- The Washington Times - Friday, January 4, 2008

Mitt Romney, who looked as if he was succumbing to a John McCain come-from-behind onslaught in New Hampshire, has retaken the lead in the latest Suffolk University-Boston 7 News poll. “Romney knows where his strengths are and is addressing his weaknesses,” said poll director David Paleologos. “He has all but erased McCain’s advantage with older voters and focusing on that constituency is smart politics — they turn out in these elections.” Hillary Clinton, who stunned supporters and analysts with a third-place finish behind Barack Obama and John Edwards in the Iowa caucuses last night, holds on to her lead over Mr. Obama among independents and Democrats likely to vote in the New Hampshire primary on Tuesday, the same poll showed. Among those likely to vote in the GOP primary, Mr. Romney posted 29 percent, four percentage points ahead of Mr. McCain’s 24 percent. Mike Huckabee, the overwhelming Iowa winner, gained a single percentage point over the previous day, now showing 13 percent support among poll respondents. Rudy Giuliani, still leading in national polls, posted 9 percent in this latest New Hampshire survey, followed by physician and libertarian-minded Republican Ron Paul at 8 percent. Fred Thompson, once the great hope of some anti-Giuiani conservatives, registered only 2 percent), and Duncan Hunter, a favorite of the Pat Buchanan faction of the GOP, posted 1 percent. Twelve percent of respondents said they remain undecided. Rudy Giuliani’s numbers have either declined or stayed the same in eight consecutive polls from a high of 37 percent in March of 2007 to the current level of 9 percent as of Jan. 4, 2008. Mr. Paleologos noted that Mr. Romney now challenges Mr. McCain’s former stronghold of voters over 65. Mr. Romney still trails McCain 35 percent to 33 percent, “but has made significant gains with another 16 percent who are undecided and up for grabs. The former Massachusetts governor, around whom most anti-Giuliani GOP forces have coalesced, can thank his advance on “very strong support among young women ages 18-45 years where Romney now leads McCain 34 percent to 20 percent, with Mike Huckabee also polling 20 percent in this category,” the poll reported.

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