by Steven Ertelt
June 13, 2007
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — A new poll conducted by the Los Angeles Times and Bloomberg News finds pro-abortion presidential candidates Rudy Giuliani and Hillary Clinton still leading the race for the nominations of their respective parties. However, it also finds Fred Thompson and Barack Obama catching up and Thompson in a solid second place for the first time.
On the Republican side, Giuliani remains ahead in the race for the GOP nomination with 27 percent but he’s finding his lead shrinking as Thompson approaches a likely early July announcement saying he will enter the race.
The survey finds Thompson with the support of 21 percent of Republicans which puts him squarely ahead of Sen. John McCain and former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney for the first time. Most national polls over the last few weeks have shown the former Tennessee senator in third or fourth place but gaining on the other top candidates.
When the Times/Bloomberg poll looked at the subset of GOP voters who describe themselves as conservative Republicans, Thompson has the most support — indicating that he’s seen as the top alternative to the more establishment candidates.
Pro-life advocates are opposed to making Giuliani the GOP nominee and they have problems with McCain, who supports forcing taxpayers to fund embryonic stem cell research, and Romney, who only became pro-life a few years ago in what some call a political conversion.
Thompson compiled a 100% pro-life voting record in Congress and has said twice in recent months that he favors overturning Roe v. Wade.
Showing how his standing is rising compared with the other top contenders, the survey asked those polled another question featuring only the top four contenders and found Giuliani with 32 percent, Thompson higher at 28 percent, McCain with 17 percent and Romney with 14 percent.
Despite landing in fourth among the top prospects, Romney is shown with leads or ranked in second in numerous polls in Iowa and New Hampshire, the two leading primary states. He has been campaigning overtime there and hopes that early victories or strong showings will catapult him into the nomination.
Several candidates who are not gaining much momentum nationally continued to fare poorly in the poll.
Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee receives 3 percent; former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson, 2 percent; Rep. Duncan Hunter of California, 1 percent; and Kansas Sen. Sam Brownback, less than 1 percent.
Looking at the numbers on the Democratic side, New York Sen. Hillary Clinton holds a 33-22 percent lead over pro-abortion Illinois Sen. Barack Obama and former Vice President Al Gore, who has repeatedly said he would not seek the presidency again, has the backing of 15 percent.
Former North Carolina senator and vice presidential candidate John Edwards is seeing is once strong level of support evaporating and now stands in third place well behind Clinton and Obama with eight percent. That’s down from 14 percent in the same poll two months ago.
The poll also asked respondents about their feelings on possible general election matchups.
Though he is behind Clinton among Democrats, the poll finds he’s the strongest general election candidate as the only one in his party to beat Giuliani, McCain and Romney. Clinton runs behind each of the three marquee Republicans.
The Bloomberg/Times survey of 1,056 registered voters was conducted June 7 to 10 and has a margin of sampling error of 3 percentage points.