Gallup Also Shows Tie Nationally Between Clinton and Obama

Earlier today I noted that Rasmussen Reports found that Hillary Clinton's long-standing large lead over Barack Obama in national polling had all but vanished, falling within the poll's margin of error. Now a new national poll from Gallup shows that Clinton's lead hasn't essentially evaporated -- it has actually evaporated.

Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton and Sen. Barack Obama each drew 33% of the support from Democrats surveyed in its latest national poll, Gallup just announced.

In mid-December, well before Obama won last Thursday's Democratic caucuses in Iowa, Clinton held an 18-percentage point lead over him in Gallup's survey -- 45% to 27%.

Before today, Obama had never held or even shared the national lead with Clinton in Gallup's polling.

John Edwards remains third in Gallup's polling of Democrats. His support: 20%, vs. 15% in mid-December.

It's not clear how durable these numbers will be -- or if they even represent the end of the trend or just the beginning. At present, with a tie nationally, it's not clear that Clinton would be able to make up for early losses in the February 5 states, and she certainly could not if this trend continues and Obama actually takes a significant national lead. Nevertheless, this growth in support for Obama nationally could prove fleeting. There is quite a bit of time, still, between now and the beginning of February (nearly a month, in fact...), so there could be a potential for Clinton to stop some of the hemorrhaging of her support in time to make a real push for the big states that will chose their delegates on the superest of super Tuesdays.

Yet even leaving aside the longer term meaning of these numbers, one cannot help but think that this poll could serve to reinforce the results of Iowa in further indicating to voters nationwide, through the establishment media, that Obama can win. This is big time news for the Obama campaign in the short term, a further momentum boost at a time when it is trying to make its final push to make another statement tomorrow night. We've got a heckuva campaign on our hands, folks.

And one more point... John Edwards is not going away. He has vowed to stay in the race through the convention, for whatever that's worth, and he continues to maintain substantial support nationwide. It's not clear to me if he has a path to the nomination at this point -- I had trouble seeing one for him even in the case that he had won Iowa -- but it does seem quite possible that he will continue to play a meaningful role in this race for some time to come.

Tags: Barack Obama, Democratic primaries, Hillary Clinton, national poll (all tags)

Comments

42 Comments

Of course JRE will stay in the race

He has a chance to put his message in front of millions of people who haven't heard it before. That is all to the good, even if he is a longshot for the nomination.

by desmoinesdem 2008-01-07 12:18PM | 0 recs
Re: Of course JRE will stay in the race

Edwards showed excellent judgment when he used his post-caucus time to get his stump speech out before a wider audience.  The talking heads whined about how it wasn't more of a concession, but he knows that he gets very few opportunities to remind a national audience that he's actually in this race and these are the things he stands for.

He also sends the right message to supporters like me and you, people who thought he had a real shot to win Iowa and are maybe wondering a little bit about whether the campaign has a path to victory from here.  Rather than display any hesitation or sense of regret, it seems like he's fighting twice as hard now.  That's the kind of tone that keeps the supporters fired up and motivated.

by Steve M 2008-01-07 12:26PM | 0 recs
Re: Of course JRE will stay in the race

It would probably be better for my candidate if he dropped out, but I admire his spirit. We could have used more of that in 2000 (and frankly 2004), I hope he keeps it up.

by souvarine 2008-01-07 12:38PM | 0 recs
yes, I agree

it would have been stupid to play to the pundits at that point.

I have talked to several people who watched Saturday's debate and were really impressed with Edwards. Of course, these are Iowans, so it's too late for them to act on their feelings, but I imagine quite a few people in other states were watching and thinking, wow, this guy is talking about reality.

by desmoinesdem 2008-01-07 12:40PM | 0 recs
Re: Of course JRE will stay in the race

Edwards certainly has every right to stay in the  race, and god knows anything can happen in politics.  That said, as an Edwards supporter will you continue to support him after February 5th if he fails to win any states on super friggin duper tuesday?

by HSTruman 2008-01-07 12:42PM | 0 recs
You mean WHEN
right?
by Big Tent Democrat 2008-01-07 12:43PM | 0 recs
Re: Of course JRE will stay in the race

My support for Edwards is as much about his message as his personal qualities.  I think it is good for the Democratic Party and for the progressive movement that he stay in the race for as long as he can get people to listen.

