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Iowa caucusing in January, Iowa Straw Poll on Saturday

 Iowa is getting most of the political attention, with a Republican poll on Saturday and caucus-timing decisions.

Iowa caucusing in January, Iowa Straw Poll on Saturday The Governor of Iowa Chet Culver said this morning that Iowa will hold the first presidential caucus in the country, but it will not be moved to 2007. Update: Iowa's caucuses are now scheduled for January 14th, according to the Washington Post.

Click here for the results of the Iowa Straw Poll

 Iowa had to make a decision on whether they will be the first state in the country to hold the caucus, after South Carolina announced the state would move its primary to Jan. 19, three days ahead of the scheduled date for New Hampshire's primary. By law, Iowa must be held eight days before any other caucus or primary, and both Republican and Democratic leaders have said they will schedule those caucuses eight days before the New Hampshire primary. New Hampshire is also expected to move the primary to earlier January, although no official word has been received about the NH plan.

 On Saturday the Republicans are scheduled for an informal straw poll in Ames, Iowa. High stakes for the second-tier GOP presidential candidates, and Tommy Thompson confirmed that if he does not come out first or second - he will drop out of the race. The most likely winner of the poll is Mitt Romney, many experts claim, as the other two major rivals, Rudy Giuliani and John McCain, will not participate. "It's a waste of money," according to Giuliani. It is still unclear if Fred Thomson will participate in the Iowa Straw Poll.

 The price of the dinner ticket for the Iowa Straw Poll is set at $35, and although the poll is non-binding, in 1999 George W. Bush won the Iowa Straw Poll, then the Iowa caucus and the Republican Primaries. For the elections of 1996, in 1995 Bob Dole was a tie-winner at the straw poll, also won the Iowa caucus and the GOP primaries. Now that Giuliani and McCain will not participate, the results would be beneficial only to compare the support for Mitt Romney to the rest of the candidates.

The Iowa poll will likely move the odds on the GOP candidates a bit. Here are the latest odds on who will be the winner of the Republican primaries, as posted by Bodog Sports:

Rudy Giuliani - 11/10

John McCain - 5/1

Fred Thompson - 2/1

Newt Gingrich - 7/1

Mitt Romney - 7/2

Mike Huckabee - 15/1

Tommy Thompson - 20/1

Sam Brownback - 20/1

Chuck Hagel - 25/1

Duncan Hunter - 35/1

Tom Tancredo - 50/1

Jim Gilmore - 60/1

Ron Paul - 25/1

Published on 08/10/2007

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