Polls point to big Obama lead in SC

When I got an e-mail pointing me to these poll results yesterday…

New South Carolina Poll: Obama expands lead
Barack Obama 44
Hillary Clinton 28
John Edwards 15
Dennis Kucinich 1

… I held off on posting them, because I wanted independent confirmation from a source I know more about. Sure, as the e-mail pointed out, this outfit "correctly predicted John McCain’s victory in last weekend’s Republican primary," but then so did a lot of people.

I will say in Public Policy Polling’s behalf that The Wall Street Journal had no such qualms, reporting its findings today without qualifications:

After lagging far behind Mrs. Clinton in state polls for much of last year, Mr. Obama has jumped ahead. According to an automated poll conducted Monday by Public Policy Polling of Raleigh, N.C., Mr. Obama leads Mrs. Clinton 44% to 28%, with about 12% of respondents undecided. As late as October, Mrs. Clinton had a 20-percentage-point lead in many surveys.

But for the sake of consistency, I tend to wait each day for Zogby’s latest (even though in one dramatic instance this season, he got it dramatically wrong, but who can account for such factors as this?). Anyway, here’s what Zogby had to say today:

Clinton nearly 20 points back; Edwards lags further
UTICA, New York – Buoyed by a tide of African-American support, Illinois Sen. Barack Obama is almost 20 points ahead of New York Sen. Hillary Clinton in the days ahead of the South Carolina Democratic Party primary.
    A Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby telephone poll taken Jan. 20-22 shows Obama holding 43% support from likely Democratic voters, compared to Clinton’s 25% support. Former North Carolina Sen. John Edwards trails at 15%. The survey included 811 likely Democratic primary voters and has a margin for error of +/-3.4 percentage points.
    African Americans, a group that made up slightly more than half of the sample, backed Obama by a margin of 65% to Clinton’s 16%. Eighteen percent of black voters said they were undecided. Clinton did better among white voters, getting 33% support to 32% for Edwards. Obama lagged at just 18% among whites.

I should add that, in commentary Zogby offered to paying subscribers, he also said the following:

    Like other states before, this race appears to be fluid. After the first night of polling, Obama led by some 20 points. The second night alone, Clinton was down by just 10. So, is there movement? Yes, back and forth.
    The question here in South Carolina is, if Obama wins South Carolina, will his win be big enough? If his lead is cut to single digits, given where this race has been in recent weeks, it stands to be a big victory for Clinton.

To me, that’s really stretching the expectations game. A win by Barack Obama in South Carolina, after having been well behind Sen. Clinton for most of 2007, is a clear, meaningful win. The Clinton campaign knows what’s coming, which is why she has left the state — to give herself implausible, "I-didn’t-really-try-in-South-Carolina" deniability.

9 thoughts on “Polls point to big Obama lead in SC

  1. The 7-10: Anthony Palmer

    Clinton has ceded South Carolina. Because of how she and her surrogates played the race card over the past two weeks, they are banking on Obama’s victory in the SC primary being tainted by the media’s attributing his win to “Black support” instead of his own political acumen.
    It’s all a matter of turning Obama from “the unity candidate who happens to be Black” into “the Black candidate.” Clinton will be all too happy to give up 80% of the Black vote to Obama in South Carolina if that means he’ll have to give up 80% of the White vote to her on Super Tuesday.

  2. Karen McLeod

    As someone who’s volunteering with the Obama campaign, I can tell you that the racial mix in their headquarters is so varied that I couldn’t begin to tell you the dominant racial make-up (besides, I’ve been far too busy to check it out thoroughly). But the atmosphere is upbeat and pleasant. People may be working with the floor for both chair and table, because there’s no room, but no one’s name-calling or fussing. There is no energy crisis there–positive personal energy is in surplus there. And I haven’t heard a word regarding specifically racial issues.

  3. tammy

    I think Anthony hit the nail on the head.

    Did y’all see the Dick Morris’s piece in the NY Post? According to him…a SC loss is all a part of the Clinton plan. I know he hates Hillary Clinton and wants to bring her down…but his theory makes sense and you can really already see it coming to fruition.

    Just check out Roland Martin’s piece on CNN about white Dems in SC being left out.   http://www.cnn.com/2008/POLITICS/01/22/roland.martin/index.html

    What a game politics is. I’m ready for them to get out of SC. I don’t think I’ll bother blogging on any of it anymore this week. It all makes me rather sad and stressed. Sigh.

