News from the Votemaster
Here is what the www.intrade.com charts for Obama and Clinton look like as of this morning. If you think Barack Obama is going to be the nominee, you can put down $90 and win $100 if he is nominated. If you think Hillary Clinton is going to win it, for $9 you can get $100 back. It's pretty clear what the market thinks.
SurveyUSA has posted a report card on the pollsters for North Carolina and Indiana. In North Carolina, which Obama won by 14%, Zogby came closest, predicting a 14% Obama win, right on the nose. Worst pollster was Insider Advantage, which predicted an Obama win of only 3%. In Indiana, which Clinton won by about 1%, Insider Advantage came closest, predicting a Clinton win by 4%. So Insider Advantage was the worst in North Carolina and the best in Indiana. What can you say? SurveyUSA did the worst of the lot in Indiana, predicting a 12% Clinton win. You have to give them some credit for compiling and posting this table, though.
Much has been written about effect of radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh instructing his (Republican) listeners to go vote in the Democratic primary for Hillary Clinton to keep her campaign alive. How much effect did it have? Sam Stein has an analysis based on the exit polls. Conclusion: it probably did have some effect but it is hard to see exactly how much. For example of the 17% of Democratic primary voters who said they would choose John McCain over Hillary Clinton, 41% voted for Clinton Tuesday. If they don't like her, why did they bother to vote in the Democratic primary? Because they are all racist bigots who want to make sure a black man is not even nominated? Seems unlikely when 84% of all Democratic voters said race wasn't even important to them.
The Washington Post has a story on the "Limbaugh effect" in Indiana. Limbaugh has now changed his mind and thinks Clinton would be the stronger candidate. He has apparently swallowed Clinton's "Obama can't win blue-collar workers" line. There is no doubt Clinton is stronger than Obama among blue-collar workers and Catholics, but this is probably largely due to the fact that they did well economically in Clinton 42 and were enthusiastic about Clinton 44. If the general election comes down to Obama vs. McCain and Clinton 44 is not an option, many of these people are going to see McCain as Bush III, an extension of an administration that has not been kind to them and figure that any Democrat is going to be better than more of the same, even a young and untested one.
The Republican slogan in the Presidential election of 1884 was "Ma, ma, where's my pa?," a reference to the fact that Democrat Stephen Cleveland (commonly called "Grover") had fathered an illegitimate child. Cleveland won anyway and Democrats famously added a line to the chant: "Gone to the White House, ha, ha, ha." Fathering an illegitimate child wasn't a big deal for a politician in 1884. We may soon find out how that flies in 2008. There is a scandal building in NY-13 the Staten Island-based seat occupied by Rep. Vito Fossella. What started out as an arrest for running a red light may soon turn into a full-blown sex scandal. Press reports have it that Fossella was going to visit his "good friend" Laura Fay, a retired Air Force officer who has a child whose paternity is unknown. When arrested, Fossella told the police officer that he was going to visit his daughter--on the street where Fay lives. The talk in Washington is about whether Fossella is going to be able to weather this or be forced to resign. Fossella could argue (1) it wasn't with a guy (like Sen. Larry Craig) and (2) I didn't pay for it (like Sen. David Vitter), so leave me alone, but it might not fly, even in liberal New York city. NY-13 is an evenly split (D+1) district. If Fossella quits or decides not to run again, DCCC chairman Chris Van Hollen will be whipping out his checkbook at the prospect of yet another possible pickup in New York, in addition to the open seats of NY-25 and NY-29. Another sex scandal is just what the Republicans need right now, even if it was a freebie with a woman.
Little noticed in Tuesday election in North Carolina was the victory of state senator Kay Hagan in the Democratic senatorial primary. Hagan will face the incumbent, Liddy Dole (R-NC). A Research 2000 poll taken April 28-30 puts Dole ahead 48% to 41%, but this was before Hagan won the nomination. She will no doubt get a bounce now. This seat could be in play.
No new primary polls today.
The dust is beginning to settle from Tuesday's elections. Plus there were some new super delegate announcements yesterday. At the moment, it appears that Obama has a lead of 150-160 delegates, with only 217 pledged delegates left to go. While it is mathematically possible for Clinton to catch up by the end of June, it is extremey unlikely because the six remaining states are expected to break three for Clinton and three for Obama, leaving the final result about where it is now.
Needed to win: 2025
Here is another source for delegate totals.
-- The Votemaster