I vote on Super Tuesday and after that day, I'm not sure why anyone would care who I support anyway.  Events will play out and I'll be all about the Democratic nominee whoever it may be.

by Steve M 2008-01-07 12:47PM | 0 recs
Re: Of course JRE will stay in the race

I was just trying to figure out whether you anticipate a real nomination battle after the 5th.  I gather from you statement you do not, which is also my view.  

by HSTruman 2008-01-07 12:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Of course JRE will stay in the race

Heck, don't look to me for a prediction.  I had the Steelers and the Redskins on Saturday.

by Steve M 2008-01-07 12:59PM | 0 recs
as I said downthread

Obama supporters should be happy for Edwards to stay in the race. The right-wing hate machine will not start to unload on Obama until they are 100 percent sure that Edwards is out of it.

by desmoinesdem 2008-01-07 12:54PM | 0 recs
Re: as I said downthread

I'm not sure that's because the GOP is scared of Edwards, but I don't disagree that it will benefit whoever the Dem nominee is to keep the primary going for a bit.  Ultimately, it's problematic if the media gets bored too soon.  That's when the truly ridiculous stories, about whoever the nominee is, will get written.  

by HSTruman 2008-01-07 12:59PM | 0 recs
SC: Obama 50%, HRC 30%

Obama is getting 69% of the black vote.

http://www.surveyusa.com/client/PollRepo rt.aspx?g=066ea20c-d300-48cd-a585-cc9c35 6df4eb

My God.

by Louverture 2008-01-07 12:21PM | 0 recs
As I noted in this diary

in June, the average swing in National polling from Iowa and New Hampshire is 33 points.

http://www.mydd.com/story/2007/8/20/1353 42/944#readmore

My guess is that this bounce will bigger.

And let me vent: why don't people look at history when commenting on polling.  No baseball writer would report on a batting average without look at baseball history.

Baseball reporters have a higher standard for accuracy than political reporters.

by fladem 2008-01-07 12:21PM | 0 recs
Re: As I noted in this diary

Thats because baseball reporters aren't trying to influence the outcome. They just want to talk about the game they love.

by JDF 2008-01-07 12:25PM | 0 recs
Oh Happy Day

My people are finally making me proud with their rejection of HRC.

by Louverture 2008-01-07 12:25PM | 0 recs
Re: Gallup Also Shows Tie Nationally

Louverture its not a rejection of HRC. I think  its just more support for Obama.

by TennesseeGurl 2008-01-07 12:27PM | 0 recs
Re: Gallup Also Shows Tie Nationally

Yes, you are probably right. I'm getting carried away.

by Louverture 2008-01-07 12:34PM | 0 recs
I suspect you are right

Although there are some anybody-but-Hillary Democrats, most of them like Hillary--they just like others better.

by desmoinesdem 2008-01-07 12:34PM | 0 recs
To quote Authur Miller

Like Willy Loman, Hillary is liked, but not WELL liked.

by fladem 2008-01-07 01:31PM | 0 recs
Re: Gallup Tie Nationally Clinton and Obama

Can't spell "inevitable" without "Evita."  

by Thom 2008-01-07 12:30PM | 0 recs
Re: Gallup Also Shows Tie Nationally Between Clint

And one more point, no one is going to say they are going to drop at until they drop out.  Biden and Dodd were going all the way to the convention.  And then suddenly they weren't. If Edwards gets less than 20% in NH and the next day the Culinary Union endorses Obama, there are going to be some serious discussions.

by Piuma 2008-01-07 12:30PM | 0 recs
no, he will stay in

Why not? There's always a chance that HRC will be forced out of the race, after which some big story will emerge about Obama.

Actually, you should hope that Edwards stays in the race as long as possible, even if Obama does win the nomination. The GOP will not start to unload on Obama until they know for sure that Edwards is out of it. They do not want to run against Edwards.

by desmoinesdem 2008-01-07 12:36PM | 0 recs
But there will be no more campaigning
in earnest after this imo. Obama will sweep Sout Carolina, raise a ton of money for February 5 and swamp the airwaves with ads. New Hampshire was the chance to campaign on issues. To explain, if he could, why Edwards was the change agent not Obama. After tomorrow night, there will be no other chances. It will be all big TV buys for Obama, and Edwards, with little money, going dark.
by Big Tent Democrat 2008-01-07 12:42PM | 0 recs
why would he need to go dark?

He's still raising money and can borrow against expected matching funds. He can afford to buy a few days of tv ads in a bunch of states.

I actually agreed with you about Edwards' strategy during the debate on Saturday.

