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Thursday, April 10, 2008
By Steven L. Taylor

Apart from the obvious, what would constitute a “win” for Obama in the upcoming Pennsylvania primary? This is certainly more of a perceptual issue than anything else–and that is no small issue this year, given that perception of the situation will directly inform the behavior of the superdelegates. It does seem to me that if Obama can get the overall state win for Clinton to be in the 5% range, then it will be difficult for Clinton to receive the kind of coverage that she needs to treat Pennsylvania as some sort of turning point. Really, any single-digit Clinton win will be treated as tainted, I would think.

Of course, barring an utter (and utterly improbable) crushing of Obama by Clinton, Obama will emerge with a healthy number of delegates, making even a Clinton “win” not much of one (like her wins in California, Ohio and Texas, to name three).

This comes up in my mind, given the latest Time poll numbers: Clinton Hangs Onto Lead in Pennsylvania

When leaners — voters who have not firmly decided whom to vote for but are leaning one way or the other — are added in, Clinton’s six point lead grows to eight points, 49% to 41%.

Clinton leads Obama overall 44% to 38% among all Democrats in the TIME survey, but enjoys a notably broader margin of support among white Democratic women: 56% to Obama’s 25%. More evenly split, by contrast, are white male Democrats, who prefer Clinton by a narrower margin of 44% to 36%.

Even beyond the Time poll, Pollster.com’s trend poll of polls for Pennsylvania (through 4/8) shows doing a good job of closing the gap:

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5 Responses to “What Constitutes a “Win” for Obama in Pennsylvania?”

  1. Political Mavens » Question: What Constitutes a “Win” for Obama in Pennsylvania? Says:

    [...] here in terms of info on the latest Time poll, a graph from Pollster.com and the ability to comment on [...]

  2. Poll Report: Slipping Away | Comments from Left Field Says:

    [...] Wake up America, MSNBC and PoliGazette.   TalkLeft, Telegraph, Marc Ambinder, The Moderate Voice, PoliBlog (TM), Donklephant, The Page, Political Machine, Below The Beltway, PoliGazette, TPM Election Central and [...]

  3. Chris Lawrence Says:

    Given the delegate counts for each district, I think the criterion for an effective Obama win is “gets as many pledged delegates as Clinton.” I think he can lose by 5% statewide and still do that; much of Clinton’s vote is going to come from parts of the state that are penalized under the D’s delegate selection rules for swing voting, and the “statewide” 55 delegates aren’t compensatory for the 103 selected from the CDs.

  4. PoliBlog (TM): A Rough Draft of my Thoughts » Zogby Poll: Clinton’s Lead in PA: 4% Says:

    [...] back to my question from earlier in the week, I think that if these are the kinds of numbers we see at the end of the [...]

  5. PoliBlog (TM): A Rough Draft of my Thoughts » Clinton’s Lead in PA only 5% in Latest Poll Says:

    [...] of my post on this topic the other day, if Obama gets within 5%, the media will treat PA as a Pyhrric victory (at best) for Clinton, if [...]


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