Polls in Iowa indicate the presidential frontrunners in both parties
are beginning to surge, just as the January 24 caucuses near.
A local Des Moines television poll of likely Republican caucus-goers
indicates that 47 percent support Texas Governor George W. Bush,
the national frontrunner. Publisher Steve Forbes -- known for having
an extensive network of organizers in the state -- registers 24
percent. His campaign hopes for a strong start in Iowa to fuel his
candidacy through the front-loaded campaign schedule. The other
Republican candidates, including Arizona Senator John McCain, are
in the single digits.
McCain, who did not participate in August's Iowa Straw Poll, has
focused his early campaign on the Feb. 1 New Hampshire primary.
Meanwhile, he and Forbes have begun attacking Bush's tax plan in
hopes of making up some ground in the final days.
On the Democratic side, poll numbers show that Vice President Al
Gore has maintained a commanding lead over New Jersey Senator Bill
Bradley in Iowa, 53 to 32 percent respectively.
Poll watchers are trying to determine whether Bradley's repeated
bouts of an irregular heartbeat -- reported in the press Friday
-- will affect his candidacy at a crucial time in the campaign.
Bradley announced to reporters that he has suffered from the condition
four separate times in the last month, but says it is not debilitating.
President George Bush suffered from an irregular heartbeat as well
during his term in office.
Bradley remained optimistic about his chances in Iowa -- instead
pointing to the polling unreliability in Iowa. "We're getting
good responses from people,'' he said ``The real question is will
people actually show up.''