McCain Makes Dramatic Recovery In New Hampshire
John McCain of Arizona, whose bid for the Republican presidential nomination was all but dead this summer, has made a dramatic recovery in the Granite State 2 1/2 weeks before the 2008 vote, and now trails frontrunner Mitt Romney by only 3 points. The poll, conducted from Dec. 16 to Dec. 20, has a margin of error for each party subsample of plus or minus 4.9 percentage points. Mitt Romney has the support of 28 percent of Republicans, followed by McCain at 25 percent and a fading Rudy Giuliani at 14 percent. The Globe poll last month had Romney at 32 percent, Giuliani at 20 percent, and McCain at 17 percent.
On the Democratic side, Barack Obama has a narrow 30 percent to 28 percent lead over Hillary Clinton, but that represents a big reversal from last month when Clinton had a 14 point lead in a state said to be a firewall for her against a possible loss in Iowa. John Edwards was third at 14 percent.
On the issue of healthcare, the leading concern of Democrats, 80 percent of likely Democratic voters said it should be the government’s responsibility to ensure universal coverage, compared with just 30 percent of Republicans. On immigration, likely Republican voters in New Hampshire were most concerned about illegal immigrants taking government benefits, and indicated overwhelmingly that stopping the flow of undocumented immigrants into the country should be the top priority. Among Democrats, 42 percent indicated illegal immigration has not been a negative influence on the country. But a plurality of Democrats, 47 percent, indicated they believe that border security should be a higher priority than dealing with those already living the country illegally.