Monday polls: Obama weakens in some polls, Coleman up in MN

http://www.blogger.com/img/gl.link.gifA day after a wave of general election polls highlighted McCain's improving position, the new USA Today/Gallup poll suggests that the Democrats are retaining a slight lead:

  • Clinton beats McCain 51% to 46%, while Obama is on top 49% to 47%.
  • This is an improvement for Democrats, as they both trailed McCain in Gallup's previous poll released at the end of February.
Noticeable in this poll is also that Clinton is running slightly ahead of Obama, which confirms that the two candidates electability showing is starting to be balanced and inconsistent again as it used to be after a few weeks in which Obama was running way ahead. And this could coincidence to a general weakening of Obama's position over the past few days, perhaps as a result of the negative attention he attracted with the controversy over Wright:

  • Gallup's tracking poll shows Clinton taking a statistically insignificant, 47% to 45%. What is not insignificant is that this is the first time in 9 days (since the days following Hillary's March 4th come back) that Obama is ahead.
  • Rasmussen has also showed a tightening Democratic primary over the past few days (basically since Wright), with Obama now up 46% to 44%. Worth noting that Clinton is up 48% to 42% among registered Democrats, so Obama is getting his lead from independents and Republicans willing to vote in the Dem primary.
  • In the general election, Rasmussen shows McCain pulling ahead and leading both Democrats 48% to 42% -- a lead that is starting to look significant. Confirming that Obama's issues are due to last week's stories is the drop in his favorability rating and the rise of his unfavorable rating.
Naturally, the Clinton-Obama national match-ups are more useless now than ever since there only are a handful of states that still have to vote. But they are an important indication of the mood of the country and of the impact stories are having. And the Obama campaign will take comfort in a CNN poll released today but taken from Friday to Sunday (so also after the Wright controversy) that shows Obama is leading Clinton 52% to 46%. This is the first time Obama is above 50% in a CNN national poll.

Finally, SUSA released a Senate poll today from Minnesota and brought some good news for the GOP:

  • The incumbent Norm Coleman is way ahead of the Democrat Al Franken, 51% to 41%.
  • This is a dramatic shift from SUSA's February poll that showed a toss-up between the two candidates. What is strange is that the male vote practically did not change between the two but that the female vote dramatically shifted from Franken to Coleman.
This is the first poll taken since Franken became the likely Democratic nominee with the withdrawal of his strongest opponent. And it is particularly frustrating for Democrats since it follows a string of polls that showed Franken edging out Coleman, confirming that this seat will be one of the most hotly contested (and entertaining) of the cycle. We will have to get confirmation that this poll is not an outlier, of course, and the numbers remain close enough (especially this far out of Election Day) for us to rate this as one of the Democrats' very best pick-up opportunities.

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  • Democrats have so much money they will bury McCain financially. That should put them back on top.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At 18 March, 2008 07:35  

  • First, it's a long way to November.

    Second, the Wright fiasco will be a pain for Obama for about two weeks to go, and then, should he get the nomination, the GOP will try to sling it out there again. This could hurt him more with white male democrats than with independents, but I still give him the better cards in beating the thing.

    Third, money is one thing, but do not underestimate the gentle sounding and moderate looking gentleman from Arizona - he will be a formidable opponent.

    It could really be a nailbiter again, and perhaps come down to two states or so in the GE.

    By Blogger Mark, At 18 March, 2008 09:01  

  • I completely agree that McCain should not be under-estimated. Both Democratic candidates have weaknesses against him. Clinton's "experience" pales besides his and sexism may be an issue. For Obama the main weakness could be older (and white) Democrats feeling more comfortable with McCain than Obama (they have in general been happier with Clinton than Obama in the primaries). Clinton also doesn`t put many other states in play so relies on OH giving her victory (maybe getting IA too). McCain is strong in several key Democratic states that are only just blue (in presidental elections) like MI, WA, OR, WI, PA, MN and the loss of just one of these would doom the Democrats even if they gain OH.

    By Anonymous Guy, At 18 March, 2008 12:00  

  • Obama gave a intelligent speech dealing withe race and Pastor Wright. This should put the whole issue into context by the end of the month thereby leaving plenty of time to campaign in PA and the following states.

    He has taken the criticism head on and answered in a thoughtful way. Politically brave and trying something new - it should be rewarded.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, At 18 March, 2008 15:28  

  • The Obama campaign will go forward with a speach on Iraq and the economy. Then something else will grab the media's attention other than the Wright story. The campaign goes on. I expect Obama will be the nominee, but if not, his life goes on. He would be an excellent president though.

    By Anonymous stone621, At 19 March, 2008 00:31  

  • To the Trinity Church of Christ in Chicago Illinois and to Reverend Wright in particular.

    From where I sit, I don't hear a positive message about Jesus teaching about love and forgiveness. Instead, I hear messages wrapped around the central theme of white Europeans and Romans oppressing and killing a black Jesus. The parable here is obvious.

    Your own bigotry blinds you to how your messages are coming across to the rest of America. In a country where over the last 50 years we have been trying to remove bigotry from our very own culture, message like those coming from this church and from Reverend Wright in particular only serve to perpetuate what we are trying to destroy. If anyone should, it should be the leadership within the black community who should be setting the standards and in the process raising the bar.

    The fact that it took Barack Obama a little over 20 years to denounce the words of Reverend Wright is telling. It should not take 20 years to decide if you should associate with leadership spewing racist vomit. I suppose in this case it's like they say: "Birds of a feather ...".

    Racism is not limited to just the white population and the black community is not immune. The "teachings" of Reverend Wright shows that a segment of the black population can also be guilty of racism. The hypocrisy is self evident.

    Reverend Wright and Mr. Obama are racists, that much is clear. It is not the type of thinking that leaders who preach hope and opportunity should have. This country deserves better for President of the United States.

    By Blogger The Admin, At 29 March, 2008 14:42  

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