I have little doubt that Fred Thompson has, or is well on his way to establishing himself as a major contender for the Republican presidential nomination. The Big Three has, for all extents and purposes, become the Big Four.
But let’s note that in the much-discussed recent Rasmussen poll, Fred Thompson gained six points in a week; it was Giuliani 23, Thompson 17 last week and now it’s 23 all. I wouldn’t be surprised if the next one had Thompson slipping back down by a few points; if that comes to pass, it shouldn’t be interpreted as Fredmania jumping the shark or some other hair-trigger overcaffeinated interpretation. It looks like Fred is building, slowly but streadily, and this week’s tied result is probably a bit of statistical noise.
Rasmussen shows both McCain and Romney losing ground.
Rasmussen’s other weird result of the week? In a hypothetical three way matchup between Barack Obama, Fred Thompson, and New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg among New Jersey respondents, Obama and Bloomberg tie at 32 while Fred gets 20 percent.
If you go with the all-New York lineup, of Rudy, Hillary, and Bloomberg, Hillary wins 38 percent to 29 percent for Rudy and 21 percent for Bloomberg.