Close Race for Dems in Iowa

By Melanie Arter | July 7, 2008 | 8:30 PM EDT

( - Massachusetts Sen. John Kerry is leading the Democratic presidential candidates going into the Iowa caucuses Monday, according to a recent poll.

The Reuters/MSNBC/Zogby poll shows Kerry with 25 percentage points, followed by Vermont Gov. Howard Dean with 22, North Carolina Sen. John Edwards with 21 and Missouri Rep. Richard Gephardt fourth with 18 points.

"The story here is that Kerry had a huge day (29%) on Sunday alone. He carries his lead into the caucuses. He will probably be on top in Monday's entrance poll. Edwards finished strong and Dean bounced back," said pollster John Zogby. "Only Gephardt seems to have faded on this last day.

"Kerry dominates in the western part of the state, among Independents, and among voters with at least a college degree. Dean holds a strong lead with younger voters. Edwards is well ahead in the central part of the state, but trails a bit in the west and east," added Zogby.

"Gephardt has slipped to a tie with older voters and high school educated. The lowest income voters are still with him," the pollster said. "The race is very close among union voters and liberals. All four candidates have the same amount of very strong supporters."

The poll was conducted from January 16-18 through phone calls to 501 likely caucus voters statewide in Iowa. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percent.

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