AZ for Mitt

A blog dedicated to informing Arizonans about Mitt Romney and the campaign for the 2008 presidential nomination.

Thursday, November 29, 2007



Huckabee Said He Did Not Support Giving Illegal's Tuition Breaks. "Ashley, first of all let me express that you're a little misinformed. We never passed a bill that gave special privileges to the children of illegals to go to college. Let me tell you what i did do. I supported the bill that would have allowed those children who had been in our schools their entire school life, the opportunity to have the same scholarship that their peers had, who had also gone to high school with them and sat in the same classrooms. They couldn't just move in in their senior year and go to college. It wasn't about out of state tuition, it was an academic meritorious scholarship, the academic challenge scholarship." (CNN/YouTube, [Unverified Transcript], Republican Presidential Candidate Debate, St. Petersburg, FL, 11/28/07)


Huckabee Claims About His Push To Give Illegals In-State Tuition Breaks Are Circumspect:

Huckabee Said That In Arkansas He Supported A Program Where Illegal Aliens Were Granted "Scholarship[s]" For Doing "Academically Well." FOX NEWS' BILL HEMMER: "The suggestion in that is that you favor giving children of illegal immigrants tuition breaks." HUCKABEE: "Here's the deal -- he has hit me on that. Mitt Romney has tried to hit me on that. What I supported was the idea that if a student had been in our Arkansas high schools and had done academically well to be able to compete for an academic challenged scholarship which was meritorious then that student should be able to have the same opportunity as anyone else. It wasn't a special break. It was something that a person had earned." (Fox News' "Live," 11/14/07;

Huckabee Claimed That The Bill Would Reward Illegal Children Who Stayed Off Drugs And Alcohol. HUCKABEE: "The one area I'm being attacked on is while governor I did propose that if children had been in our public schools for their entire career and had excelled academically, that we would allow them to go to college in Arkansas and be able to also have the academic challenge scholarship and pay in-state tuition because, after all, they were in-state students and had earned that same academic standing as others. The idea is they had to be citizens or in the process of applying. They also had to commit to making sure they were drug and alcohol-free. And the basic concept, and I know this is still an anathema to some people, I don't believe you punish the children for the crime and sins of the parents." (Fox News' "Hannity & Colmes," 11/15/07)

But His Claims Have Proven To Be False:

The Scholarship Portion Of The Bill Was Stripped From The Bill. "The bill began as one touted by Gov. Mike Huckabee to allow undocumented Arkansans to qualify for state-sponsored academic scholarships the same way as legal residents. The governor, who drew criticism from some quarters for backing the proposal, said children who have been good students deserve the same opportunities, regardless of their parents' standing. Hard-liners, led by state Sen. Jim Holt, R-Springdale, said 'illegal aliens,' as they prefer, have no rights because they're lawbreakers. It may not be fair to single Holt out because he had plenty of company. When House Bill 1525 stalled in a Senate committee, the scholarship portion of the bill was stripped out, sending the measure to the Senate floor, where it failed twice, the final time by only two votes." (Dennis Byrd, "Federal Judge: Illegal Immigrants Qualify For Tuition Breaks," Arkansas News, 7/10/05;

And The Bill That Was Actually Voted On Only Included In-State Tuition Breaks For Illegals:

H.B. 1525, "Access To Postsecondary Education Act Of 2005":

Note: There Is Also No Language Regarding Staying Off Drugs Or Alcohol.

Governor Huckabee Fought To Pass The Stripped Bill Which Granted ONLY In-State Tuition Breaks For Illegals. "Other than the highway plan, the only bill in the governor's 21-bill legislative package that failed to win legislative approval was a proposal to make the children of illegal immigrants eligible for state-funded scholarships and in-state tuition to Arkansas colleges. After passing the House relatively early in the session, the bill faltered in the Senate where it was amended to remove the scholarship provision but fell just short of passage Tuesday and Wednesday. Huckabee said his office worked throughout the day Wednesday for the two Senate votes needed to pass the bill. 'I don't understand the opposition to it, I just honestly don't,' Huckabee said. 'It hurts me on a personal as well as a policy level to think that we are still debating issues that I kind of hoped we had put aside in the 1960s, maybe at the latest the 70s, and yet I understand people have deep passions about things usually they don't fully understand.'" (Melissa Nelson, "Governor Touts Successful End To Legislative Session," The Associated Press, 4/13/05)

The Washington Post Called Out Huckabee's Misleading Statements. "On Fox News Wednesday, he was asked about a bill he supported as governor that would have granted tuition breaks to the children of illegal immigrants. He suggested that he had only wanted to give such children access to scholarships. 'What I supported was the idea that if a student had been in our Arkansas high schools and had done academically well to be able to compete for an academic challenged scholarship which was meritorious then that student should be able to have the same opportunity as anyone else,' Huckabee said. In fact, the initial bill he supported did have a scholarship provision. But that provision was later stripped out, and was not included in the legislation that Huckabee continued to push. The bill read: 'Any tuition rate that is granted to residents of Arkansas shall be granted on the same terms to all persons, regardless of immigration status, who have attended a secondary educational institution in Arkansas for at least three (3) years and who have either graduated from an Arkansas high school or received a general education diploma in the state.'" (Michael D. Shear, "Rising in Iowa Polls, Huckabee Now In Crosshairs," The Washington Post,, Posted 11/15/07)

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A potential Mayor Giuliani supporter at The Corner says Rudy is “all wrong” with his attack on Governor Romney.

Mitt's Illegals here in Massachusetts

Michael Graham

I'm leaning Rudy, but he's all wrong on the Romney illegal immigrant yard workers. They were working for a legal immigrant's legal company, a company widely used.

The Boston Globe worked hard to link their employment directly to Mitt, and failed utterly. Their final conclusion was that Romney's case proved it's simply impossible to have any immigration enforcement.

Romney's answer—that the only way he could catch them was to stop yard workers with funny accents—is absolutely right.

