New Hampshire Mitt Romney and John McCain sparred Sunday over their tax and spending records and who was a better agent for change, in the second Republican debate of the final weekend before the New Hampshire primary.
Wide open and intense, the race for the Republican nomination has gotten ever tighter ahead of Tuesday's voting. A new USA Today/Gallup poll showed the lead for Republican race within the margin of error in New Hampshire.
McCain had the support of 34 percent of likely voters, up from 27 percent in mid-December. Romney was at 30 percent, down from 34 percent, and former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee - the Iowa caucus winner - was third at 13 percent. Former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani had 8 percent, while former Tennessee Sen. Fred Thompson was in the low single digits.
Rep. Ron Paul of Texas - who had 8 percent - was excluded from the debate by the sponsor, Fox News Channel, and the New Hampshire Republican Party dropped out of the forum to protest the exclusion.