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December 11, 2007

"If the election were held today..."

CNN/Opinion Research Corp. has a new poll out that should make Mike Huckabee (and really, most of the other Republican candidates) nervous. The poll has several noteworthy conclusions, but should come with a few caveats.

The poll put Republicans Mike Huckabee, Mitt Romney, John McCain, and Rudy Giuliani up against Democrats Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, and John Edwards. It was the first time Huckabee has been considered in this type of poll.

Of Republicans, Huckabee, Romney, and Giuliani lose; McCain wins in two of the matchups.

In head-to-head matchups -- the first to include Huckabee -- the former Arkansas governor loses to Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York by 10 percentage points (54 percent to 44 percent), to Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois by 15 points (55 percent to 40 percent) and to former Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina by 25 points (60 percent to 35 percent).

[...]

The poll also shows that Republican Sen. John McCain of Arizona would do best against leading Democrats. He beats Clinton by 2 percentage points (50 percent to 48 percent), ties Obama (48 percent to 48 percent) and loses to Edwards by a smaller margin (8 points) than the other Republican candidates do.

The surprising finding on the Democratic side is that Edwards does better than Clinton or Obama against the top four Republicans and he's the only one to beat all four of them.

But McCain and Edwards shouldn't get too happy about it. Without more information (it was withheld from CNN's "Complete Poll Results" (PDF)) we cannot tell whether Democrats were overrepresented. Also, the poll is of "registered voters" rather than "likely voters."

On the other hand, the poll is generally in line with Real Clear Politics' tracking of multiple head-to-head polls, in which the Republicans are almost always losing.

The winner in this poll? John McCain, who can continue to say that he's the only electable candidate that will beat Clinton.

The real loser in this poll? Fred Thompson, who wasn't even included.



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posted by Gabriel Malor at 02:22 PM

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