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Giuliani Denied The Fact That New York Was A Sanctuary City. "That was a very good question and the reality is that New York City was not a sanctuary city. No single illegal immigrant that new York city could find that either committed a crime or was suspected of a crime that was in the executive order originally done by ed Koch." (CNN/YouTube, [Unverified Transcript], Republican Presidential Candidate Debate, St. Petersburg, FL, 11/28/07)


Mayor Giuliani Promoted New York As A Sanctuary City:

The New York Times Headline, 1994: "New York Officials Welcome Immigrants, Legal Or Illegal"

As Mayor, Giuliani Actually Invited More Illegal Immigrants To Come To New York City. "Mr. Giuliani said, 'If you come here and you work hard and you happen to be in an undocumented status, you're one of the people who we want in this city. You're somebody that we want to protect, and we want you to get out from under what is often a life of being like a fugitive, which is really unfair.'" (Deborah Sontag, "New York Officials Welcome Immigrants, Legal Or Illegal," The New York Times, 6/10/94)

ABC News: "If Giuliani Inherited The [Koch] Policy, He Reissued It And Seemed To Embrace It." "New York became a sanctuary city, where illegal immigrants enjoy some measure of protection, through an executive order signed by Mayor Ed Koch in 1989, five years before Giuliani became mayor in January 1994. But if Giuliani inherited the policy, he reissued it and seemed to embrace it." (Jake Tapper and Ron Claiborne, "Romney: Giuliani's NYC 'Sanctuary' For Illegal Immigrants," ABC News, 8/8/07)

Giuliani: "New York City Will Create A Zone Of Protection For Illegal And Undocumented Immigrants." MAYOR RUDY GIULIANI: "I'm very pleased to have the opportunity to discuss the Welfare Act that was recently passed by Congress and signed into law by President Clinton. … There are aspects to the Welfare Reform Bill that, as just a matter of policy, I disagree with and I think could pose very serious problems, and although I do think the bill does some good, in the end I believe it does more harm than good. … But there is one aspect of the bill that has immediate application, and one that I believe raises serious constitutional and legal questions. And it is part of the Bill people pay very little attention to, and I'm not certain many knew it was in the bill when they passed it. It's a provision that attempts to reverse an executive order that New York City has had in existence since 1988 which basically says that New York City will create a zone of protection for illegal and undocumented immigrants who are seeking the protection of the police or seeking medical services because they are sick or attempting to or actually putting their children in public schools so they can be educated. New York City's Executive Order 124, signed by Mayor Koch in 1988 protected people in that endeavor by instructing employees of New York City that they are not to turn in those names into the Immigration and Naturalization Service." (Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Speech On The Welfare Act, 9/11/96; New York City Website,, Accessed 8/8/07)

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The chairman of the American Conservative Union--David Keene--endorsed Mitt Romney today:

"...the road that led me here today is one that many conservatives find themselves on and it is my hope that they will end up where I am today – convinced that Mitt Romney represents our best hope for 2008.

As this race began, I intended to remain neutral both because there was no conservative consensus candidate and because I know and admire several of those running for the Republican nomination who I believe could win next fall.

In recent months, however, Governor Romney has emerged as the single candidate most worthy of conservative support. That's why I'm endorsing him and intend to spend as much time as possible in the weeks ahead convincing my fellow conservatives that if we are serious about electing a conservative president in 2008, it's time to unite behind his candidacy."

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Here is what they're saying from the debate last night:

The Atlantic's Marc Ambinder: "Romney had a strong night, seemed raring to go, seemed to be willing to take on everybody, anybody, all comers, seemed to want to pick every fight possible." (Marc Ambinder, "The Debate In Review," The Atlantic Online Blog,, 11/28/07)

National Review's Seth Leibsohn: "This Is Mitt's Night." (Seth Leibsohn, "This Is Mitt's Night," National Review's The Corner,, Posted 11/28/07)

Bill Bennett: "I think that Romney stood out tonight. I think he was loud and clear. Conservative. He was 'all-in' as you'd say in Texas Hold 'Em." (CNN's Post-Debate Coverage, 11/28/07)

Bill Bennett: "I thought he came across very strong. I think you guys are absolutely right. That opening debate between Romney and Giuliani was, I think, the pivotal point of the evening. And I think points to Romney. Giuliani came across badly." (CNN's Post-Debate Coverage, 11/28/07)

ABC News Live Blog: "Romney is engaging very, very directly -- and dare I say he's getting the better of Giuliani in this exchange, funny accents and all." ("Live-Blogging During GOP Debate," ABC News' Political Radar,, Posted 11/28/07)

- ABC News Live Blog: "And Romney gets the first applause by noting that illegal immigrants already broke the law." ("Live-Blogging During GOP Debate," ABC News' Political Radar,, Posted 11/28/07)

National Review's Kathryn Jean Lopez: "[T]his is Romney's best debate performance yet. He reminds us he has experience and outside of Washington, he's tackled difficult issues, and does not let his temper get the best of him with a New York bully (something that will come in handy)." (Kathryn Jean Lopez, "So Far," National Review's The Corner,, Posted 11/28/07)

CNN's Bill Schneider: "A clever answer from former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney on farming. He says we need food independence like we need energy independence - keep the farmers on the farm. His reasoning: We need to be able to compete with other countries that support their farmers." (Bill Schneider, "Schneider: Romney Scores Points On Farming Answer," CNN's Political Ticker,, Posted 11/28/07)

MSNBC's Domenico Montanaro: "While the sanctuary mansion line got good laughs, Romney's explanation and questions left Giuliani without an answer." (Domenico Montanaro, "Giuliani Flustered?" MSNBC's First Read,, Posted 11/28/07)

National Review's Rich Lowry: "Rudy let his temper get the best of him - clear winner of the exchange: Romney." (Rich Lowry, "Mitt V. Rudy," National Review's The Corner,, Posted 11/28/07)

National Review's Seth Leibsohn: "I'd be surprised after this debate if Mitt doesn't see national numbers looking more like his Iowa or NH numbers after tonight's performance. Brilliant response to the black on black crime questions." (Seth Leibsohn, "Changing Times," National Review's The Corner,, Posted 11/28/07)

The New York Times' Katharine Q. Seelye: "But finally, a father-son team, from Atlanta, want the candidates to talk about black-on-black crime, and while Mr. Romney gets in a nice line about mothers and fathers and family values, none of the candidates really address the issue that the young son raised." (Katharine Q. Seelye, "Live-Blogging the YouTube Debate," The New York Times' The Caucus Blog,, Posted 11/28/07)

National Review's Ramesh Ponnuru: "So Romney did pretty well in the debate, and won the immigration exchange." (Ramesh Ponnuru, "A Good Day for Giuliani," National Review's The Corner,, Posted 11/28/07)

