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article imageClinton Surges as Controversy Dogs Obama

By Susan Duclos     May 1, 2008 in Politics
Polls are only snapshots of right now, but the next Democratic primaries are days away on May 6, 2008 and recent polls are a good guide to opinions and how badly the latest infusion to the Obama/Wright controversy is harming the Obama campaign.
Democratic primaries in both Indiana and North Carolina are just around the corner, set for May 6, 2008, with 218 delegates at stake, so polls being done this week, although not infallible, are a good guide to public opinion and are showing a slight surge for Hillary Clinton and a major tumble for Barack Obama in the midst of the turmoil that Jeremiah Wright, Obama's pastor of almost 20 years and his controversial statements, has been causing Obama. shows a flurry of polls all showing the suggestion of a Clinton surge and that the controversies dogging Barack Obama are having an impact.
Staring with a poll that was mentioned by The Mad King in an earlier Digital article, the New York Times/CBS poll still has Obama in the lead but they noticed that while 51 percent say they believe he will be the eventual nominee, that number has dropped 18 percentage points (from 69 percent) in just one month.
A NBC/Wall Street Journal survey where Obama's lead has narrowed and his favorable rating has dropped. As of March, 51 percent of voters viewed him positively and 28 percent saw him negatively, but in the new poll 46 percent view him favorably, but 37 percent negatively.
In the Fox News/Opinion Dynamics poll where Clinton leads by a small margin and again Obama's unfavorable rating is up 9 points since February and by 10 percentage points, Democrats now view Clinton as likelier than Obama to beat presumptive Republican nominee John McCain. Democrats gave Obama a 4-point edge last month.
A Quinnipiac University poll, Clinton runs stronger than Obama in match-ups against McCain in the general election swing states of Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Florida. Clinton would get 49 percent to McCain's 41 percent in Florida, leads 48 percent to 38 percent in Ohio, and 51 percent to 37 percent in Pennsylvania.
The InsiderAdvantage poll taken in mid-April shows that in just two weeks, Obama has gone from a double digit lead over Clinton to trailing her by 2 points. (More results)
The results were:
Hillary Clinton: 44%
Barack Obama: 42%
Undecided: 14%
Last but not least, the Rasmussen report, shows even worse news for Barack Obama, with John McCain now attracting 46 percent of the general election vote while Barack Obama earns only 43 percent. Just before Wright had his press conference on Monday, McCain and Obama were even.
Furthermore, even though it is no long a concern for primaries or caucuses but as with all states, will be in play for the general election, Rasmussen also shows that in New Hampshire, 56 percent say Obama denounced Wright because it was politically convenient. Only 33 percent believe he was truly outraged.
In Indiana, where the race had been a toss-up in surveys last week, Clinton now leads in the three most recent polls. She is ahead 46 percent to 41 percent in a Rasmussen survey, 50 percent to 42 percent in Public Polling Policy survey, and 52 percent to 43 percent in a SurveyUSA poll.
On and on the world of politics goes and this party fracturing contest between Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama shows no signs of ending and the divisions are so deep and becoming so entrenched within the Democratic party supporters that some claim they will sit out the election in November if their candidate doesn't win the nomination.
Others are stating publicly they will simply vote for John McCain.
Not all of them will follow through, for some it is an empty threat, but if even a quarter of them do follow through, then it is the nightmare scenario that Democratic party leaders have stated they feared months ago.
May 6, 2008 is coming fast and Barack Obama has the delegate lead which is a major problem for the Democratic leaders as well as the superdelegates.
This Wright controversy has badly damaged Barack Obama in the Democratic contest for the nomination of the party and if it can do that kind of harm to him in this contest, the superdelegates have to be asking themselves right about now, how badly this will hurt Obama in the general election campaign if they should give him the nod.
Handling pressure such as the whole Wright situation has caused for Obama, is also something superdelegates and voters alike will look for and recent accounts showing that Obama is having a hard time remembering where he is or even the very date, is making people question how he could handle the pressure of the highest office in the US, the presidency.
That's been his problem lately on the campaign trail--not knowing exactly where he was. He even made a joke about it in Hickory when he tried to recall where he had just met someone whose story he wanted to tell. "We were down in--where were we?" Quickly he came up with Winston-Salem, and everybody laughed. Monday in Wilmington, however, not only did he seem not to know Wilmington but the date and time, saying that it was "March" and "nine months to November." The fact that his audiences are largely composed of die-hard fervent loyalists usually masks this underlying dis-connection.
When a site like Huffington Post, who is unabashedly in Barack Obama's corner starts reporting such things...there is a problem.
On the other hand, with his lead in delegates, if they do not give him the nod and hand it to Hillary despite the delegate count, Obama supporters will be outraged and feel betrayed by the party as a whole.
This is what is called....being between a rock and hard place.
More about Hillary clinton, Obama, Polls