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Poll Roundup: Clinton Dominates in Remaining Contests

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In the three weeks since the last presidential primary contest in Mississippi, and the four weeks since the Texas and Ohio primaries, little has changed in the race for the Democratic presidential nomination.

As projected here at Smart Politics last month, Hillary Clinton has the decided advantage over Barack Obama in almost all of the remaining ten contests, with the exception of North Carolina and possibly Oregon. Aside from those two states, all of the states yet to vote are non-coastal and each of the contests utilizes the primary format (Obama won 13 of the 15 caucuses).

Recent polling shows Clinton remains strong in most of these key states. In the first contest, Pennsylvania (188 delegates), a new SurveyUSA poll of 588 likely voters conducted March 29-31 measures Clinton's lead in double digits, 53 to 41 percent. Clinton has led Obama in all 30 public polls conducted in the Keystone State dating back to January 2007.

Indiana (84 delegates) holds its primary on May 6th, and SurveyUSA measures Clinton's lead at nine points—52 to 43 percent (530 likely voters, March 29-31).

West Virginia (39 delegates) holds its primary on May 13th, and a Rasmussen poll of 702 likely voters in mid-March showed Clinton with a whopping 28-point lead: 55 to 27 percent. If Clinton is to stand any chance at winning the pledged delegate vote, she will need to rack up this kind of margin of victory in almost all the remaining contests (which is not likely to happen). Clinton's primary plan is to string together several victories in a row at the finish line to win over enough superdelegates to overtake Obama's likely pledged delegate advantage.

The neighboring state of Kentucky (60 delegates) holds its primary on May 20th, and a new SurveyUSA poll gives Clinton a similar lead: 58 to 29 percent (572 likely voters, March 28-30).

Recent polling is not available in Oregon, Montana, South Dakota, Puerto Rico, and Guam.

In North Carolina, polls consistently show Obama in the lead, usually by double-digits. The latest survey, by American Research Group, gives Obama a 51 to 38 percent advantage.

So what has the month since the Texas and Ohio primaries given Democratic voters? A continuing controversy involving Obama's pastor, the opportunity for John McCain to look presidential and above the fray in his visits abroad, and, perhaps above all, a slight breather from the intense media coverage that dominated news cycles from December through early March. However, once Pennsylvania comes around and gives Clinton another big victory, expect all that to change.

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Remains of the Data

Plurality-Winning Governors Elected At Century-Long High Water Mark

The rate of gubernatorial candidates elected without the support of a majority of voters is at its highest level since the 1910s.

Political Crumbs

Seeing Red

Congressman Nick Rahall's failed bid for a 20th term in West Virginia this cycle, combined with a narrow loss by Nick Casey to Alex Mooney in Shelley Moore Capito's open seat, means that West Virginia Democrats will be shut out of the state's U.S. House delegation for the first time in over 90 years. The Republican sweep by two-term incumbent David McKinley in the 1st CD, Mooney in the 2nd, and Evan Jenkins over Rahall in the 3rd marks the first time the GOP has held all seats in the chamber from West Virginia since the Election of 1920. During the 67th Congress (1921-1923) all six seats from the state were controlled by the GOP. Since the Election of 1922, Democrats have won 76 percent of all U.S. House elections in the Mountain State - capturing 172 seats compared to 54 for the GOP.


Home Field Advantage?

When the 114th Congress convenes in a few days, Maine will be represented by one home-grown U.S. Representative: Waterville-born Republican Bruce Poliquin. With the departure of Millinocket-born Mike Michaud, who launched a failed gubernatorial bid, the Pine Tree State was poised to send a House delegation to D.C. without any Maine-born members for the first time since 1821. Three-term U.S. Rep. Chellie Pingree (born in Minnesota) coasted to reelection as expected, however Poliquin edged Kentucky-born Emily Cain by 5.3 points to keep the streak alive. Since 1876, a total of 208 of the 222 candidates elected to the nation's lower legislative chamber from the state have been born in Maine, or 94 percent.


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