Townhall's Mary Katharine Ham: "Mitt makes a good point that homeowners should not be required to check papers of workers hired for their and connects it to regular Americans by suggesting that that's what Rudy wants them to do." (Townhall,, Accessed, 11/28/07)

The Plank's Isaac Chotiner: "Romney definitely got the best of Giuliani on their early immigration skirmish (which actually got rather heated). Rudy's line about Romney's mansion was cheap and silly. And Romney is more appealing when going negative than any of the other candidates." (The New Republic's "The Plank,", Accessed, 11/28/07)

National Review's Kate O'Beirne: "Romney's reference point about how MA liberals reason is effective. Reminds us that he gets them and fought them." (National Review's "The Corner,", Accessed 11/28/07)

Captain's Quarters' Ed Morrissey: Romney and Huckabee had a good spar over giving better benefits to illegals for school than to citizens. Romney is absolutely 100% right on this issue. I hope Iowans realize that Huckabee may very well be worse than Bush on illegal immigration." (Heading Right,, Accessed 11/28/07)

National Review's Kate O'Beirne: "Romney's performance is his strongest in the series." (National Review's The Corner,, Accessed 11/28/07)

Michelle Malkin: "So, who won? Quick and dirty reaction: Romney looked strong and energetic ..." (Michelle Malkin, "Liveblogging The CNN/Youtube,", Posted 11/28/07)

Townhall's Mary Katherine Ham: "[Romney] came across serious and conservative." (Mary Katharine Ham, "Who Won?,", 11/28/07)

The American Spectator's Philip Klein: "... I thought Romney got the better of that [immigration] exchange. It's one thing to use Romney's illegal immigrant lawn care workers in a joke, but it's another thing to try and base a serious criticism on that." (Philip Klein, "Sanctuary Mansion," The American Spectator, 11/28/07)

CBS' Vaughn Ververs: "In the opening minutes, Romney and Rudy Giuliani sparred over illegal immigration... Romney appeared to get the upper hand in the exchange, challenging Giuliani on his charge and the sometimes vocal audience sounded a note of apparent disapproval at the mayor's line of attack." (Vaughn Ververs, "Romney Battles, Huckabee Shines In GOP Debate," CBS' Horserace '08 Blog,, Posted 11/28/07)

Captain's Quarters' Ed Morrissey: "Romney gets the edge here, especially for beating Rudy Giuliani like a bongo drum on immigration." (Ed Morrissey, "CNN/YouTube Debate – CNN Wins," Captain's Quarters,, Posted 11/28/07)

- Morrissey: "Romney has this issue [of interrogations] exactly correct. We should not start defining these techniques on national debates for the reasons Romney said." (Heading Right,, Accessed 11/28/07)

Power Line's Scott Johnson: "Best performance: Mitt Romney." (Scott Johnson, "Best And Worst Of The Debate," Power Line,, Posted 11/28/07)

- Johnson: "Best line of the night: Mitt Romney, on abortion ('I was wrong')." (Scott Johnson, "Best And Worst Of The Debate," Power Line,, Posted 11/28/07)

National Review's Kathryn Jean Lopez: "Romney played it straight and didn't over explain the abortion change. Seemed a wise and effective approach, especially in this format." (National Review's The Corner,, Accessed 11/28/07)

Heading Right's Macranger: "Good answer [on life]. People do change." (Heading Right,, Accessed 11/28/07)

The American Spectator's Philip Klein: "[Gov. Romney] showed more humility by saying several times he was wrong, that he isn't perfect, that he hasn't always made the right decisions. It worked a lot better for him." (Philip Klein, "Romney's Abortion Flip-Flop Answer," The American Spectator, 11/28/07)

Townhall's Hugh Hewitt: "I agree with most of the posters at The Corner that Mitt is doing very, very well." (, Accessed 11/28/07)

Former Secretary Of Education Bill Bennett: "Mitt Romney talked about education as the next civil right...Liberals have failed inner city blacks overwhelmingly in the last 30 years. That's why the question from the father and son was so pertinent and I thought Romney did a good job on it." (CNN's "Post Debate Coverage," 11/28/07)

Townhall's Mary Katharine Ham: "... I grew up in the inner city, in public schools. The plight of those who live there is real, sad, and cannot often be solved by the Nanny State. Romney focuses on families, empowerment, police protection in solving black-on-black crime, and invokes Bill Cosby. Well done. It addressed the question directly and treated the questioners' concerns with respect. It was a serious answer with real application, not a flippant appeal to the family values crowd that would have made him look disconnected, which it easily could have been." (Mary Katharine Ham, "Romney's Winner Answer on Black-on-Black Crime,",, 11/28/07)

The American Spectator's John Tabin: "Romney's answer is pretty good; family's important, of course it is" (James G. Poulos, "Black On Black Crime," The American Spectator, 11/28/07)


Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Politico is breaking a story that New York taxpayers financed Rudy's extramarital affair back in 2001 that has been obscured until now through some shady bookkeeping. Read the whole story here.

Is this the guy we want representing the GOP and who can take on the baggage of the Clintons?

More fact-twisting from Rudy via

Rudy Giuliani's latest TV ad falsely claims New York City experienced "record crime ... until Rudy." In fact, the city recorded its highest rates of both violent crime and property crime years before he took office. The downward trend was well established before he was sworn in.

The ad also claims New York is "America's most liberal city," but his campaign offers no evidence showing that the city is more liberal than, say, San Francisco; Berkeley; Washington, D.C.; or Detroit, all of which rank as more liberal in a study of voting behavior in the 2004 elections. In that study, New York ranked 21st among cities with populations of more than 100,000.

Giuliani's ad also repeats some boasts we've found to be misleading in the past. It claims he cut taxes by $9 billion but counts several tax cuts that he didn't initiate or sign, and one that he lobbied against before changing course. It also boasts that he cut welfare rolls by 60 percent but fails to note that the reduction in New York was a bit less than it was for the nation as a whole.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Rudy's spewing the lies again...

Last night, Howard Nemerov at the Media Research Council’s NewsBusters blog reviewed Governor Romney’s record on violent crime and found that “the overall [violent] rate dropped 7.8% from 484.9 in 2002 to 447.0 in 2006.” He concludes, “No matter the comparison––total incidents or rates per 100,000 population––Giuliani was wrong to state that Massachusetts saw a violent crime increase while Romney was governor.”