I could see the thinking behind what he is doing, though. He figures that if HRC is forced from the race and the media start to put Obama under real scrutiny, he still has a shot. On the other hand, if HRC has a reasonably strong second place showing in NH, he will get less media oxygen.

by desmoinesdem 2008-01-07 12:56PM | 0 recs
I do not see
how either Clinton or Edwards do much of anythig after this. Being Clinton she wil be covered of course. And being Edwards he won't. Look, if anyone wants to go back to my original posting on polls and whatnot, I ALWAYS said Iowa was everything for Obama and Edwards and for Hillary if Obama won. Yep, I was right. No offense, but we have a shitty system when Iowa picks our nominee every 4 years.
by Big Tent Democrat 2008-01-07 01:54PM | 0 recs
Re: I do not see

Iowa hasn't always right? Obviously in the case of Bill Clinton, but haven't there been others?

by dmc2 2008-01-07 02:27PM | 0 recs
Re: I do not see

Yeah, they picked Gephardt in '88, McGovern was 3rd in '72 (counting "uncommitted") and Carter was second in'76 after "uncommitted".

Moreover, don't trust precedent for president. There aren't enough elections in a generation to create good data. There are simply a million things you could measure, and some of them have always tilted a certain way. That does not make each one the key factor. If it did we'd be screwed for not choosing a governor.

by JoeFelice 2008-01-07 03:24PM | 0 recs
Exactly

The "will fight 'till the very end and the convention" is standard boilerplate for any campaign and candidate who isn't announcing they are dropping out in the very speech they are then giving.

by lestatdelc 2008-01-07 03:37PM | 0 recs
After NH
Obama will zoom to a 10 point lead over Hillary nationally and the campaign will be basically over. There will be no more messages delivered by anyone until the GE campaign. I have seen this song before.
by Big Tent Democrat 2008-01-07 12:39PM | 0 recs
Re: After NH

I don't know. I hope it goes on longer. With the Rezko trial coming up I hope there's at least one other candidate in the race especially if it's Obama because if they unload something and collapse his campaign we won't have anyone else to turn to.

by Ga6thDem 2008-01-07 12:48PM | 0 recs
Re: After NH

I wouldn't expect anything of substance to come out of the Rezko trial, other than the Republicans trying to call attention to it.  Isn't Patrick Fitzgerald the prosecutor?  One thing we know about him is that he's very circumspect about keeping collateral political issues from coming into the case.

by Steve M 2008-01-07 12:54PM | 0 recs
Re: After NH

Patrick Fitzgerald is the attorney but I wouldn't guarantee that it won't hurt Obama because he has done business deals with him.

by Ga6thDem 2008-01-07 01:06PM | 0 recs
Re: After NH

I think you called that correctly.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-01-07 12:58PM | 0 recs
Over The Summer...

The Obama campaign was telling volunteers that they intended to replicate Kerry's quick sprint through Iowa and NH to the nomination. Obviously, everything is going exactly as planned. The Democratic race is over tomorrow night, once the results are announced every pundit on television will say as much.

by HatchInBrooklyn 2008-01-07 01:32PM | 0 recs
Re: Over The Summer...

We still have a lot of work to do.  Now comes the real challenges.

by Shaun Appleby 2008-01-07 02:58PM | 0 recs
Then you don't know primary history

because big bounces, which I have documented, can also fade.

I think Obama is going to win, but the notion that the race is over is simply wrong.

by fladem 2008-01-07 01:42PM | 0 recs
Re: Then you don't know primary history
Oh yes I do. I am telling you what is going to happen. You keep thinking this is going to change. IT ain't. It is over. Done.
by Big Tent Democrat 2008-01-07 01:55PM | 0 recs
Re: Gallup Also Shows Tie Nationally Between Clint

Notice that this is the highest Edwards has been in a national poll according to pollster.com

Edwards is on the upswing, not the downswing.

by jsamuel 2008-01-07 01:08PM | 0 recs
Once again, georgep...reveal yourself?!?!?

by Louverture 2008-01-07 01:12PM | 0 recs
Every candidate says they will fight on to the end

Right up until the drop out.

by lestatdelc 2008-01-07 03:29PM | 0 recs
EWARDS IS REAL DEAL

I'm glad that Obama has come on so strong. I hope he takes it to Clinton in N.H. and fatally bursts her bubble. But, if John Edwards can stay in it, he can do well in South Carolina and then Nevada, and come Super Tuesday, he's got a right good chance. I hope so. Edwards is the Real Deal, a fighter for the poor and the middle class.

Edwards-Obama would be just the ticket in 2008. None of the Republicans can beat him. And Obama can get some seasoning for 2016.

by radlib1 2008-01-07 05:19PM | 0 recs
Re: Gallup Also Shows Tie Nationally Between Clint

A lot can happen between now and the end of August and Rove's brain is already working overtime. Edwards will not leave us without a choice.

Also, if it comes out like I suspect that Oprah has a deal for the film rights on Obama's books, and the public gets wind of the millions involved in that for each of them, it could put a serious dent in his campaign.

Edwards, thoroughly vetted and unbeatable, is their greatest threat.

by Julia02110 2008-01-07 06:10PM | 0 recs

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