Mark Blumenthal | March 26, 2008
Clinton 45%, Obama 45% (Clinton led 47% to 43% on 3/7-10 survey)
Obama 44%, McCain 42%
McCain 46% Clinton 44%
The lead of Jackie Calmes' Wall Street Journal poll story:
The racially charged debate over Barack Obama's relationship with his longtime pastor hasn't much changed his close contest against Hillary Clinton, or hurt him against Republican nominee-in-waiting John McCain, according to a new Wall Street Journal/NBC News poll.
Democratic pollster Peter Hart, who conducts the Journal/NBC polls with Republican pollster Bill McInturff, called the latest poll a "myth-buster" that showed the pastor controversy is "not the beginning of the end for the Obama campaign."
And from Chuck Todd's must read analysis on First Call:
As for the damage [the Wright] controversy did or didn't do to Obama, it's a mixed bag. Yes, Obama saw some of his numbers go down slightly among certain voting groups, most notably Republicans. But he's still much more competitive with independent voters when matched up against John McCain than Hillary Clinton. And he still sports a net-positive personal rating of 49-32, which is down only slightly from two weeks ago when it was 51-28. Again, the biggest shift in those negative numbers were among Republicans.
The survey also includes questions on the Wright controversy and Obama's response. Todd's write up includes this passage, especially relevant to the previous post on defectors:
One thing about these head-to-head matchups: our pollsters found that for the second poll in a row, more than 20% of Clinton and Obama supporters say they would support McCain when he's matched up against the other Democrat. There is clearly some hardening of feelings among some of the most core supporters of both Democrats, though it may be Obama voters, who are more bitter in the long run.
Why? Because among Obama voters, Clinton has a net-negative personal rating (35-43) while Clinton voters have a net-positive view of Obama (50-29). Taken together, this appears to be evidence that Obama, intially, should have the easier time uniting the party than Clinton.