And this morning, in an appearance on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe,” Mayor Giuliani distorted Governor Romney’s record again. While Mayor Giuliani has apparently recognized his earlier error and dropped any reference to overall violent crime, Mayor Giuliani did claim that “aggravated assault … went up while he was governor.”

RUDY GIULIANI: Boston Herald had a big piece on this about two months ago; crime, murder, aggravated assault, burglary all went up while he was governor. In the case of robbery, it went up 12%. And those are all areas in which while I was mayor of New York, those categories went down by 70%. So there's a big difference in his record as a governor, which in the area of these violent crimes was very poor as the Boston Herald pointed out, and my record as mayor was one of the best records from the point of view of safety and security in the country.

On the contrary, as the same NewsBusters post points out from FBI data, “aggravated assault decreased 14.8%” during Governor Romney’s term. Just another example of Mayor Giuliani’s “fuzzy math.”

Monday, November 26, 2007

Bob Novak has a new piece out on Mike Huckabee, calling him the false conservative:

WASHINGTON -- Who would respond to criticism from the Club for Growth by calling the conservative, free-market campaign organization the "Club for Greed"? That sounds like Howard Dean, Dennis Kucinich or John Edwards, all Democrats preaching the class struggle. In fact, the rejoinder comes from Mike Huckabee, who has broken out of the pack of second-tier Republican presidential candidates to become a serious contender -- definitely in Iowa and perhaps nationally.

Huckabee is campaigning as a conservative, but serious Republicans know that he is a high-tax, protectionist, big-government advocate of a strong hand in the Oval Office directing the lives of Americans. Until now, they did not bother to expose the former governor of Arkansas as a false conservative because he seemed an underfunded, unknown nuisance candidate. Now that he has pulled even with Mitt Romney for the Iowa caucuses with the possibility of more progress, the beleaguered Republican Party has a frightening problem on its hands.

The rise of evangelical Christians as the motive force that blasted the GOP out of minority status during the past generation always contained an inherent danger if these new Republican acolytes supported not merely a conventional conservative but one of their own. That has happened now with Huckabee, a former Baptist minister educated at Ouachita Baptist University and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. The danger is a serious contender for the nomination who passes the litmus test of social conservatives on abortion, gay marriage and gun control but is far removed from the conservative-libertarian model of Barry Goldwater and Ronald Reagan.

There is no doubt about Huckabee's record during a decade in Little Rock as governor. He was regarded by fellow Republican governors as a compulsive tax increaser and spender. He increased the Arkansas tax burden by 47 percent, boosting the levies on gasoline and cigarettes. When he decided to lose 100 pounds and pressed his new lifestyle on the American people, he was far from a Goldwater-Reagan libertarian.

As a presidential candidate, Huckabee has sought to counteract his reputation as a taxer by pressing for replacement of the income tax with a sales tax and has more recently signed the no-tax-increase pledge of Americans for Tax Reform. But Huckabee simply does not fit in normal boundaries of economic conservatism, as when he criticized President Bush's veto of a Democratic expansion of the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP). Calling global warming a "moral issue" mandating "a biblical duty" to prevent climate change, he has endorsed the cap-and-trade system that is anathema to the free market.

Huckabee clearly departs from the mainstream of the conservative movement in his confusion of "growth" with "greed." Such ad hominem attacks are part of his intuitive response to criticism from the Club for Growth and the libertarian Cato Institute for his record as governor. On Fox News Sunday Nov. 18, he called the "tactics" of the Club for Growth "some of the most despicable in politics today. It's why I love to call them the Club for Greed because they won't tell you who gave their money." In fact, all contributors to the organization's political action committee (which produces campaign ads) are publicly revealed, as are most donors financing issue ads.

Quin Hillyer, a former Arkansas journalist writing in the conservative American Spectator, called Huckabee "a guy with a thin skin, a nasty vindictive streak." Huckabee's retort was to attack Hillyer's journalistic procedures, fitting a mean-spirited image when he responds to conservative criticism.

Nevertheless, he is getting remarkably warm reviews in the news media as the most humorous, entertaining and interesting GOP presidential hopeful. Contrary to descriptions by old associates, he is now called "jovial" or "good-natured." Any Republican who does not sound much like a Republican is bound to benefit from friendly media support, as Sen. John McCain did in 2000 but not today with his return to being more like a conventional Republican.
An uncompromising foe of abortion can never enjoy full media backing. But Mike Huckabee is getting enough favorable buzz that, when combined with his evangelical base, it makes real conservatives shudder.

The only thing I take issue with in this sobering piece is the claim, by Novak, that Huckabee has pulled to an even position with Romney in Iowa. The very link in his article for that claim goes to the RCP's average, which gives Romney a 7 point lead, and never has Huckabee even tied with him in any of the polls, so Novak's assertion is perplexing.

Character counts in elections. Here is a glimpse of Rudy from Newsweek:

On Sept. 16, 1992, the police in New York City held a rally that spun out of control. The cops wanted a new collective-bargaining agreement, and they were angry at Mayor David Dinkins for proposing a civilian review board and for refusing to issue patrolmen 9mm guns. More than a few of them tipsy or drunk, the cops jumped on cars near city hall and blocked traffic near the Brooklyn Bridge. According to some witnesses, they waved placards crudely mocking Mayor Dinkins, the first black mayor of New York, on racial grounds, while at the same time chanting "Rudy! Rudy! Rudy!" to welcome Rudy Giuliani, the crime-busting former U.S. attorney who had arrived in their midst to shore up his political base.

It is not clear Giuliani knew exactly what he was getting himself into—he later denied that he did—but video shows him wildly gesticulating and shouting a profanity-laced diatribe against Dinkins...

Loyalty has always been the greatest virtue to Giuliani, sometimes trumping all others. By loyalty, Giuliani's critics contend, he means "loyalty to Rudy." Disloyal subordinates learned this the hard way, even if they thought they were serving some higher master, like truth and justice. By the early '80s, Giuliani had risen to claim a top job in the Reagan administration Justice Department. At the time, the department was investigating McDonnell Douglas, the aircraft manufacturer, for making foreign bribes. Without telling career prosecutors who had been working on the case for months, Giuliani met with McDonnell Douglas defense lawyers. The career prosecutors were upset that a top official had gone over their heads, and wrote a letter to Giuliani expressing "shock" and "dismay," and warning that his secret meeting with the defense could undermine the prosecution's case. The letter leaked. Giuliani summoned the prosecutors, Michael Lubin and George Mendelson, to his office—and exploded.

