Two Views Of McCain's Viability: Part One

Is Rudy Giuliani feeling the hot breath of Sen. John McCain on his neck? Maybe not.

Giuliani's supporters are circulating a memo contending that the resurgence McCain has seen in the national polls is illusory -- a result of Fred Thompson's having faded since his announcement and Mitt Romney's having spent $52M and stayed at roughly 11%. Meanwhile, the memo argues, Giuliani continues to tick up, everywhere.

The memo was obtained from a Republican supporter of Giuliani's.

It notes that McCain has not enjoyed a lead since the beginning of the year, that his standing in New Hampshire hasn't really improved and that he's barely afloat in Iowa. Also: "Senator McCain has not received 20% of the ballot share in a single public South Carolina survey since July."

Despite a recent television and direct mail campaign, polling data suggests Senator McCain has little chance of winning or even placing in the top 2 in an early primary or caucus state. He has not led in any state polling outside of Arizona since June

And on Feb. 5?

21 states will hold their GOP primary on February 5. The estimated total delegates available on February 5th are 1,274. The most recent polling indicates that Senator McCain has only a narrow advantage in one state, his home state of Arizona