If George W. Bush's performance at his press conference Tuesday has you counting the days to 2008, Fox News has news you can use, at least a little. The network is up with a poll on Democratic and Republican preferences for the 2008 presidential primaries and the head-to-head matchups that could result.
On the Republican side, Rudy Giuliani leads all contenders with support from 29 percent of the Republicans polled. Next is John McCain with 22 percent -- down four ticks from when Fox last polled in June -- and then there's everyone else: Newt Gingrich (8 percent), Bill Frist (5 percent), Mitt Romney (4 percent), George Allen (3 percent) and Chuck Hagel (1 percent). In an indication of just how early it is, guys named "Other," "Unsure" and "Wouldn't Vote" get 26 percent -- about the same as each of the two front-runners.
For the Democrats, it's Hillary Clinton at 43 percent and then a pack behind her. Al Gore, who says he has no plans to run, is at 12 percent. John Edwards, who seems to be running full time even now, has 11 percent. John Kerry is at 10 percent, Joe Biden and Wes Clark at 4 percent each, Mark Warner at 3 percent and Evan Bayh at 2 percent. Democrats without an opinion seem hard to find: Only 11 percent say they're unsure or wouldn't vote, and a negligible number suggested candidates who weren't on the list already.
Head-to-head matchups? Fox doesn't check on every permutation, but it says that McCain beats Clinton, Gore or Kerry and that Giuliani beats Clinton. One bright spot for Democrats: Asked to imagine a race with Dick Cheney at the top of the ticket, Americans said they'd cast their lot with Hillary Clinton or John Kerry instead.