"As far as I'm concerned, we were watching a madman," Lubin told Jim Stewart for his book "The Prosecutors." "I've never heard or seen anything like it, even in the movies . He ranted and raved for a full twenty minutes." Giuliani, who later dropped criminal indictments against four McDonnell Douglas executives as part of a plea agreement in which the company paid $1.2 million in fines, dismissed Lubin and Mendelson as "jerks." With petty vindictiveness, he withdrew a special Justice Department commendation awarded the two prosecutors...

"Loyalty to Giuliani means staying out of his limelight. Police Commissioner William Bratton discovered that in January 1996, when he made the mistake of posing for the cover of Time magazine in a trench coat to tout New York's astonishing success at fighting crime. Giuliani was not pleased; he ordered city hall's lawyers to start investigating Bratton's expenses, and the commissioner was gone in a couple of months... In truth, both men deserve credit for New York's turnaround. Bratton was a vocal apostle of the "broken window" theory of crime—that small acts of vandalism can create a lawless climate conducive to bigger crimes."

Giuliani never found an equal to Bratton. The next commissioner, Howard Safir, was regarded as a "Yes Rudy" who tried too hard to please his master. ("I am very loyal to Rudy," Safir tells NEWSWEEK. "However, when I disagreed with him … I made sure I did it in private.") The police stepped up their stop-and-frisk campaign in poor, largely minority neighborhoods. A series of ugly police-brutality cases besmirched Giuliani's crimefighting record and alienated blacks and Hispanics. In 2000, when an undercover narcotics detective killed an unarmed security guard named Patrick Dorismond, who was black, Giuliani scoffed that Dorismond was no "altar boy." Actually, he was an altar boy—and had attended Bishop Loughlin high school.

What a colossal mistake it would be to make this man our President.

Thanks to for the info, Romney is tied for first in the latest South Carolina poll (putting him ahead of Thompson for the RCP average of polls in that state), and would beat Hillary by 7 points in Florida if the election were held today.

Rudy's caught in another lie:

Giuliani Falsely Claims That "Violent Crime" Went Up In Massachusetts:

Yesterday, Giuliani Falsely Claimed That "Violent Crime" Went Up In Massachusetts.

"'Gov. Romney did not have a good record in dealing with violent crime.' Giuliani pulled a sheet of paper out of his pocket that listed FBI crime statistics for Massachusetts while Romney was governor. Murders were up 7.5 percent, robbery was up 12 percent, he said. 'He had an increase in murder and violent crime while he was governor,' Giuliani said. 'So it's not so much the isolated situation which he and the judge will have to explain _ he's kind of thrown her under the bus, so it's hard to know how this is all going to come out. But the reality is, he did not have a record of reducing violent crime.'" (Charles Babington, "Romney Calls On Judge He Appointed To Resign After Washington State Murders," The Associated Press, 11/24/07)

FACT: According To The FBI Statistics, Overall "Violent Crime" Decreased In Massachusetts Under Governor Romney: Under Governor Romney, the violent crime rate in Massachusetts decreased by over 7%. The violent crime rate was lower than the national average. Prior to Governor Romney, the violent crime rate was increasing.

FACT: According To FBI Statistics, The Overall Crime Rate Decreased In Massachusetts Under Governor Romney: Under Governor Romney, The Overall Crime Rate Fell By 8% Over His Four Years In Office. "Car thefts and larcenies also were down, in line with national trends, and helped contribute to an overall 8 percent decline in crime during Romney's four years, according to the FBI stats." (Dave Wedge, "Crime Up During Romney Tenure," The Boston Herald, 9/26/07)

FACT: According To FBI Statistics, Other Crimes Were Down Under Governor Romney (2002-2006):

- Assaults Down 15%. (FBI Crime in the United States Website,, Accessed 10/12/07)

- Rape Down 2%. (FBI Crime in the United States Website,, Accessed 10/12/07)

- Larceny/Theft Down 6%. (FBI Crime in the United States Website,, Accessed 10/12/07)

- Motor Vehicle Theft Down 32%. (FBI Crime in the United States Website,, Accessed 10/12/07)

Friday, November 23, 2007

This is the kind of thinking we need in Washington (from the Michael Medved show):

Medved: "Amen to that. What about specific government programs that ought to be terminated? I know that's a tough question for a candidate, but I know you deal familiarly as a business executive with tough questions. Where are there some government programs where we just ought to cut them dead?

Governor Romney: "Well, I've got a list of all of the government programs where there is duplication from one agency to another. There are some 342 different economic development programs. We have over 100 different job training programs. We have 13 teenage pregnancy prevention programs. The duplication that is suggested by those kind of numbers suggests that you can cut dramatically back on those programs, and you can consolidate programs and end up with something that has far less bureaucracy and is able to do the job for a lot less money. But the problem in Washington is, once somebody gets a program started that has their name attached to it, they never want to kill it. And I intend to go through the entire federal government, agency by agency, program by program, rank them, determine which ones are working, which ones aren't, which ones can be combined with others and eliminate programs one after the other. And those three areas I gave you are places I know I'd be eliminating."

Thursday, November 22, 2007 points out Huckabee's yarns about his fiscal record:

Republican presidential candidate Mike Huckabee has been hit with criticism over his record on taxes as governor of Arkansas. The faultfinders have been members of his own party, who take issue with tax increases he enacted. In recent interviews on Fox News, Huckabee responded to some of these questions, but we found him to be misleading and incorrect on several points:

Huckabee claimed that a speech in which he implored the state Legislature to raise taxes was in response to a state Supreme Court order to increase education funding. But he specifically said in that speech that he would address the education matter at a later date.

He said a tax on beds filled in nursing homes was a "fee" not a tax, despite the fact that he himself has called it the "bed tax."

Huckabee claimed a gasoline tax was only passed after 80 percent of voters approved it. Not true. The tax was enacted before a referendum vote on highway repairs.

He frequently says he cut taxes "almost 94 times" but leaves out the 21 taxes raised during his tenure. In the end, he presided over a net tax increase.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

I don't know that you can accurately judge a candidate by the type of people who support him/her, but this is interesting regarding Ron Paul supporters:

He may be the Republican version of Howard Dean in this election cycle, creating an impressive online fundraising base made up of Net-savvy activists. But Ron Paul is having a hard time keeping his cyber-supporters in civil debate mode.

