In a new USAToday/Gallup poll of 909 Democrats, Republicans and independents conducted last week Clinton shows up at 39% with Obama at 26%.
In the GOP race, Giuliani leads at 28% to McCain's 18%.
The poll has a couple of glaring weakness: It doesn't appear that the poll includes most likely voters. It also includes non-candidates which makes the results less reliable still. For example, when Gore is thrown into the mix, Clinton's lead drops significantly. Thompson, still undeclared, was included in the GOP results coming in second place and likely tainted the numbers for the big GOP 3 since he mostly takes votes from Giuliani and to a lesser degree, Romney.
On the Dem side: Obama has peaked and will begin to struggle as the end of summer approaches. I wouldn't even be surprised if Edwards passes him by the end of the year. Obama may end up a VP running mate with Hillary or ...
Hillary is as strong as ever and continues to build her machine complete with regional and ethnic accents.
Bill Clinton suggests Al Gore may enter the race if Obama slips far enough. He certainly has the money and the contacts, but wouldn't he be a bit too late to the party? Al would certainly take votes away from Hillary, but would mostly destroy what's left of Obama. Al says "no," but seems to be behaving "yes."
As for Republicans considered as candidates... Unfortunately for Fred, as popular as he is on conservative talk radio, he will struggle to get the necessary funding at this stage, won't be an aggressive campaigner, and is too late to the race. His popularity in the polls shows more of a lack of voter's full commitment to current candidates than support for Thompson as evidenced by a CBS poll that showed 57% of Republicans want better candidates. The fact that he gets most votes from Giuliani's supporters indicates he is less conservative on social issues than some have suggested which hurts Giuliani and helps Romney a bit. Does that mean he's out? No, he will stay connected, play in the debates, and may end up as a VP running mate.
Newt Gingrich is waiting until November 6 to make his announcement. Don't look for him to become a serious contender even if he takes the plunge. Newt carries too much baggage among the very conservatives who support him, not to mention everyone else. He may be interested in a VP opportunity, however.
Jeb Bush? Naaah... wrong time.
McCain's campaign is in trouble and McCain will be struggling to maintain parity in the polls by September. I would expect Guiiani to benefit by McCain's loss in popularity as well as Romney to some degree.