Mitt Romney Leads Giuliani in Iowa Prior to Republican Straw Poll

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Aug 8, 2007   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Mitt Romney Leads Giuliani in Iowa Prior to Republican Straw Poll Email this article
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by Steven Ertelt Editor
August 8,

Des Moines, IA ( — Republicans from across the state of Iowa will gather in Ames on Saturday to determine a tentative favorite and possibly eliminate one or more of the lower-tier candidates. Looking ahead for the weekend battle, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney is in good shape at the top of the latest poll.

A new ABC News/Washington Post survey released today shows Romney ahead in Iowa with the support of 25 percent of self-identified GOP voters.

Former mayor Rudy Giuliani had 14 percent and former Sen. Fred Thompson, who has not yet entered the race, was the favorite of 13 percent.

Continuing his slide in the polls, Arizona Sen. John McCain got the support of only 8 percent and he tied former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, whose stock has been rising in recent weeks.

Sen. Sam Brownback and Rep. Tom Tancredo both had 5 percent and Reps. Duncan Hunter and Ron Paul polled less than 5 percent each.

One recent Iowa poll confirms those results but another survey disputes it.

A Research 2000 poll had Romney leading Giuliani 25-13 and Thompson at 14 percent and McCain at 10 percent.

However, an American Research Group survey showed Giuliani over Romney 22-21 percent with Thompson at 13 and McCain higher at 17 percent.

Giuliani and McCain are not competing in the straw poll, though the thousands of attendees can still vote for the two candidates. As a result, Romney is expected to win the non-binding event and Brownback and Huckabee are hoping to boost themselves into the upper echelon of candidates with strong showings.

All of the Republican candidates other than Giuliani say they are pro-life on abortion but they have mixed views on embryonic stem cell research.

The straw poll has eliminated candidates in the past, such as Sen. Lamar Alexander and former Vice President Dan Quayle, who both dropped out after the straw poll.

Former Wisconsin Gov. Tommy Thompson has already said he would likely drop out of the presidential race if he doesn’t have a strong showing Saturday. He has been campaigning in Iowa at a breakneck pace in order to build support for the weekend vote.