Indeed, things have gotten so bad that a growing number of political blogs and discussion boards — not exactly prime outlets of delicacy in public-spirited discourse — have taken the drastic step of barring especially vocal backers of the Texas congressman from their ranks. Two high-profile conservative blogs, and, have issued selective bans on the more disruptive Paul supporters trolling the sites. And this month, Bobby Eberle, who runs the site, addressed an open letter to Paul backers urging civility.

Eberle’s letter took pains to note that he wasn’t singling out Paul supporters per se but rather “the aggressive network of online fans who bombard discussion boards, spam Web sites, flood online polls, and behave in a manner that puts their candidate in an extremely bad light.”

Eberle says that in seven years of running, he’s never come across users as routinely abusive as Paul backers can be. “The typical e-mail from a Ron Paul supporter often contains profanity and is filled with name-calling and attacks on the other candidates,” he says. “They throw out slurs such as ‘neo-con’ or ‘fake Republican’ or ‘sheeple’ or ‘jerks’ or worse. They say people are ‘stupid,’ ‘idiots,’ ‘traitors,’ and worse for not supporting Ron Paul .”...

Meanwhile, last month, barred newly registered users from writing any pro-Paul commentary on the site. “Effective immediately, new users may not shill for Ron Paul in any way shape, form or fashion. Not in comments, not in diaries, nada,” wrote Leon Wolf, a senior editor for the Web site.

Wolf added that the reason for the change was his view that backers of the libertarian Paul — who, unlike most Republicans, has always opposed the Iraq War and opposes federal laws criminalizing drugs — are “a bunch of liberals pretending to be Republicans.”

Likewise, dropped Paul’s name from its online polls in May after Paul backers racked up another win by alerting colleagues to vote on the site. Site operator Charles Johnson acknowledged that they hadn’t cheated by voting more than one time but said they had clearly skewed the results through their get-out-the-vote campaign. “ Ron Paul ’s supporters are becoming notorious for sleazy, essentially stupid tactics like this,” he wrote.

At a recent campaign stop Obama admitted to students that when he was in high school he drank and used illegal drugs, including cocaine. Here's the reaction to this by Rudy and Mitt, illuminating the difference between the character of these two men:

Rudy: “I respect his honesty in doing that. I think that one of the things we need from our people who are running for office is not this pretense of perfection.”

Mitt: “It’s just not a good idea for people running for president of the United States who potentially could be the role model for a lot of people to talk about their personal failings while they were kids because it opens the doorway to other kids thinking, ‘well I can do that too.’”

Rudy can't take a moral stance because, well, his past actions demonstrate a lack of morals. And telling people about your past crimes and transgressions, but not really showing any negative side effects for your poor decisions, opens the door to others thinking they can follow those same footsteps without consequences.

Having Rudy has president of the United States would be as disasterous a role model for the youth of this country as was Bill Clinton, and I cannot vote for him in good conscience. If Rudy somehow wins the GOP nomination (I don't think he will), I will vote for a third candidate even if that means helping the Democratic party's nominee win the election. Maybe that will help the GOP learn to avoid picking immoral candidates in the future.

A new poll has Mitt in the lead (though technically a statistical tie) in South Carolina:

Mitt Romney - 20%
Rudy Giuliani - 19%
John McCain - 17%
Fred Thompson - 13%
Mike Huckabee - 8%
Ron Paul - 3%
Duncan Hunter - 1%
Tom Tancredo - 0%
Undecided - 18%

It doesn't seem the two southerners are catching on in the South.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Romney's up in the latest New Hampshire poll, with Rudy and Thompson dropping, and McCain with no change:

Romney--33% (+8% from September)
McCain--18% (no change)
Rudy--16% (-8%)
Paul--8% (+4%)
Huckabee--5% (+2%)
Thompson--4% (-9%)
Hunter--less than 1%

As far as the GOP candidate that New Hamshire Republicans would not support under any circumstance:


Now, for some thoughts. My guess is Ron Paul is taking votes from McCain--the GOP-leaining independents--because Paul is against the war and McCain is obviously for it.

Also, is Thompson's campaign over? He's in sixth place, just 3% above Tom Tancredo.

And if Huckabee can't even beat Ron Paul, he is no where near being a top-tier candidate.

Why does Hillary use criminals to bring in donations for her? This is the second one in the last few months. See here for the story from CNN.

While for some Mike Huckabee seems to be the conservative flavor of the month, more and more is being revealed about him as the national spotlight turns to his record as governor. Here are some interesting tidbits from an article entitled, "The Dark Side of Mike Huckabee," by the editor of the Arkansas Times (thanks to My Man Mitt for the scoop).

His administration paid $15,000 to settle a suit filed by Roby Brock, the host of a public TV news show whom Huckabee's people tried to force off the air for his critical commentary...

Huckabee seems to love loot and has a dismissive attitude toward ethics, campaign finance rules and propriety in general. Since that first, failed campaign, the ethical questions have multiplied.

I n the 1992 contest with Bumpers, Huckabee used campaign funds to pay himself as his own media consultant. Other payments went to the family babysitter.

In his successful 1994 run for lieutenant governor, he set up a nonprofit curtain known as Action America so he could give speeches for money without having to disclose the names of his benefactors. He failed to report that campaign travel payments were for the use of his own personal plane.

After he became governor in 1996, he raked in tens of thousands of dollars in gifts, including gifts from people he later appointed to prestigious state commissions.

In the governor's office, his grasp never exceeded his reach. Furniture he'd received to doll up his office was carted out with him when he left, after he'd crushed computer hard drives so nobody could ever get a peek behind the curtain of the Huckabee administration.

Until my paper, the Arkansas Times, blew the whistle, he converted a governor's mansion operating account into a personal expense account, claiming public money for a doghouse, dry-cleaning bills, panty hose and meals at Taco Bell. He tried to claim $70,000 in furnishings provided by a wealthy cotton grower for the private part of the residence as his own, until he learned ethics rules prevented it. When a disgruntled former employee disclosed memos revealing all this, the Huckabee camp shut her up by repeatedly suggesting she might be vulnerable to prosecution for theft because she'd shared documents generated by the state's highest official.

