of vying for a #2 slot.

Although Romney trails by a significant margin nationally, he leads in two critical places -- Iowa and New Hampshire. Rasmussen has him nine points ahead in his political backyard in the Granite State. At the moment, he has 26% of likely voters supporting him, nine points ahead of a tie for second place. Rudy should do better in New Hampshire, as it is his backyard as well, but the surprise is Fred Thompson. He's tied Rudy for second at 17% despite only making one brief visit, in a state notorious for demanding dedication from candidates in its primary. The Southerner has already tied one Northerner without even breaking a sweat, and the other Northerner has to worry what Fred can do in New Hampshire once he's unbound.

It's a Fred field at the moment. He looks poised to clear the table, if he can remain poised and energetic on the campaign trail.


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Comments (9)

Posted by bayam | July 3, 2007 9:16 AM

America's mayor? That's the problem- for conservative voters, a mayor who's been widely photographed in drag doesn't fit the bill. If the GOP campaign turns ugly, those photos will get even more exposure.

Posted by Jeanette | July 3, 2007 10:01 AM

I think a Thompson-Huckabee ticket would be a good ticket, but since both are from the South that may not work.

Thompson-Giuliani would also work even with their differing political beliefs as far as social issues go. Both would be strong on national defense, IMO.

Posted by Monkei | July 3, 2007 10:44 AM

Gee what does it say about the GOP when it's front runner (Mayor 911) is tied by a guy not even in the race!

Posted by KW64 | July 3, 2007 11:53 AM

Rasmussen polls likely Republican primary voters and only in this poll does Thompson lead. Among registered republicans and republican leading indepents, other polls show a significant Giuliani lead. It may boil down to whether Rudy can expand the usual primary voter turnout.

Here in New York, we usually get about 15% to 20% primary turnout. That could be much larger with New Yorkers in both party's races.

I would also predict a bigger than usual turnout nationally than previous years due to the heavy early interest and big states voting earlier with the issue still in doubt. This could make primary voting results closer to the registered voter type polls and bring Rudy to victory.

Some polls also show more voters go to Giuliani than Thompson if McCain withdraws. That is surprising to me but if that valid, and McCain looks hopeless, it may help Giuliani.

Posted by Todd G | July 3, 2007 1:15 PM

It's a Fred field at the moment. He looks poised to clear the table, if he can remain poised and energetic on the campaign trail.
From what I've seen on the 'tube (YouTube and the old Tube), "Fred Live" lacks the drive and polish to seal the deal. I really (really, really) like what he writes and his audio bits, but from the speeches I've seen and his Leno appearance he doesn't look ready for prime time. Frumpy, slouching, no passion in his voice. For goodness sake, you're running for the Leader of the Free World!

I think if he gets his presentation act together and really shows a fire-in-the-belly style, he'll go far. I for one certainly hope so. He brings a "Citizen Leader" feel--deserved or not--to the field.

If not, I fear the words of another Fred, Fred Barnes, who said that Thompson would be beaten by Arthur Branch, the character he plays on L&O.

Posted by JAF | July 3, 2007 1:44 PM

I can understand how the Captain is supporting Thompson so that is why he shades which polls to cover. But to be honest- the Real Clear Politics rolling average of EVERY poll has Giuliani leading Thompson by 7.3% today. It is not like Fred! can simply give a few speeches and will then be crowned the sacrificial lamb to be beaten by Hillary.

Why would any rational GOP primary voter choose the WEAKER general election candidate when deciding between FT and RG?!! Idiotic

Posted by JD | July 3, 2007 3:08 PM

Putting aside all other arguments there's a very simple observation to be made. Who has the Clinton machine actually made preemptive attacks on? I would contend that Giuliani has more vulnerable issues than Thompson yet at who was the first swipe made?

Of course I'm making the assumption that the Clinton machine is reasonably competent (let's not address moral bankruptcy) which isn't necessarily true. But if you take this assumption as reasonable then, assuming they believe they have the Democrat primary process in hand, they would be attempting to preempt their most likely Republican opponent.

The Clinton machine statements that Giuliani is a "more difficult target" etc. doesn't pass logic tests. I'm not a Thompson supporter yet, though I am leaning in that direction. My own assessment is Thompson's standings are at a minimum equivalent to the Rasmussen poll and are probably higher. We can argue about potential competency later but my opinion is that the last thing the Hillary gaggle wishes to face is someone who projects an earnest, upright demeanor. Even many Democrats consider Hillary a conniving (expletive).

Posted by Project Vote Smart | July 3, 2007 4:04 PM

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Posted by Anthony | July 5, 2007 8:25 AM

How is New Hampshire in Guiliani's backyard?