Iowa poll out this morning shows dead heat; Romney downplays, says focus may be on Florida

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A Bloomberg News poll “of likely caucus participants shows Cain at 20 percent, Paul at 19 percent, Romney at 18 percent and Gingrich at 17 percent in a contest that remains wide open. The poll reflects the race’s fluidity, with 60 percent of likely caucus-goers saying they still could be persuaded to pick someone other than their top choice. A tenth remain undecided. Economic issues such as jobs, taxes and government spending are driving voter sentiment, rather than such social issues as abortion and gay marriage, the poll finds. Only about a quarter of likely caucus-goers say social or constitutional issues are more important to them, compared with 71 percent who say fiscal concerns. In the Bloomberg poll, 29 percent of likely caucus participants say they believe Cain’s denials, while 37 percent are waiting for more information. More than a quarter are skeptical of his answers or do not believe him. Cain does better among men than women in the poll, 23 percent to 15 percent.”

Meanwhile, Romney “veered into some talk about the political chessboard” at a Florida fundraiser, the

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