It’s Zogby so the results are presumptively wrong, but compare them to the RCP numbers for New Hampshire and you’ll see they aren’t that wrong. Mitt’s the local boy up there and he’s riding a wave of good buzz right now from his fundraising numbers. He was only six points off the lead in the American Research Group poll conducted last month. Given Z’s usual margin of error, figure he trails McCain in reality by five points or so at the moment.

Emphasis on “at the moment.” Because he’s gone and said something that further damages his credibility as a supposedly committed, red meat conservative.

Ace thinks Rudy finished himself off yesterday with his abortion remarks, but this wish list from Gallup makes me wonder:

gallup.png

Leadership, competence, integrity. Rudy. And on the left: soulful isolationist populism. Silky Pony.

They’ve got something in common, in fact: Hillary’s picking up points against both of them.

Update: I gave Zogby too much credit. In New Hampshire, CNN has it Rudy 29, McCain 29, Mitt 17.

Update: South Carolinians say Rudy’s “toast” for pro-choice welfare position:

Conservatives and political experts in South Carolina said Giuliani’s moderate stance abortion will hamper his ability to win votes here.

“He’s toast,” said Clemson University political scientist Dave Woodard. “I think it’s going to be really hard for him to overcome this in South Carolina.”

While Republicans in South Carolina oppose abortion by degrees — allowing abortions in certain circumstances, such as a mother’s health, rape or incest — there’s little room on public financing, said Oran Smith, executive director of the Palmetto Family Council, an anti-abortion group.

“That’s usually one of the first things off the list when you talk about things related to abortion,” Smith said.

Update: Take it or leave it, says Rudy. To which the entire southern half of the country says, leave it.