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Tuesday, August 04, 2015

Deadline Day: Three More Polls (and Counting?)

Yesterday afternoon, Fox News, Monmouth, and Bloomberg each released new national polls for the Republican race. With today's 5:00 deadline looming for polls to be considered for Thursday's Fox News debate for which only ten candidates qualify, they might be the last three polls to play into the five-poll calculus... or not. We have just over nine hours for another poll or two to sneak in.

Anyway, here are the results. First, Fox News:
1. Trump 26
2. Bush 15
3. Walker 9
4. Carson 7
5. Cruz, Huckabee 6
7. Rubio, Paul 5
9. Christie, Kasich 3
11. Santorum, Fiorina 2
13. Perry 1
13. Jindal 1
15. Graham, Pataki, Gilmore: 0

Monmouth:
1. Trump 26
2. Bush 12
3. Walker 11
4. Cruz, Huckabee 6
6. Carson 5
7. Rubio, Paul, Christie 4
10. Kasich 3
11. Perry, Fiorina 2
13. Santorum, Jindal, Graham 1
16. Pataki, Gilmore 0

And Bloomberg:
1. Trump 21
2. Bush 10
3. Walker 8
4. Huckabee 7
5. Rubio 6
6. Carson, Paul 5
8. Cruz, Kasich, Christie 4
10. Perry, Santorum 2
12. Fiorina 1, Jindal, Graham 1
16. Pataki, Gilmore 0

Observations: 
1) Trump hits 26 points twice. Amazing. His Real Clear Politics average is now 22.4, and he holds a double digit lead over second place. These numbers signify the most support any Republican candidate has had at any point this year.

2) Bush is back in second after languishing in third for a few days. His RCP average is now 12.2 to Walker's 11.2.

3) Walker rounds out what's still a clear top tier of polling.

4) Yesterday I noted an interesting under-the-radar race for fourth place, which is important because fourth earns a prime podium position with the big three. That race held five candidates--Carson, Cruz, Huckabee, Paul, and Rubio--all of whom were found within 0.4 of each other in their RCP average, from Cruz's 6.2 to Paul's 5.8, with the other three in between. After yesterday's polls, the gulf has widened to 1.4. Carson is up to 6.6 and in position for the #4 spot. Huckabee is at 6.2 and Cruz clocks in at 6.0, so they're still alive for it if we have another poll or two today. Incredibly, Rubio and Paul have fallen to a tie for 7th/8th at 5.2.

5) That means Rubio and Paul, once considered favorites for the nomination, will only barely be inside the outer podiums.

6) The Kasich announcement bump might be over. Since July 12, here are his national poll numbers, earliest to most recent: 1, 1, 2, 2, 3, 4, 5, 5, 3, 3, 4, 3. That was a steady and impressive climb followed by a clear flat-lining. Still, he's in 9th place by RCP average at 3.6 and looks headed for Thursday's debate.

7) Christie has to be excited about two of those polls having him tied for 7th, including with Rubio and Paul. His average is now at 3.4. Remember, he's in competition with Perry for the tenth and last debate spot. And luckily for Christie . . .

8) . . . Perry, who was at 2.5 yesterday, fell to 2.0; polling at 1, 2 and 2 was not what he had in mind when needing to catch Christie. He needs another released poll today showing him with a big lead over Christie, or two more polls with small leads. Keep in mind he can also tie Christie, making it an 11-person debate. Fox could also do some creative rounding here and there to get Perry in, which I wouldn't rule out. This development would also put Trump in the exact center of the 11 candidates. Two more candidates and he could pull off the Last Supper pose he's probably always wanted.

9) Of everyone who's eliminated from debate contention, none showed any life.  Fiorina and Santorum went 2, 2, 1. Jindal did a triple 1. Graham continues to poll like the binary solo from Flight of the Conchords' The Humans Are Dead, going 1, 0, 1. (His last 15 polls have been 1s and 0s.)

10) Pataki and Gilmore are still doing a real good job of keeping their campaigns a secret from the voting public.

I'll leave you now with the latest RCP averages. Tomorrow I'll look at who won the races for fourth and tenth, and Thursday I'll have an official debate preview. Two more days!

RCP Averages:
1. Trump 22.4
2. Bush 12.2
3. Walker 11.2
5. Carson 6.6
5. Huckabee 6.2
6. Cruz 6.0
7. Rubio, Paul 5.2
9. Kasich 3.6
10. Christie 3.4
11. Perry 2.0
12. Santorum 1.4
13. Fiorina, Jindal 1.2
15. Graham 0.6
16. Pataki, Gilmore: Not registering

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