Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton were in a statistical dead heat in Indiana according to TeleResearch Corporation last week that has since turned into a double digit deficit. And for the first time, a pollster has Clinton ahead in North Carolina (InsiderAdvantage). Barack Obama is really sinking in the polls and if he were to lose both Indiana and North Carolina, this will get even uglier.
By the way, the InsiderAdvantage poll that has Clinton ahead is a bit flawed in our opinion. The sample size of African Americans was too small and it only showed Obama receiving 60-something percent in that demographic. If you were to oversample African Americans a bit and convert his support into the 80% range, Obama would be ahead. Just some fodder for thought.
According to the Democratic national poll by CBS News NY Times Poll:
Recent public appearances by Sen. Barack Obama’s former pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, and Obama’s denunciation of his statements could impact the Democratic contest. In interviews conducted just before and during the revived controversy, Obama maintains a strong position among Democratic Party voters but there are suggestions of problems. Democrats are still paying attention to the campaign, and say it doesn’t need to end even if its length has a negative impact on the eventual nominee.
Obama now leads Sen. Hillary Clinton by eight points among Democratic primary voters nationwide (those who have already participated in a Democratic primary held this year, or still plan to). But more people are now undecided about who should get the nomination than four weeks ago.
According to the Democratic North Carolina poll by Mason Dixon Polling for WRAL:
“Right or wrong, it’s the Wright phenomenon for Obama,” said David McLennan, a political science professor at Peace College.
McLennan said Obama’s former pastor, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, is dragging down the Illinois senator. Wright has made comments such as suggesting that the AIDS virus was invented by the government to destroy “people of color.”
“It is a media-driven story. Wright is very controversial. He makes controversial statements. He gets people fired up, but it’s not one of the top issues in the polls,” McLennan said.
When asked what issues matter most to North Carolinians, 51 percent said jobs and the economy; 14 percent said the Iraq war, and health care followed those.
As the candidates make their last-minute push toward Tuesday’s primary, the question will be which one can carve into the other’s core group of constituents.
Obama scores well with voters under age 35, while Clinton edges him out with voters over 50.
Where there is no competition is race. Eighty-seven percent of African Americans plan to vote for Obama, while 62 percent of whites said they will vote for Clinton. There has been very little evidence suggesting either candidate can cut into those numbers before Tuesday.
“I don’t think it’s about advertising. I don’t think it’s about personal appearances. I think it really, it’s who’s energized to come out on Election Day,” McLennan said.
According to the Democratic North Carolina poll by Insider Advantage:
Blacks: Obama 64%, Clinton 20%. Whites: Clinton 54%, Obama 34%. Women: Clinton 46%, Obama 39%.
According to the Democratic Indiana poll by Rasmussen Reports:
Eighty-two percent (82%) of Clinton voters say they are “certain” they will vote for her while 77% of Obama supporters say the same about their decision. Among supporters of each candidate, just 4% say there’s a good chance they will change their mind.
Clinton leads by nineteen percentage points among White voters. Obama leads 90% to 4% among African-Americans.
Obama leads among voters under 40 while Clinton has the edge among older voters. The former First Lady is especially strong among those over 65–she leads by a two-to-one margin among senior citizens.
The survey was conducted Tuesday night. That was after Obama’s denunciation of his former Pastor but before Hoosiers had a chance to see it in the morning newspapers.
Clinton is viewed favorably by 73% of Likely Indiana Primary Voters while Obama earns positive reviews from 70%. Those figures include 46% with a Very Favorable opinion of Clinton and 39% who think that highly of Obama.
Fifty percent (50%) of Clinton voters have a favorable opinion of Obama. Fifty-one percent (51%) of Obama voters have a favorable opinion of Clinton.
According to the Democratic Indiana poll by TeleResearch Corporation:
What is particularly striking in the results is the declining support for Obama in favor of Clinton over successive days in which respondents were questioned.
On the first day of the survey, Clinton held a 2 percent lead — 45 percent to 43 percent, despite a 20-point lead for Obama among male respondents. Each day, more respondents supported Clinton.
By the last day of polling, Clinton took 4 percent lead among men — 45 percent to 41 percent — representing a staggering 24-point swing.
Over the four days in which the survey was conducted, the controversy involving the Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Obama’s former pastor, swelled.
“In that window, he dominated all the political news in the presidential race,” said Jeff Lewis, TeleResearch CEO. “In that period of time, Obama’s lead among men went from a 20 point lead on Friday … to a four point lead for Sen. Clinton.”
Among females, Clinton held a commanding lead of between 15 and 20 points.