He ran the State Police airplane into the ground, many of the miles in pursuit of political ends. Inauguration funds were used to buy clothing for his wife. He once took control of the state Republican Party's campaign account -- then swore the account had been somebody else's responsibility when it ran afoul of federal election laws. He repeated the pattern when he claimed in a newspaper story that his staff controlled the account to stage his second inauguration. When I filed a formal ethics complaint over what appeared to be an improper appropriation of donated money, he told a different story, disavowing responsibility for the money. He thus avoided another punishment from an Ethics Commission, which had sanctioned him on five other occasions. He dodged nine other complaints (though none, despite his counter-complaints, was held to be frivolous). In one case, he was saved by the swing vote of a woman who left the chairmanship of the Ethics Commission days later to take a state job. She listed the governor as a reference on the job application. Finally, unbelievably, Huckabee once sued to overturn the ban on gifts to him...

Truth is, we were happy to be thrown into the governor's briar patch. The world is full of disaffected Huckabee campaign workers, former employees and garden-variety Republicans who love to pass on tips about a governor they'd found self-centered and untrustworthy. If you think he left a well of warm feelings in Arkansas, note that Hillary Clinton had raised more money in Arkansas at last report and that a recent University of Arkansas Poll showed her a 35 to 8 percent leader over Huckabee in the presidential preferences of Arkansas residents. Only one-third of 33 Republican legislators have said they will support him for president...

Three decades after the Huckabees' wedding, his wife registered at department stores so their new home, post-governor's mansion, could be stocked with gifts of linens, toasters and other suitable furnishings. In early 2007, our reporting also prompted the former first lady to decline dozens of place settings of governor's mansion china and Irish crystal that had been purchased with tax-deductible contributions to the Governor's Mansion Association, nominally set up to improve the mansion, not to buy going-away presents for former occupants. (Huckabee's governorship ended on Jan. 9, 2007.)...

He raised taxes for schools, highways and children's health. Inevitably, this expanded government. I say bravo on all counts, though the conservative Club for Growth has delighted in quoting my liberal newspaper when it attacks Huckabee's fiscal record.

He was kind to immigrants and favored state help for college-going children of illegal immigrants. He once even briefly departed from Republican dogma to suggest to a newspaper in libertarian New Hampshire that, while he opposed gay marriage, he was open to civil unions. He's since denied he ever intended such apostasy, but the comment is on tape. At the Arkansas Times, we welcomed the governor's conversion to devoted school consolidator. When our state system of school finance was ruled unconstitutional, he initially decried the ruling as a usurpation of local control. But he flip-flopped -- and we applauded the somersault -- and led his Education Department to a significant reduction in the number of tiny, inefficient school districts and on the path to more demanding graduation standards.

But a paddling administered by a brute who sometimes smiles still hurts. Huckabee insists he's not one of those harsh, punitive, "angry" conservatives, but again, there are witnesses who might say otherwise if anyone's interested...

He professed opposition to alcohol and gambling, but he allowed passage of legislation that made it easier for restaurants to obtain private-club mixed-drink permits in dry counties. Over the angry objection of the church lobby, he sped final action on a bill to allow video poker at the state's racetracks, an act followed not long afterward by a $10,000 campaign contribution from the owner of the state's biggest race track, at Oaklawn Park in Hot Springs.

All this is sometimes done with humor, but rarely the sort of gentle humor the national media has encountered. Huckabee prefers sarcastic putdowns and hyperbole...

He is not the man of principle that credulous commentators describe. Though Huckabee doesn't support embryonic stem cell research, he took a hefty honorarium and bulk book sales this year from a diabetes drug maker, Novo Nordisk, which performs embryonic stem cell research. He has lied when there's been no other way around admitting embarrassing missteps, such as his advocacy of freedom for a convicted rapist.

There are also legitimate questions about his skills as a manager. He left Arkansas with a bill of more than $40 million for overcharges of the federal government's Medicaid program. A State Police director left after a tiff over Huckabee's demand that the agency improve his private lake property in the name of security. Troubles dogged both the state's computer services agency and its workforce agency. Youth services have been an unending series of tragedies. The buck never stopped at Huck's desk, you can be sure.

The governor's office records -- triumph and tragedy, sage advice and venom-filled screeds about members of the press and Legislature -- would tell this tale. But, as I've mentioned, the computer hard drive destruction ensured that would never happen.
If I could resurrect one batch of files, it would be those reflecting the advice of his staff that he not pursue his desire to free convicted rapist Wayne DuMond. By "advice," I mean I think some of them all but pleaded with Huckabee not to do it.

Though DuMond's prior record included a conviction for assault and his alleged involvement in a slaying and one other rape, by the start of Huckabee's governorship DuMond had become a national figure thanks to Republican efforts to depict him as a victim of the Bill Clinton machine. The rape victim was a distant relative of Clinton's.

Huckabee, perhaps persuaded by DuMond's supposed conversion to Christianity, announced his intention to commute DuMond's sentence without talking to the victim. Outraged, she stepped forward to protest publicly. The backlash was swift and powerful. Huckabee backed away from commuting DuMond's sentence, but in a private meeting lobbied the state Parole Board to release him. Huckabee said, in writing, that he supported DuMond's release. DuMond moved to Missouri in 2000, where he molested and killed one woman and was suspected of doing the same to another, but died in prison before he could be charged in the second case.

To this day, Huckabee tries to minimize his responsibility for DuMond's release. Huckabee's 2007 book "From Hope to Higher Ground" also fudges the facts, implying that DuMond died before being convicted of either Missouri murder. In one recent interview, he even suggested that he had fought DuMond's parole, a statement his own writings prove to be a lie.

Speaking of Huckabee's writings: I'd recommend the Huckabee catalog to the national press. It's a ready representation of the man -- quip-filled, shallow, factually challenged and full of the chip-on-the-shoulder mentality that has marked so much of his public life. In "Character Is the Issue," published in 1997, he complained bitterly about how some congregants of the Baptist church he left in Texarkana to seek public office didn't want to continue paying his health insurance. Funny, no employer of mine ever kept paying me after I quit work.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Ron Paul has heavily criticised the U.S. Treasury. Now some of his supporters are illegally coining money with his image on it. Interesting...

