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Posted by on May 24, 2008 in Politics | 3 comments

Election Poll Shocker: Dems may carry California in Fall

It takes time and money to conduct polling, and all of the politically addicted writers around the country really appreciate the effort that goes into it. But did the L.A. Times really need to invest the energy to conduct this poll?

Obama would take California in November, Times/KTLA poll finds

Less than four months after losing the California primary, Democrat Barack Obama leads Republican John McCain in projected November general election matchups, a new Los Angeles Times/KTLA Poll has found.

Obama, the Illinois senator who has inched close to his party’s nomination, would defeat McCain by seven points if the election were held today. New York Sen. Hillary Clinton, whose fortunes have faltered since her Feb. 5 drubbing of Obama in California, would eke out only a three-point victory, the poll found.

I understand that the media (old and new) always love something new to talk about, but have we really gotten to the point where someone is seriously questioning whether or not the Democrats can carry California in November? There are two points to bring up about these numbers. First, as we have pointed out repeatedly, we’re not going to see any serious hard numbers until the Democratic nomination is completed and had some time to settle out. These numbers still include large numbers of people who are Obama supporters saying they would vote for McCain over Clinton, and Clinton supporters saying they will support the Arizona Senator over Obama. This should largely evaporate later in the summer.

Second, flawed though the totals may be, it puts the lie to to the arguments made by both candidates about “who can carry which big states in the Fall” except for the true swing states. Just because, for example, Hillary Clinton won the Democratic primary against Obama in New York and California, this does not mean that suddenly the Republicans will pull those states in November if Obama is the nominee.

Hey, L.A. Times… if you really want to give us some useful polling data, head up North a little ways and let us know what’s going on in Oregon and Washington or out East a bit in the mountain states. Just a tip for ya’ll. Thanks!

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