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2012: Romney continues to lead in NH, Bachmann in 2nd

The latest McClatchy-Marist poll: “Only 36 percent of registered voters say they'd definitely vote for President Barack Obama next year — but he still tops all Republican challengers in one-on-one matchups.” Obama leads Romney 46%-42% and Bachmann 49%-37%.

The Boston Globe looks at the risks of interest-group pledges: “Not signing carries a risk, as Romney discovered when his refusal to sign the Susan B. Anthony List pledge revived doubts about his antiabortion commitment. At the same time, candidates from George H.W. Bush to Barack Obama have gotten into trouble by making promises they could not keep.”

BACHMANN: What about federalism/states’ rights? In New Hampshire, “Bachmann suggested yesterday that she would support imposing a moratorium on the federal income tax as a way to boost the economy,” the Boston Globe writes. A man proposed putting “a moratorium on the entire income tax for one year for every citizen in this country and watch this country take off.’’ To which Bachmann replied, “That’s awesome. You will be happy to know that a colleague of mine from Texas, [Representative] Louie Rohmer, gave that suggestion.’’

But the Globe finds, “Gohmert’s proposal was not exactly what” the man suggested. His bill would have given TARP money to workers “by putting a two-month moratorium on payroll taxes and excluding income earned during those months from the income tax.” And talk about deficit reduction, a Heritage Foundation tax policy analyst said, as paraphrased by the Globe, “without the tax, the deficit would rise from $1.7 trillion to $2.7 trillion this year.”

As reported by NBC’s Chris Donovan, Tom Petty wants Bachmann to stop using his song “American Girl.”

Ron Carey, Bachmann’s former chief of staff wrote an op-ed in the Des Moines Register blasting his former boss, saying her office was “wildly out of control” and endorsing Tim Pawlenty, whom he knew while Carey was chairman of the Minnesota Republican Party.

CAIN: He becomes the latest presidential candidate to come out with an autobiography. “Who is Herman Cain?” will be released Oct. 4, The Atlantic reports.

HUNTSMAN: Byron York asks, “Why are so many conservatives wary of Jon Huntsman? … One answer is the company he keeps. Despite his solidly conservative views on many issues, Huntsman has gathered a group of advisers and supporters from the moderate-to-liberal side of the GOP spectrum and has received largely favorable treatment in the political press. Many conservatives look at that and say: There must be something wrong.”

The Grand Rapids Press notes that Huntsman didn’t make any public appearances yesterday while raising money in Michigan.

The Salt Lake Tribune looks at Huntsman’s claim that he was a job creator in Utah: “During his tenure as governor, the state saw a dramatic boom-and-bust cycle mirroring that of the nation. Between the time Huntsman took office in January 2005 and the economic peak in January 2007, there were about 127,000 jobs created in the state and unemployment dipped as low as 2.3 percent — the lowest in state history. But as the economy collapsed, roughly half those jobs disappeared and the unemployment rate tripled by the time Huntsman left office to take the job as U.S. ambassador to China in August 2009.”

PALIN: Sarah Palin’s visit to Pella, IA to view the premiere of a movie about her is “either a timely political move to fuel speculation about a potential 2012 presidential run or simply an effort to take advantage of her star power. Or maybe it's both,” Reuters writes, noting also that Bristol Palin created some hype yesterday when she told Fox News that her mother had made up her mind about whether to run for president, although she wouldn’t say what that decision was.

PAWLENTY: “Seeking to position himself as the hawk of the 2012 presidential field, former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty hammered at President Obama and Republican rivals Tuesday in his first presidential campaign speech on foreign policy,” the Minnesota Star-Tribune reports, adding, “Trailing in the single digits in polls and trying to turn the corner after a subpar debate performance in New Hampshire, Pawlenty is seeking to distance himself from front-runner Mitt Romney and rival Jon Huntsman, both of whom favor a quick drawdown of troops in Afghanistan.”

ROMNEY: He leads in New Hampshire in the latest Suffolk poll with 36%, followed by Michele Bachmann with 11%. Huntsman and Palin get 4%, Pawlenty and Gingrich 2%, Santorum 1%.

Romney and Jon Huntsman will both be in New Hampshire for July 4th, Politico reports, the first time the two have held overlapping events in the state. They were both slated to appear in Utah last weekend but Huntsman changed his schedule citing logistical issues.