Barack Obama 47
John McCain 45
Bob Barr 3
With concern about the economy continuing to mount, Barack Obama has taken the lead for the first time in a PPP poll of North Carolina.
Over the last year there's been a strong relationship between the number of North Carolinians listing the economy as their biggest concern, and Obama's standing in the polls. In January when just 39% of voters said it was their biggest issue John McCain led by 14 points. In August with it up to 48% Obama trailed by just three. Last week with 58% listing it number one the race was tied, and now with the number up to a record 64% Obama has taken a small lead. He is up 55-38 among respondents citing the economy as their main concern.
While the economy has become increasingly important, issues that don't bode well for Democrats in North Carolina have gone to the back burner. In January 13% of voters listed moral and family values as their top issue while 9% said immigration was. Those figures have now dropped to 9% and 2% respectively. Given that McCain leads 86-9 on moral and family values and 94-0 on immigration it seems safe to say that what is no longer as important to North Carolina voters is just as important to Obama's success as what is important to North Carolina voters.
Independents are moving toward Obama in droves. Where last week he had a 42-39 advantage with them, now he is up 48-37. He also now receives 36% of the white vote, up from 33%. He will likely need 35-38% in that demographic to win the state, depending on how high turnout from black voters is.
Full results here.