Fortnight Review: Mitt takes Iowa Lead

Tonight’s trend estimate shows Mitt Romney in first place in Iowa with Ron Paul slipping to second place. Rick Santorum has held third place while Newt Gingrich as slipped to 4th place. Some polls have Gingrich in 5th while others make it 4th. My standard trend estimate shows a more solid 4th place than earlier in the week, when Gingrich and Perry were nearly tied.

This also debuts a new feature, the Fortnight Review chart, which plots the last 14 days of polling along with standard and more sensitive trend estimates. By zooming in on the last two weeks we get a more clear picture of the most recent polls. The trends are still the trends based on all the data. As we obsess about each primary, these Fortnight Reviews let us obsess even more.

The longer term view is still important for perspective. The shifts in Iowa over the past 6 months have been huge, but the last two weeks are showing just marginal (though intriguing!) changes. So here is the long term Iowa trend for some perspective.