Presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee has risen to second place among Florida Republicans and now trails Rudy Giuliani by a narrow margin, a new poll reveals.
In the survey of nearly 500 likely GOP voters by Strategic Vision LLC, Giuliani led with 25 percent of the vote, with Huckabee behind at 21 percent. John McCain was third with 15 percent, followed by Mitt Romney with 13 percent and Fred Thompson with 10 percent.
No other candidate got more than 4 percent of the vote, and 9 percent were undecided.
“The Republican race continues to remain highly volatile,” said David E. Johnson, CEO of Strategic Vision.
“While Giuliani retains a narrow lead within the margin of error, his support has decreased dramatically since our November poll, while Huckabee has surged to second place. The question concerning Huckabee is how deep is his support, and should he flounder in the early states, will his supporters remain loyal.
“At this point in time, it appears that social conservatives are coalescing around Huckabee as they had earlier around Fred Thompson.
“In a race as unpredictable as the current race, McCain, Romney, and even Thompson are still very much in the thick of the race and could benefit from either a Giuliani or Huckabee collapse.”
Among Democratic candidates, Hillary Clinton led in the Florida poll with 48 percent of the vote, comfortably ahead of Barack Obama’s 31 percent. John Edwards got only 6 percent of the vote. No other candidate received more than 3 percent, and 8 percent were undecided.
“Clinton for the most part stayed stable in her showing since our November poll, while Obama increased his showing by 4 percent,” said Johnson.
In another interesting finding, the poll disclosed that only 15 percent of Florida voters approved of the way the Democratic-controlled Congress is handling its job.
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