Ayres poll shows Romney, Giuliani, McCain in dead heat

Whit Ayres has some figures he’s releasing today from a poll he did for tourism interests. A side finding of the poll — which talked to 300 likely voters each in the S.C. Democratic and Republican primaries — is that the horse race has shifted.

Romney and McCain are within the margin of error (which is large — 5.6 percent — for a sample that small) of each other, with Giuliani between them. Essentially, they’re in a tie for first.

Thompson, who recently had been said to be in the lead, comes in fourth.

I heard about this from someone with the McCain campaign, who was justifiably pleased, as it showed his candidate doing better than in recent polls. He neglected to mention that McCain’s lead over Thompson is also within the margin. But if the poll is accurate, we’re looking at the post-announcement bounce for Thompson wearing off, and McCain apparently being the main beneficiary.

I hear our newsroom will have a story on this, so I await the details from that.

1 thought on “Ayres poll shows Romney, Giuliani, McCain in dead heat

  1. Scott

    Excluding leaners, Giuliani, McCain, and Thompson are in a statistical tie which is a move for McCain.
    With one caveat: This is true only if they didn’t screen for previous primary participation (which adds older and more “established” partisans to the mix…who support McCain in slightly higher numbers). I know full well there are reasons that the campaigns do this, but I stand by the assertion that it is methodologically flawed.
    If, however, it is among registered, likely voters (NO previous primary screen), this is good news for McCain. The large margin of error makes parsing details difficult, but the key things to take away are direction and momentum. So (again, assuming no screen), this means McCain’s numbers have climbed in the last month.
    Actually, I plan to watch Huckabee’s numbers closely over the next two weeks. I think they may be on the move (Chuck Norris IS all powerful, after all) and I am interested to see who he bleeds support from (I have my suspicions….and so, apparently, does the Huckabee campaign).

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