Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Democratic Tracking Poll: President

Barack Obama 44
Hillary Clinton 43

The Jeremiah Wright controversy has hurt Barack Obama in recent PPP polls in Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania and North Carolina is no different. Clinton is the closest she's been to Obama in the state since John Edwards dropped out of the race.

Clinton actually leads among Democrats in the poll, 44-43. But Obama has the overall lead based on a very strong performance with unaffiliated voters, with whom he has a 53-35 advantage.

The rules for voting in the North Carolina primary probably work to Clinton's advantage. Obama has done very well in states with open primaries because of his strong support from Republican and independent voters. But North Carolina has a closed primary with the exception of unaffiliated voters, who may choose which party's ballot they want to cast. Right now they're only making up 12% of the Democratic primary electorate.

The biggest movement in Clinton's direction since PPP's poll two weeks ago is among female voters. Obama led them by 4 in the last survey, Clinton now has a 2 point advantage.

Some folks in the national media seem to have written off North Carolina for Obama but it looks like the state could be up for grabs, particularly if Obama can't put his recent bad press behind him quickly.

Full results here.

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