Some candidate is spreading anti-Mormon messages under the guise of conducting a poll (its called "push polling") in Iowa and New Hampshire. Initial reports linked it to John McCain, then it was discovered that the firm doing the polling has done work for Rudy's campaign, though both deny any involvement.

Read the whole article here.

Monday, November 12, 2007

The Washington Post is reporting a new Rasmussen Poll showing that Romney, for the first time, is seen as a conservative candidate by the largest percentage of the population polled:

Romney 46 percent
Thompson 40 percent
Huckabee 38 percent
McCain 28 percent
Giuliani 21 percent
Paul 16 percent

I wonder if that's because he's the only candidate who pushing the three-legged of Reagan conservatism.

New polls look good:

Among Republican voters, former Tennessee Sen. and Law & Order star Fred Thompson is proving to be nowhere near the force many had expected when he entered the race in September.

The poll showed him in fifth place with 8 percent support, behind former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, with 9 percent, McCain with 12 percent, Mitt Romney with 19 percent and Giuliani with 36 percent in the state he declares a must-win...

Romney, already in a dead heat with Giuliani in the Tampa Bay area and the eastern end of the Interstate 4 corridor, at this point is positioned to sweep all those early states and ride a giant wave of momentum into Florida.

"If Romney is able to sweep through the opening first states, Giuliani is going to have to throw everything he has at Romney, and Romney is going to have the opportunity to deliver," said pollster Tom Eldon. "I don't want to call it the coup de grace in Florida, but something very, very close."

And New Hampshire:

Thirty-two percent of New Hampshire Republicans surveyed said they support former Massachusetts Governor Romney, compared with 20 percent for former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani and 17 percent for Arizona Senator John McCain.

And New Hampshire again:

In a poll of likely New Hampshire Republican primary voters in October, Romney had a 6 percentage point lead. That number has increased to 11 percent according to Marist's latest poll.

In the latest poll, Romney got 33 percent support, to Giuliani's 22 percent. Senator John McCain, R-Arizona, had 13 percent support in the latest poll, with Rep. Ron Paul, R-Texas, and former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee both registering 7 percent support. Former Tennessee senator Fred Thompson had 5 percent support in the latest poll.

Good news for Romney from Arizona's western neighbor (thanks to EFM for the tip):

Mitt Romney has had a great week in California.

First, on Wednesday night, the Young Republican Federation of California's Board of Directors voted to endorse the Romney campaign - becoming the first grassroots group in the state to endorse Governor Romney.

To add to that, just minutes ago, the California Republican Assembly joined the YRFC by overwhelmingly voting to endorse the Romney campaign.

By a vote of 148 - 73, CRA took a big step in showing clearly that the conservative base of the Republican Party is coalescing around Governor Romney.

Primary elections are traditionally dominated by the bases of each Party - and within California, there aren't more representitive voices of the conservative base than YRFC and CRA.

Friday, November 02, 2007

Here are some interesting results from a GOP focus group:

Romney: "leader," "principled," "good," "smart," and "articulate."

Thompson: "grandfather," "father," "conservative," "soft spoken," "good," and "confident."

Giuliani: "good," "cocky," "cold," "confident," and "liberal."

Huckabee: "don't know," "funny name," "Christian," "conservative," "good man," and "fair tax."

McCain: "Vietnam," "strong," and "confident."

No one had views on Tancredo and Hunter, and Paul drew just one response: "too weak on national security."

Interesting that Romney was the only candidate to be called a leader, and to be seen as principled, smart and articulate. Now who's going to beat Hillary? A "cocky liberal" (Guiliani), a "soft spoken grandfather" (Thompson--is he actually a grandfather?), a "confident Vietnam" (McCain), or a "don't know funny name fair tax" (Huckabee)?

I'm going with the principled, smart, articulate leader.

This speaks volumes about Hillary from MNBC's First Read:

Fournier also writes this: "Clinton's advisers, speaking on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to discuss internal matters, said there is a clear and long-planned strategy to fend off attacks by accusing her male rivals of gathering against her. The idea is to change the subject while making Clinton a sympathetic figure, especially among female voters who often feel outnumbered and bullied on the job."

That won't work in the general election though, because there is only going to be one opponent attacking her.

I had read this on the Five Brothers Blog at Romney's website, but had forgotten about it until reminded by MyManMitt. Here's the stark contrast to the Romney and Guiliani campaigns:

My message (Tagg Romney) could be summed up, as reported in the AP, as, "Personally, I think the best way to beat Hillary Clinton is not to water down our values, or to try to act more like Hillary Clinton, or try to blur the distinction between Republicans and Democrats," Romney said. "I think we need a strong Republican."

Rudy's representative, Kevin Cramer, spoke after I did, and said the following, also reported by the AP, "We are here to choose a candidate who can win next November. It does us no good to stand on our beautiful, wonderful principles, and lose to Hillary Clinton."

The thing that Rudy doesn't understand (besides what principles are) is that one wins because of principles, not despite them, but I don't expect him to understand that. Given our recent history with a president who placed expediency over principle (see Clinton and Lewinsky), would a Rudy White House be that much different than a Clinton White House?

A recent poll out of South Carolina adds to the building evidence debunking Guiliani's main myth (and main plank of his candidacy) that he's the most electable Republican in the general election:

In a head-to-head match up between Rudy Giuliani and Hillary Clinton, 7.6% of Democrats would cross over to vote for Rudy versus only 5.1% of Republican crossing for Hillary, a net 2.5% gain for Giuliani. However, that gain would be offset by the fact that more than 1 in 10 Republicans (11.2%) said they would vote for "neither" candidate or plain "wouldn't vote" in a Rudy-Hillary scenario, while only 4.9% of Democrats indicated they would do the same.

South Carolina isn't alone. Throughout more conservative states, enough voters will vote for a third-party candidate or not vote at all if Guiliani is the GOP's nominee. That means will we saying President Hillary for the next four years.

The poll also had Romney in a statistical tie for first place:

New Winthrop /ETV poll in South Carolina (Oct 7-28, 522 likely GOP primary voters, MoE 4.29%, and 534 likely Democratic primary voters, MoE 4.24%).

The big news in the poll comes on the Republican side, where Romney, Giuliani and Thompson are in a statistical tie for the lead, with nearly 1 in 3 likely primary voters still undecided:

Thompson 17.9
Giuliani 16.5
Romney 16.5
McCain 9.2
Huckabee 5.4
Paul 2.1
Undecided 29.9