Politics

Who’s on top in the race for the GOP nomination?

Even in a summer dominated by Donald Trump, former Florida governor Jeb Bush reigns as the most likely winner of the New Hampshire primary — for now.

The Boston Globe has revised its rankings of the top 10 Republican presidential candidates in New Hampshire, noting where they would place in the first-in-the-nation primary if it were held today. The order is based on the three things that demonstrate a strong presidential campaign: polling, fund-raising, and organization.

Nearly all of the 17 GOP presidential candidates have made a pilgrimage to New Hampshire this summer to campaign for a primary that’s more than six months away. At least seven are relying on the Granite State to propel them to victory contests next year.

Most of the field will return again Monday for an evening forum in Manchester before reuniting later in the week for the first official GOP debate in Cleveland. (For coverage of both, visit www.BostonGlobe.com.)

Note: The candidates’ previous rankings from our April list are noted below their current slots.

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

1. Jeb Bush

  • Was 1

  • Former Florida governor

  • Bush has said the GOP nominee should be willing to “lose the primary to win the general.” So he’s not backing off some of his more moderate positions that remain unpopular with the GOP’s base. It’s working for now: Bush held a tenuous front-runner position in most Granite State polling this summer, and if he gets in trouble, he’s raised more campaign cash than anyone else in the field to help him.


Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

2. Donald Trump

  • Was 5

  • New York businessman

  • He leads the GOP field in a number of recent national polls and a couple recent New Hampshire surveys, but he still lags behind Bush in New Hampshire in terms of the necessary political organization to get voters to the polls.

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

3. Scott Walker

  • Was 2

  • Governor OF Wisconsin

  • He continues to focus on Iowa, where he leads in polls. But Walker remains the default choice for conservatives in New Hampshire, as evidenced by the large crowds who come to see him.

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

4. Rand Paul

  • Was 3

  • Senator from Kentucky

  • His father placed second in the 2012 New Hampshire GOP primary, and last year he led Granite State polls. Today, Paul’s chances aren’t as strong, and he hopes a large GOP field will make his niche of voters a relatively bigger piece of the pie

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

5. Carly Fiorina

  • Was 9

  • Former Hewlett-Packard CEO

  • When state primary voters list their top three choices for president, they name Fiorina as one of them almost every time. She is getting attention by working the state frequently and hard.

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

6. Marco Rubio

  • Was 7

  • Senator from Florida

  • Rubio appears primed for a New Hampshire upset moment if Bush or Walker falters, but that has not happened yet.

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

7. Chris Christie

  • Was 4

  • Governor of New Jersey

  • No one is spending more time in New Hampshire this summer than Christie. But Trump is really stealing his shtick as the “Tell It Like It Is” candidate.

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

8. John Kasich

  • Was a long shot

  • Governor of Ohio

  • His super PAC dumped serious cash on television ads that helped him place fourth in the most recent New Hampshire poll. But Kasich, who recently announced his campaign, has a lot of catching up to do in the money chase and building a campaign.

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

9. Ted Cruz

  • Was 4

  • Senator from Texas

  • Cruz surprised with his fund-raising, bringing in the second-largest haul in the GOP field. But he has failed to build on his early momentum from campaign launch.

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

10. Dr. Ben Carson

  • Was not on the last list

  • Carson has many more fans in New Hampshire than Christie, Rubio, or Cruz, but he also has almost zero infrastructure to organize this support in the state.

THE LONG SHOTS

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

George Pataki

  • Former Governor of New York

  • What he lacks in campaign cash, Pataki makes up in hustle and personal approach. Unfortunately, his momentum as the New Hampshire candidate seems to be sputtering.

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

Rick Perry

  • Was 10

  • Former Governor of Texas

  • Like Pataki, he has a big resume leading a big state, but Perry has struggled to convince activists and donors that his moment didn’t pass in 2012.

Lindsey Graham

  • Senator from South Carolina

  • He has the endorsement of his friend, Senator John McCain, the two-time New Hampshire primary winner. But Graham has inherited nothing of McCain’s organization.

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

Bobby Jindal

  • Governor of Louisiana

  • Jindal has gone through the paces in New Hampshire, visiting the state in prior years. Despite this, his campaign doesn’t have much to show for it in the state.

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

Mike Huckabee

  • Former Governor of Arkansas

  • The social conservative has paid so little attention to the Granite state it is as though he is not even trying to win the state’s primary.

Rick Santorum

  • Former Senator from Pennsylvania

  • His New Hampshire campaign is nonexistent as he devotes most of his time and resources to the Iowa caucuses he won in 2012. More proof: His former national campaign manager, who lives in New Hampshire, works for Rand Paul.

Darren Thompson for the Boston Globe

Jim Gilmore

  • Former governor of Virginia

  • He is the Admiral James Stockdale of the race. Stockdale famously said in the 1992 vice-presidential debate: “Who am I? Why am I here?”

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