Team Huckabee wants to make sure we focus on the latest Rasmussen poll from Iowa showing Romney at 25%, Thompson at 19%, Huckabee at 18% and Rudy at 13%. This shows a smaller lead for Romney than others including the recent Des Moines Register poll showing him with a 9 pt lead. So is this a bit out of the norm or is something changing there? Well, Romney is spending couple of days there this week which tells you things may be getting tighter than he would have liked. The benefit of the large investment of time and money for Romney was that it built a big lead in Iowa; the downside is that when the numbers float down and others gear up it looks like he is losing steam. Suffice it to say it would be very bad, maybe campaign ending news if Romney somehow were to lose Iowa( I think this is very unlikely given a caucus is about organization and Romney outstrips everyone) but if Huckabee beats out Thompson does that shift the race almost as much? And of course, Rudy would be a lot happier to get a third rather than a fourth. But with everyone in a tizzy about primary and caucus dates it’s hard to gauge just how important Iowa will be.
UPDATE: Jonathan Martin has this informative account of Romney in Iowa. He of course wants to defend Iowa’s first place status ( his comment that Iowa is special because you have to meet people not just buy ads is a bit nervy since he’s spent at least $2M in ads there) given that it is still his best state. What is interesting is that he promises to be spending time in Iowa, NH, SC, and Michigan. But where is Florida?