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Romney, Clinton Lead In New ARG Iowa Poll

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Mitt Romney has opened up a 10-point lead in the latest American Research Group (ARG) poll of likely Republican Iowa caucus voters. Romney had trailed Giuliani by one point in ARG's previous poll in late July, but the former Massachusetts Governor now leads all GOP contenders in the most recent surveys by every public pollster:

ARG: 27-17 over Giuliani (August 26-29)
Zogby: 33-14 over Giuliani (August 17-18)
ABC News / Washington Post: 25-14 over Giuliani (July 26-31)
KCCI-TV / Research 2000: 25-14 over Fred Thompson (June 23-25)
Mason-Dixon: 25-21 over Thompson (June 13-16)
Iowa Poll (Des Moines Register): 29-16 over Giuliani and John McCain (May 12-16)

In the new ARG poll, Mike Huckabee has surged to 14 percent—good for third place. Huckabee had never received more than 2 percent in any of ARG's previous eight surveys, so the former Arkansas Governor is definitely benefiting within the Hawkeye State (if not nationally) from his strong showing in the Iowa Straw Poll conducted earlier in the month.

Fred Thompson, who will be officially launching his presidential campaign on September 6th, was fourth in the new ARG poll with 13 percent, followed by non-candidate Newt Gingirch at 7 percent, Senator John McCain at 5 percent, and Congressmen Ron Paul and Duncan Hunter at 1 percent each.

McCain has tumbled from 29 percent in ARG's March Iowa survey to 26 percent in April, 25 percent in May, 13 percent in June, to just 5 percent this month. In a poll released today by Arizona State University, the Senator is also just barely leading Romney in his home state of Arizona, 24-19 percent.

On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton leads the pack for the fourth straight monthly ARG poll in Iowa. However, at 28 percent, Clinton's measured support was at its second lowest level across nine polls since December 2006. Barack Obama registered his highest level of support in Iowa at 23 percent, followed by John Edwards (20 percent), Bill Richardson (13 percent), Dennis Kucinich (3 percent), Joe Biden (1 percent), and Chris Dodd (1 percent).

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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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