Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney addresses a group of Republican supporters in West Palm Beach, Fl. Saturday, July 7, 2007 urging their support in his bid for the presidency.
(AP Photo/J. Pat Carter)
DURHAM – New York Senator Hillary Clinton continues to lead the field of Democratic candidates in the New Hampshire primary although Illinois Senator Barack Obama has narrowed her lead to single digits. New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson is narrowly in the third spot. The war in Iraq continues to be seen as the most important issue in the campaign.
These findings are based on the latest CNN / WMUR New Hampshire Primary Poll* conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center. Three hundred thirty-three (333) randomly selected likely New Hampshire Democratic primary voters were interviewed by telephone between July 9 and July 17, 2007. The margin of sampling error is +/- 5.5%.
Hillary Clinton, who has led the field of potential Democratic candidates among likely New Hampshire Democratic Primary voters for more than two years, remains in the lead. However, Clinton’s lead over Barak Obama has slipped to only 8 percentage points. Clinton currently is favored by 33% of likely Democratic Primary voters followed by Obama (25%), New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson (10%), former North Carolina Senator John Edwards (8%) former Vice President Al Gore (8%), Delaware Senator Joe Biden (3%), Ohio Congressman Dennis Kucinich (3%), some other candidate (1%), and 9% are undecided. When Gore is dropped from the race, there is little change in the overall race dynamic – Clinton still leads (36%), followed by Obama (27%), Richardson (11%), and Edwards (9%).
Clinton has been the front-runner in New Hampshire and across the country and her support in New Hampshire has been in the mid-30s most of the past two years. She gets her strongest support from women, older voters, those with lower levels of income, Catholics and voters living in the New Hampshire Seacoast.
Obama has narrowed Clinton’s lead from 14 to 8 percentage points over the past month. Obama’s strongest support comes from undeclared voters, political independents, and young voters. “Obama is well positioned among Democratic voters with high incomes and education who also tend to be more liberal,” said Andrew Smith, Director of the UNH Survey Center. “He is also doing well among the undeclared voters who have the option of voting in either primary and as two-thirds of undeclareds indicate they are going to vote in the Democratic primary, it represents a large pool of support for Obama.”
Support for Richardson has remained steady and he is now in the third spot, slightly ahead of Edwards and Gore. Richardson has been at 10 percent the past two months. He gets his strongest support from voters with postgraduate educations.
Edwards has seen his support steadily decrease in recent months, from 21% in April to 12% in June and to 8% in July.
“Clinton clearly appeals most to traditional Democratic voters,” said Dante Scala of the University of New Hampshire Department of Political Science, “but her base of support remains broad, including independents and anti-war Democrats.” “Bill Richardson is making significant inroads among highly educated voters, who have trended toward Obama nationally,” he added.
ROMNEY EXTENDS LEAD IN NH
Mitt Romney has increased his lead in the New Hampshire Republican Primary. Rudy Giuliani remains in second place while John McCain has slipped to fourth place behind Fred Thompson. The most important issues on the minds of Republican voters are the war in Iraq and the economy.
These findings are based on the latest CNN / WMUR New Hampshire Primary Poll* conducted by the University of New Hampshire Survey Center. Three hundred seven (307) randomly selected likely New Hampshire Republican primary voters were interviewed by telephone between July 9 and July 17, 2007. The margin of sampling error is +/- 5.5%.
Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney has widened his lead over the Republican field in New Hampshire. Currently, 33% of likely Republican primary voters say they will vote for Romney, 18% say they will vote for former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani, 13% support former Tennessee Senator and actor Fred Thompson, and 12% say they support Arizona Senator John McCain.
Support for Romney has increased from 28% in June to 33% in July and support for Thompson increased slightly from 11% to 13%. McCain, who’s campaign has gone through a serious shakeup recently, has seen his support cut in half over recent months – McCain stood at 29% in the April Granite State Poll, dropped to 20% in June, and has fallen further to 12% today. Support for Giuliani has dropped slightly from 20% to 18% since June.
Among other Republican contenders, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich is supported by 3% of likely Republican primary voters followed by Texas Congressman Ron Paul (2%), former Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee (2%), and former Wisconsin Governor Tommy Thompson. None of the other Republican challengers gets even 1% support from potential voters and 12% are undecided.
When Newt Gingrich is dropped from the mix, there is little overall change in the race – Romney still leads (34%), followed by Giuliani (20%), Thompson (13%) and McCain (12%).
“Romney’s strategy of concentrating his campaigning in New Hampshire and spending on television here is working for him, especially as the other Republican candidates have been spending much of their time in other states,” said Andrew Smith, Director of the UNH Survey Center. “However, when the other Republicans decide to focus on New Hampshire, support for them will likely increase.” Romney has widespread support with no real weaknesses. His strongest support comes from voters who are most concerned with illegal immigration.
Giuliani does best among non-religious voters. Thompson is strongest among Bush supporters. McCain does not get strong support from any group, but does best among voters with post-graduate educations.
It is important to note that the Republican race is far from over -- only 7% of likely Republican primary voters say they have definitely decided who they will vote for, 22% say they are leaning toward a candidate, and 71% say they are still trying to decide who to support.
Read the poll results: