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New Hampshire Poll Roundup

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Twenty-three polls of New Hampshire voters by 10 polling organizations have been released since the Iowa caucuses last Thursday evening (including eight this morning). What can we glean from these surveys?

While Barack Obama has noticed a significant bounce from his Iowa victory that appears to have him poised to win the Granite State for its first-in-the-nation primary on Tuesday, Mike Huckabee has not been able to translate his success in the Hawkeye State to the northeast, and will be fighting for third place (with Rudy Giuliani and Ron Paul).

Obama is on top in each of the last 11 polls released, whereas Hillary Clinton had led in 69 of the previous 76 New Hampshire polls dating back to late January 2007. Obama's lead ranges from a low of a statistically insignificant 1 point (Suffolk/WHDH) to double digits leads in surveys released by CNN, Rasmussen, USA Today/Gallup, Zogby, and American Research Group. Clinton last polled on top (by just a few points) in surveys conducted through Saturday. The importance of the polls released today is that the entire survey field dates occurred after Iowa's caucuses on January 3rd.

On the Republican side, Huckabee has seen an uptick in support of no more than a few points in New Hampshire—he was polling at around 9 to 12 percent before the Iowa caucuses and, in the eight polls released today, is still polling at just 9 to 14 percent (averaging 11.5 percent).

John McCain, as projected by most pundits, has turned Mitt Romney's 2nd place 'loss' in Iowa to his advantage in New Hampshire. McCain leads in 9 of the 10 polls released today, by between 1 and 9 points. Romney leads by 3 points in the Suffolk/WHDH survey.

But Obama's buzz seems to be much greater than McCain's, and the fear in the McCain camp is that more and more independents will decide at the last hour to vote in the Democratic primary (for Obama) than in the Republican primary (for McCain). McCain holds a significant advantage—more than 2:1 in several polls—over Romney among independents, or undeclared voters, while Romney is the clear winner among Republicans. There appears, at this point, to be more impetus in the Granite state among non-Democrats to see Clinton lose (and Obama win) than there is to see McCain beat Romney. Romney is still very popular in New Hampshire, as evidenced by his high favorability rating, and is not seeing the slippage that Clinton is experiencing these last few days.

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Remains of the Data

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Political Crumbs

Evolving?

When Scott Walker "punted" back in February after being asked if he was comfortable with the idea of evolution he added, "That's a question a politician shouldn't be involved in one way or the other." However, it may very well be a question that is asked at one of the upcoming GOP debates this year. In South Carolina during the first GOP debate in 2012, FOX News' Juan Williams asked Tim Pawlenty, "Do you equate the teaching of creationism with the teaching of evolution as the basis for what should be taught for our nation's schools?" Pawlenty replied, "There should be room in the curriculum for study of intelligent design" but that it was up to the local school districts if it should be in a science class or comparative theory class. At the fourth Republican debate held in California, Jon Huntsman addressed the GOP becoming "anti-science" thusly: "Listen, when you make comments that fly in the face of what 98 out of 100 climate scientists have said, when you call into question the science of evolution, all I'm saying is that, in order for the Republican Party to win, we can't run from science. We can't run from mainstream conservative philosophy."


73 Months and Counting

January's preliminary Bureau of Labor Statistics numbers show Minnesota's unemployment rate of 3.7 percent was once again lower than Wisconsin's 5.0 percent. That marks the 73rd consecutive month in which Minnesota has boasted a lower jobless rate than its neighbor to the east dating back to January 2009 including each of the last 67 months by at least one point. The Gopher State has now edged Wisconsin in the employment border battle for 204 of the last 216 months dating back to February 1997. Wisconsin only managed a lower unemployment rate than Minnesota for the 12 months of 2008 during this 18-year span.


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