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New ARG Iowa Poll Finds Rudy & Hillary On Top

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Less than a week after the Des Moines Register's Iowa Poll found the leads of John Edwards and Mitt Romney growing in their respective party presidential bids, the eighth in a series of monthly American Research Group (ARG) polls finds Hillary Clinton with nearly a double digit lead, and Giuliani and Romney in a dead heat.

Clinton received 30 percent of the measured support in the ARG poll of 600 likely Democratic caucus voters, surveyed July 26-30. ARG has measured Clinton's support at or above 30 percent in seven of its eight polls since December 2006. John Edwards registered at 21 percent—he has only eclipsed the 30 percent mark once in ARG polling (March 2007).

The other big story coming out of this new poll on the Democratic side of the ticket is New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson's showing at 13 percent—just 2 points below Barack Obama. Richardson's support had never been measured in double-digits by ARG previously, and more than doubles his June 2007 showing (5 percent).

The Republican side of the ticket is also in flux. Rudy Giuliani (22 percent) and Mitt Romney (21 percent) swap positions compared to June's ARG survey, with Romney falling 4 points and Giuliani rising 4 points.

John McCain appears to have stopped the bleeding for the moment. After falling in three straight ARG polls—from 29 percent in March to 26 percent in April to 25 percent in May to 13 percent in June—McCain gained 4 points in July, coming in third at 17 percent. Fred Thompson registered in fourth at 13 percent.

Expect a lot more movement among the Democrats and Republicans in the coming months. Overall 15 percent of likely Democratic and Republican caucus voters were undecided as to which candidate they would support—the second highest level of undecided likely voters for each party in ARG's eight months of polling.

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Remains of the Data

Gender Equality in the US House: A State-by State Quarter-Century Report Card (1989-2014)

A study of 5,325 congressional elections finds the number of female U.S. Representatives has more than tripled over the last 25 years, but the rate at which women are elected to the chamber still varies greatly between the states.

Political Crumbs

Small Club in St. Paul

Mark Dayton is one of just three Minnesotans ever elected to three different statewide offices. Dayton, of course, had previously served as State Auditor (1991-1995) and U.S. Senator (2001-2007) before winning the governorship in 2010. At that time, he joined Republicans Edward Thye and J.A.A. Burnquist on this very short list. Burnquist was elected lieutenant governor in 1914 but then became governor after the death of Democrat Winfield Hammond in 1915. He then won the gubernatorial elections of 1916 and 1918 and eight terms as attorney general two decades later (1939-1955). Thye was similarly first elected lieutenant governor of the Gopher State and became governor after the resignation of fellow GOPer Harold Stasson in 1943. Thye won one additional full term as governor in 1944 and then two terms to the U.S. Senate (1947-1959). Twenty Minnesotans have been elected to two different statewide offices.


Respect Your Elders?

With retirement announcements this year by veteran U.S. Representatives such as 30-term Democrat John Dingell of Michigan, 20-term Democrat George Miller of California, and 18-term Republican Tom Petri of Wisconsin, it is no surprise that retirees from the 113th Congress are one of the most experienced cohorts in recent decades. Overall, these 24 exiting members of the House have served an average of 11.0 terms - the second longest tenure among retirees across the last 18 cycles since 1980. Only the U.S. Representatives retiring in 2006 had more experience, averaging 11.9 terms. (In that cycle, 10 of the 11 retiring members served at least 10 terms, with GOPer Bill Jenkins of Tennessee the lone exception at just five). Even without the aforementioned Dingell, the average length of service in the chamber of the remaining 23 retirees in 2014 is 10.2 terms - which would still be the third highest since 1980 behind the 2006 and 2012 (10.5 terms) cycles.


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