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Tancredo Officially Enters GOP Race in Iowa

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The field vying for the Republican Party's 2008 presidential nomination got even more crowded this week when 5-term Colorado congressman Tom Tancredo entered the race on Monday in an on-air radio announcement in Des Moines.

Tancredo, a former schoolteacher and Education Department appointee under Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, has been the most vocal opponent on the Hill against illegal immigration since he took office in 1999. Until recently, Tancredo had chaired the 104-member bipartisan House Immigration Reform Caucus (now headed by California GOP congressman Brian Billbray).

Tancredo may be viewed in GOP circles as a single-issue candidate, but the congressman has been a consistent voice for change on this issue, which has significant support among the Party's conservative wing. The Republican congressman has frequently levied the harshest of criticisms at his own party members, leadership, and President George W. Bush for not enforcing America's federal immigration laws and for neglecting to secure its ports and borders.

In early surveys taken before Tancredo announced his candidacy, the Congressman was polling in the low single digits in most states. Tancredo polled at 2 percent in a January Zogby poll of likely GOP Iowa caucus voters and 1 percent in each of the last three American Research Group polls of Hawkeye State republicans. In a recent ARG poll in his home state of Colorado, Tancredo scored 7 percent of the support of likely GOP voters.

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Remains of the Data

No Free Passes: States With 2 Major Party Candidates in Every US House Race

Indiana has now placed candidates from both major parties on the ballot in a nation-best 189 consecutive U.S. House races, with New Hampshire, Minnesota, Idaho, and Montana also north of 100 in a row.

Political Crumbs

Gubernatorial Highs and Lows

Two sitting governors currently hold the record for the highest gubernatorial vote ever received in their respective states by a non-incumbent: Republican Matt Mead of Wyoming (65.7 percent in 2010) and outgoing GOPer Dave Heineman of Nebraska (73.4 percent in 2006). Republican Gary Herbert of Utah had not previously won a gubernatorial contest when he notched a state record 64.1 percent for his first victory in 2010, but was an incumbent at the time after ascending to the position in 2009 after the early departure of Jon Huntsman. Meanwhile, two sitting governors hold the record in their states for the lowest mark ever recorded by a winning gubernatorial candidate (incumbent or otherwise): independent-turned-Democrat Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island (36.1 percent in 2010) and Democrat Terry McAuliffe of Virginia (47.8 percent in 2013).


An Idaho Six Pack

Two-term Idaho Republican Governor Butch Otter only polled at 39 percent in a recent PPP survey of the state's 2014 race - just four points ahead of Democratic businessman A.J. Balukoff. Otter's low numbers reflect his own struggles as a candidate (witness his weak primary win against State Senator Russ Fulcher) combined with the opportunity for disgruntled Idahoans to cast their votes for one of four third party and independent candidates, who collectively received the support of 12 percent of likely voters: Libertarian John Bujak, the Constitution Party's Steve Pankey, and independents Jill Humble and Pro-Life (aka Marvin Richardson). The six candidate options in a gubernatorial race sets an all-time record in the Gem State across the 46 elections conducted since statehood. The previous high water mark of five candidates was reached in seven previous cycles: 1902, 1904, 1908, 1912, 1914, 1966, and 2010.


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