  4. BionicWoman

    The Obama win in SC is meaningless to the rest of the country. No one takes it seriously because it is a black vote. This win won’t energize white and latino voters. I actually hope Obama gets this won. Its good for the blacks. But its his last stand.

  5. Mark

    Why is it that Obama is getting the a majority of the black vote? I thought black people were voting using their minds and not their skin color. That is the bottom line here. They are voting on skin color. I am a black male and I am upset that members of my race would be swayed by skin color. Sure we have always wanted a black president, but just not any. Hillary is much more experienced and ready to work on day 1. I hope my brothers and sisters can open their eyes to the false hopes Obama is giving them. Wake up South Carolina!! Obama is using his race to attract our vote. Why else would he be flaunting so many black celebrities in our face? This is a wake up call!!!

  6. alison weil

    you must be kidding?
    there is no such thing as “false” hope — in that case there is only recognition of the status quo
    so if you are happy with things as they are – up to you
    You may be posting a comment on State – but don’t think you’re reading it
    pm last time I looked Dick Harpootlian was white – so is Tom Daschle, John Kerry —
    you get the drift
    (ps: what would you call Magic Johnson, Bob Johnson etc tec– and I mean Bill was the first black president—not!)

  7. Stayonpoint

    Obama is Diversion
    Below are a few points for those of you who are considering voting for Obama as the Democratic candidate to pursue the Presidency. Please read and consider these points thoroughly before casting your vote:
    1. Obama is a Diversion;
    2. Over the last two years, the large powerful conservative new agencies owned by influential Republicans have purposely given Obama either neutral or positive news reporting in his run for presidency, amplifying his exposure and ratings amongst Democrats;
    3. The neutral/positive news reporting of Obama has split Democrats in choosing between Clinton or Obama as the Canidate to run for President;
    4. The conservative news agencies and powerful Republicans politicians are trying to manipulate the Democrats to choose Obama to run for President;
    5. When Obama is chosen to run for President, the conservative news agencies WILL turn on Obama by inciting (through negative reporting) the fears of Americans, and the Presidency will go to a Republican candidate;
    6. Please do not be manipulated and vote for Clinton (or urge them to unite). Democrats should unite together behind Clinton or else the Republicans will literally steal the presidency; or
    Obama and Clinton should unite or Obama should step-down to ensure a Republican is not elected to the presidency.
    This is in no way anti-Obama.(Bless you Obama for running; however unfortunate the timing, considering the above).
    The point of the above is to make us Democrats aware of a very possible scenario. We dealt with very similar manipulation the last eight years (remember Karl Rove?) and need to wake up. There is much at stake to let the powerful Republican politicians manipulate our vote.
    This is no means an attack on Republican citizens or Obama supporters, and much respect to you. Please consider the above points.

  8. bill kirkpatrick

    “Hillary is much more experienced and ready to work on day 1”
    Mark – You’ve drank the kool aid brother. Hillary has far less experience in government than Barack. Even though I voted for the Clintons two times in the past, this is one AA liberal that will never cast a vote for them again. No Billary presidency for me. I don’t want to relive the “Linda Tripp, Ms. Goldberg, Monica Lewinsky, Richard Mellon-Scaith, etc.” that became a daily part of Clinton’s presidency. This liberal is holding his nose and voting republican should she win the nomination. Please SC, help launch an Obama/Edwards ticket to play in the fall.

  9. foreclosures

    Howard Schultz, the former owner (who sold the team two years ago) has decided to sue the new owners. His goal; to declare the sale of the team null and void as a means of keeping the team in Seattle- and retuning his validity and helping his reputation so he will not be seen as the‘ man who lost the Sonics’. However, I personally fail to see how after two years, Schultz, has any legal claim to‘ undo’ the sale simply to make himself look good. I hope the courts wont waste to much time and tax dollars on this nonsense. The State on the other hand seems to have no problem wasting tax dollars and time on the issue at hand. The State Legislature and the Governor have decided to step in and have recently sent a letter to NBA Commissioner David Stern, urging him“ to reject or delay a scheduled vote on allowing the Sonics to move to Oklahoma City”. Somehow I imagine the State has more important things to do than write letters to the NBA. In any case; the team is not a matter of the state what so ever. If the city government in Seattle cared to keep them around they would make an effort; they have not. This is between the NBA, the current owners, the team, and Seattle.


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