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Romney Continues to Lead GOP Pack in Iowa; Dem. Field Remains Tight

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In the first public opinion poll taken during the month of June of likely Iowa caucus voters, Mitt Romney continues his surge atop the Republican field. The firm of Mason Dixon (in their first Iowa poll of Election 2008) reports Romney receives the support of 25 percent of Iowa Republicans, with Fred Thompson at 21 percent and Rudy Giuliani at 15 percent. In four polls released last month, Romney was polling in the mid- to high teens in three of them (American Research Group, KCCI-TV / Research 2000, Zogby), and reached 30 percent in another (Iowa Poll).

Thompson's surge in Iowa complements his rising poll numbers in recent national surveys released this month (e.g. 28 percent in the latest Rasmussen poll, 21 percent in an LA Times poll, 20 percent in a mid-June NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, and 19 percent in a USA Today / Gallup poll).

At just 6 percent, John McCain—who led the GOP field in early Iowa polling after last November's elections—is now in a virtual tie for fourth place with Mike Huckabee (7 percent) and Sam Brownback (6 percent). This flatlining of support for McCain in the Hawkeye State demonstrates just how much polling numbers can shift in a short period of time as voters gradually begin to tune in to the Election 2008 campaigns; there are now less than 7 months until the Iowa caucuses.

Mason Dixon finds the Democratic field to be very tight at the top, as it has been throughout the spring, with Hillary Clinton (22 percent), John Edwards (21 percent) and Barack Obama (18 percent) in dead heat.

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Remains of the Data

Plurality-Winning Governors Elected At Century-Long High Water Mark

The rate of gubernatorial candidates elected without the support of a majority of voters is at its highest level since the 1910s.

Political Crumbs

Seeing Red

Congressman Nick Rahall's failed bid for a 20th term in West Virginia this cycle, combined with a narrow loss by Nick Casey to Alex Mooney in Shelley Moore Capito's open seat, means that West Virginia Democrats will be shut out of the state's U.S. House delegation for the first time in over 90 years. The Republican sweep by two-term incumbent David McKinley in the 1st CD, Mooney in the 2nd, and Evan Jenkins over Rahall in the 3rd marks the first time the GOP has held all seats in the chamber from West Virginia since the Election of 1920. During the 67th Congress (1921-1923) all six seats from the state were controlled by the GOP. Since the Election of 1922, Democrats have won 76 percent of all U.S. House elections in the Mountain State - capturing 172 seats compared to 54 for the GOP.


Home Field Advantage?

When the 114th Congress convenes in a few days, Maine will be represented by one home-grown U.S. Representative: Waterville-born Republican Bruce Poliquin. With the departure of Millinocket-born Mike Michaud, who launched a failed gubernatorial bid, the Pine Tree State was poised to send a House delegation to D.C. without any Maine-born members for the first time since 1821. Three-term U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree (born in Minnesota) coasted to reelection as expected, however Poliquin edged Kentucky-born Emily Cain by 5.3 points to keep the streak alive. Since 1876, a total of 208 of the 222 candidates elected to the nation's lower legislative chamber from the state have been born in Maine, or 94 percent.


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