McCain Gains on Bush in Latest CA Poll

By Jerry Miller | July 7, 2008 | 8:25 PM EDT

( - Republican presidential hopeful John McCain has sharply cut into Texas Governor George W Bush's lead among California Republicans according to the latest Field Poll.

The survey, taken February 2nd thru the 6th and immediately after McCain's decisive win in New Hampshire, has Bush leading by 19 points, 46 percent to 27 percent. Candidates Alan Keyes had four percent and publisher Steve Forbes came in with one percent.

A week ago, Bush was leading McCain by 40 points.

The survey also found McCain in a statistical dead heat when matched against Vice President Al Gore and well ahead of former New Jersey Senator Bill Bradley, in general election match-ups.

The survey also found Gore leading Bush 49 percent to 42 percent. A month ago, the race was a statistical dead heat. As for a Bush-Bradley presidential contest, they remain in a statistical dead heat.

The McCain campaign said the change in California is due largely to voter's awareness of the New Hampshire results. "Since then, a lot of them (voters) have gotten their first look at John McCain and so far they like what they see," said campaign spokesman Todd Harris.

Meanwhile, a Bush spokesman characterized the Field Poll as something that was bound to occur. "We were ahead 40 points and we knew that wasn't realistic," Margita Thompson said.