As Democratic presidential hopefuls head into the South Carolina Primaries, Barack Obama has a commanding lead over Hillary Clinton in the polls. According to Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby Polls,Obama leads Hillary 41–26%
Real Clear Politics shows a rather wide lead for Obama in SC who in November 2007 trailed Hillary Clinton. Scott Rasmussen has it at Obama 43%, Hillary Clinton 28%. One thing is for certain, the once thought of Hillary cake walk to the Democratic nomination is a thing of the past.
Interviews with voters as they left their polling places indicated about half the electorate was black.
Half the voters said the economy was the most important issue in the race. About one quarter picked health care. And only one in five said it was the war in Iraq, underscoring the extent to which the once-dominant issue has faded in the face of financial concerns.
Roughly half the voters said former President Clinton’s campaigning for his wife was very important to their choice.
The exit poll was conducted by Edison Media Research and Mitofsky International for The Associated Press and the networks.
UPDATE II: Strong Turnout in South Carolina Primary
One has to wonder how will Hillary Clinton react to a double digit loss in SC? With signs pointing to a record turnout could a resounding win in South Carolina tonight by Barack Obama propel him into “Tsunami Tuesday”?
“Turnout has been steady, and some counties have described it as heavy,” said Chris Whitmire, spokesman for the state election commission. “Our absentee numbers indicate that we could have higher turnout than last weekend,” when the Republican Party held its primary.
Because the Democratic primary in S.C. is first to feature large number of black voters, could we see Hillary Clinton’s racial strategy back fire? The Q and O Blog poses an interesting question …
If John Edwards manages to slip by Hillary Clinton into 2nd, what effect will that have on the race? If he doesn’t manage at least second, is he gone? If he goes, who benefits the most?
In either case, I believe that this damages Team Clinton. A third place finish would be disastrous for Billery. If John Edwards left the race one would have to imagine that 6 or 7 in 10 voters would go for Barack Obama.
UPDATE III: (5:11pm edt) Barack Obama Declared Winner in South Carolina Primary.
Well that was quick. Now the real question is just how large the margin of victory will be and if Edwards can finish second.
While the race for second-place is too close to call, Sen. Hillary Clinton appears to be leading former Sen. John Edwards in the race for second. This is the second win of the nomination battle for Obama, who won the Iowa caucuses earlier this month, but this is his first win in a state with a sizable African-American population.
(CNN) — Barack Obama will win the South Carolina Democratic primary by a substantial margin, CNN projects based on exit polls.
COLUMBIA, S.C. – Barack Obama routed Hillary Rodham Clinton in the racially-charged South Carolina primary Saturday night, regaining campaign momentum in the prelude to a Feb. 5 coast-to-coast competition for more than 1,600 Democratic National Convention delegates.
Former Sen. John Edwards of North Carolina was running third, a sharp setback in the state where he was born and scored a primary victory in his first presidential campaign four years ago