Obama beats McCain 13%
in 4-man nationwide relay
Barack up 43% among Hispanic votes
By MITCH R. CONFESOR
25 July 2008
DEMOCRATIC frontrunner Barack Obama has a 13-point lead over Republican contender John McCain in a four-man presidential race including perennial nuisance candidate Ralph Nader and Libertarian progressive Bob Barr, according to an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released on Wednesday.
In the four-man race, Obama leads at 48 percent, McCain follows at 35 percent, while Nader trails behind at 5 percent and Barr at 2 percent, the poll said. Meanwhile, in a two-man race, Obama leads McCain by 47 to 41 percent for the November election, or 6 percent unchanged from last month.
With an overall error margin of plus or minus 3.1 percentage points, the survey of 1,003 registered voters was conducted July 18-21, during the start of Obama’s trip to the Middle East and Europe.
But according to a nationwide survey of 2,015 Latinos conducted from June 9 through July 13 by the Pew Hispanic Center, a project of the Pew Research Center, registered Hispanic voters support Obama over McCain by 66 to 23 percent, or a 43-percent lead.
It said Obama’s strong showing in the Hispanic survey has represented a sharp reversal in his fortunes from the primaries, when Obama lost the Latino vote to Hillary Clinton by a nearly two-to-one ratio, giving rise to then speculations in some quarters that Hispanics had been disinclined to vote for a black candidate.
Yet in the new survey, three times as many respondents said being black would help Obama (32 percent) with Latino voters than those who said it would hurt him (11 percent). The majority (53 percent) said his race would make no difference to Latino voters.
Obama is rated favorably by 76 percent of Latino registered voters, making him much more popular among that voting group than McCain (44 percent favorable) and President George Bush (27 percent favorable). Clinton’s ratings among Latino registered voters are 73 percent favorable and 24 percent unfavorable; Obama’s are 76 percent favorable and 17 percent unfavorable.
Further, the survey said more than three-quarters of Latinos who reported that they had voted for Clinton in the primaries now say they are inclined to vote for Obama in the fall election, while just 8 percent say they are inclined to vote for McCain.
That means that Obama is doing better among Hispanics who supported Clinton than he is among non-Hispanic white Clinton supporters, 70 percent of whom now say they have transferred their allegiance to Obama while 18 percent say they plan to vote for McCain, according to a recent survey by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press.
Aside from their strong support for Obama, the survey said, Latino voters have moved sharply into the Democratic camp in the past two years, reversing a pro-Republican tide that had been evident among Latinos earlier in the decade.
According to the survey, some 65 percent of Latino registered voters now say they identify with or lean toward Democrats, compared with just 26 percent who identify with or lean toward Republicans.
This 39-percentage point Democratic identification edge is larger than it has been at any time this decade, the survey said. It added that as recently as 2006, the partisan gap was just 21 percentage points.