Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo.

Rep. Tom Tancredo, R-Colo., a leading critic in Congress of lax immigration policies, is a Republican favorite for president for the second year in a row in a non-scientific poll modeled after the NCCA basketball tournament.

The “March Madness” format matches 64 potential candidates one-on-one in a six-round tournament. In each of the first five rounds, Tancredo has by far the most votes.

The Colorado congressman squares off today with Rep. Mike Pence of Indiana in the final round.

Tancredo, chairman of the Congressional Immigration Reform Caucus, wants immediate and dramatic policy changes to restrict illegal traffic over the borders.

The poll is organized by a St. Louis Republican survey company that specializes in automated polling. Survey Saint Louis has been commissioned by Bush-Cheney ’04, the Republican National Committee and several statewide candidates in Missouri.

In the presidential poll, Tancredo defeated Texas Gov. Rick Perry, 80 percent to 20 percent in the first round. In the second, he took out Jack Kemp, 82.1 percent to 17.9 percent.

In the “Sweet 16,” it was Tancredo with 86.9 percent, Pat Buchanan with 13.1 percent

In the quarter finals, he defeated Newt Gingrich, 80.9 percent to 19.1 percent. Then, in the semi-finals, he beat former Virginia Gov. George Allen, 79.9 percent to 20.1 percent.

Front-running candidates Sen. John McCain and Sen. Bill Frist lost in the first round. California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, who is not eligible for the presidency because he was born abroad, also lost in the first round.

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani, Secretary of State Condoleezza Ric and Sen. Sam Brownback were eliminated in the third round by wide margins while Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney lost in the fourth.

Pence defeated former U.S. Rep. J.C. Watts to reach the final round.

Last year, Tancredo handily defeated conservative talk-show icon Rush Limbaugh and Sen. John McCain.

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