Your humble correspondent totally botched the earlier post about this, having relied on data from April instead of the new results, which weren’t out yet.

They’re out now. No wonder Fred’s thinking of taking it to Mitt in Iowa:

Republicans antsy for a conservative standard-bearer in the presidential race have begun to rally behind Fred Thompson, propelling the former Tennessee senator to within hailing distance of the lead for the party’s nomination, a new Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg Poll has found.

Former New York Mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani holds first place in the survey, with support from 27% of the Republicans and independents who said they planned to vote in the party’s 2008 primaries.

But Thompson, an actor who plays a prosecutor on NBC’s “Law and Order,” polled 21%. Indications are he will join the race within the next month.

The two other major GOP contenders, Sen. John McCain of Arizona and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, have fallen well short of the leaders and are in a battle for third place. McCain was backed by 12% of those polled, Romney by 10%. The rest of the crowded field is mired in single digits.

Meanwhile, the great social-con bonfire of Rudy’s candidacy continues, with Tony Perkins, Louis Sheldon, Gary Bauer, and Richard Land all joining James Dobson in feeling somehow compelled to publicly and noisily profess their opposition to him despite their insistence that they’re only acting as private citizens. They care deeply about the war, of course — just not so much that they’ll hold their noses and vote for Rudy if he’s the pick. Unless…

“Where Mayor Giuliani is today, I absolutely could not support him. However, I would not completely rule it out,” said Pat Mahoney, executive director of the Christian Defense Coalition. “There’s two words that change the whole dynamic, and those two words are Hillary Clinton.”

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