Monday, February 18, 2008

Obama Even In Texas

A new Opinion Research poll says that Texas is now a statistical tie. This is the first offering to show Obama even with Clinton, olders polls showed her with anywhere from a 7-16 point advantage. If the numbers shakeout as suggested, an Obama victory, or a "too close to call" finish, this race is essentially over:
A new CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll suggests the battle for the Democratic presidential nomination between Sens. Hillary Clinton of New York and Barack Obama of Illinois is a statistical dead heat in Texas, which holds primaries March 4.

In the survey, out Monday, 50 percent of likely Democratic primary voters support Clinton as their choice for the party's nominee, with 48 percent backing Obama.

Likely Democratic primary voters view Clinton and Obama on roughly equal terms. Seventy-nine percent say they would be satisfied if Clinton were the nominee; an equal number feel the same way about Obama. Seventy-nine percent say it's likely Clinton can win the nomination; 82 percent say the same about Obama.

To be fair, there was also a American Research Poll released that has Obama with a six point advantage in Texas. I usually omit these polls, because from what I've read ARG is a very suspect, very suspicious outfit, so much so, places like RealClearPolitics no longer report their results. ARG also has Clinton up six points in Wisconsin, a result that shows no relationship to any other polling.

I've always assumed that Clinton would win Texas, it seemed a more natural fit than Ohio, a steeper hill for Obama. A lot will depend on what happens tomorrow in Wisconsin. Should Clinton surprise with a very close finish, or possibly a win, that could be enough to tip Texas. However, a solid Obama win and you would have to assume a deadheat leans to Obama, or at the very least assures a virtual tie. That scenario is basically the endgame for Obama, Clinton has to sweep the March 4th states, anything less just isn't enough.

17 comments:

Cliff said...

The thing is that Clinton's Giuliani style campaign of concentrating on 'winning' big states doesn't even make as much sense as Giuliani's did.

As Ross Douthat points out the Democrat primaries are run by the proportional representation system unlike the Republicans winner take all system. If Clinton wins Texas by a 60-40 margin for instance, she still only get 60% of the states delegates. At this point she has to not just win Texas and Ohio - she has to win them huge.

Steve V said...

cliff

I don't think Clinton necessarily needs to win them huge, because what she needs out of these states is the impression that she still has a reasonable shot. If Clinton could cut into the delegate lead, then she has blunted the Obama momentum, everyone take another deep breath, I suspect more "vetting" of Obama and they move forward. If she loses either Texas or Ohio, then its over really, people will start to file in behind Obama.

Cliff said...

The thing is, on policy she's actually better than Obama. Paul Krugman has been taking a lot of shit for pointing out that Obama has a bad habit of buying into Republican framing on issues like Social Security and Clinton's health plan is unambiguously better and will bring Americans to universality faster.

But she rubs people the wrong way and Obama seems to beat her perspiration with inspiration.

Still the Democrats had a much more desirable problem than the GOP did this Primary season: Too many inspiring and desirable candidates to choose from rather than a sad collection of hacks and waterheads to pick the least out of.

Cliff said...

Also worth noting is the arc of momentum in Texas. It doesn't look good for Clinton.

Steve V said...

"Too many inspiring and desirable candidates to choose from rather than a sad collection of hacks and waterheads to pick the least out of."

Cliff, that's quite true. That poll I cited, also showed that 80% of both candidates supporters liked, and would be quite happy, if the other were the nominee.

Anonymous said...

wait a minute,,, u r quoting cnn polls????????are u crazy????
Cocaine sniffing, cant come up with my own speach obama cant win...he is fake...

Anonymous said...

the citizens of texas desperately need to research both candidates before voting. you have to think also about all the political posts the new prez will fill in white
house. hillary stable and reliable. obama. when does he ever explain what he will do. worried about who might ride into washington in his back pocket.

Antonio said...

I havent seen this much obama hyping since new hampshire from the US mainstream media...

are they setting him up for fall number 2 or is it for real this time...

jaybs said...

First we heard from Clinton that it would all be over by February 5 now we are being told it will be June 7.

Texas was always The Jewel in The Crown the one State that Hilary was safe in and has spent so much time. No wild claims from the Obama camp, just more of the same hard work.

The new strap line from Hilary she is the "ESTABLISHMENT" the one thing most of the Voters do not want, all the cheap attacks on Obama have not stuck so far, in fact they are reboudning on her and the second choice campaign team behind her.

sanclemente_2000 said...

The president of the united states should not has this kind of experiences:
http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-na-obamavotes24jan24,1,4287705.story
I hope he doesn't goof on the red button of the " Nuclear codes" once he became president .

Steve V said...

Survey USA poll out this morning that has Clinton up 5 points in Texas.

Anonymous said...

I'm from Europe and I'm following these elections very closely, but can someone tell me - isn't the party called Democratic party - what's democratic about the superdelegate system? USA has a two-party system and the Democrats also have the superdelegates - that ain't no democracy.

Steve V said...

anon

You can take that a step further, and look at how the caucuses are handled, in various states. The horse trading is obscene, the fact that certain candidates get no delegates, due to thresholds, the idea of party "captains" manipulating the process for their preferred candidate. All of it is an affront to true democracy.

Anonymous said...

The line "if it's sounds too good to be true, chances are it is".

I think the Obama hype is dangerous. I think the Americans are so down they are looking for magic. Because Obama's an inspirational speaker - they think he's going to wave a magic wand and their troubles will be over -this is very scary.

Steve V said...

I think the trick is too seperate the hype from the person. The media attachs all this nonsense to Obama, but that shouldn't distract from one simple fact- the guy is impressive.

Cliff said...

Clifford Orwin's piece in the Globe and Mail today -firewalled of course - crystalizd my growing sense of things. I think he's right and Hillary is in fact a dead candidate walking. The Democrats are about to run a black man for president and unless they somehow screw it up - always possible when you are talking about the Democrats - the American people are about to elect a black man president.

Steve V said...

Wisconsin exit polls suggest a Obama blowout, some saying 60-40. We'll see, but that would be devastating for Clinton.