McCain’s Giuliani Bounce

John McCain has been the primary beneficiary of Rudy Giuliani’s exit from the race, the latest Gallup national tracking poll shows.

John McCain continues to be the primary beneficiary of Rudy Giuliani’s recent exit from the Republican race for president. The percentage of Republican primary voters nationwide favoring McCain for the nomination rose from 39% in interviews conducted Jan. 29-30, to 44% in Jan. 30-Feb. 1 polling. Neither Mitt Romney nor Mike Huckabee picked up any additional support.

As a result, McCain now holds a 20-percentage point lead over Romney in the Jan. 30-Feb. 1 Gallup Poll Daily tracking results. It is McCain’s largest lead since he assumed the front-runner position following the New Hampshire Republican primary.


It stands to reason that Giuliani’s departure and subsequent endorsement would boost McCain. They were, after all, competing for the same constituency: non-evangelical national security voters. There really isn’t enough polling out there to show this definitively, though, and Gallup isn’t making their crosstabs available; a five point bounce could be attributable to his own win in Florida, a reaction to the debates, or a mere fluke.

The RealClearPolitics national averages (about the only concise way to gauge Super Tuesday’s 22-state, all-over-the-map primaries) show only three post-Florida, post-Guiliani polls. Two show an overwhelming advantage for McCain while the other shows a tie:

Republican National Polls 20080202

Let’s look at the tracking (which includes two pre-Florida surveys):

Republican National Polls Trends 20080202

McCain and Romney are both surging, as one would expect in a race that has narrowed into a two-man contest. McCain’s trend is steeper, though, and the gap is widening.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. DL says:

    Without huckabee siphoning off the social conservatives -romney would be a shoe-in