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Final IN / NC Polls; Live Blog Tonight

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Three more polls of likely voters in North Carolina and two of likely voters in Indiana were released today. In North Carolina, Barack Obama's lead over Hillary Clinton continues to be measured from very large to very small:

Zogby: Obama 51, Clinton 37
American Research Group: Obama 50, Clinton 42
Insider Advantage: Obama 47, Clinton 43

Zogby is the only pollster to have shown the race to be in the double-digits for Obama during the past week. ARG has gradually shown a slight deterioration in Obama's lead from 13 points in late March, to 11 points in mid-April, to 10 points ten days ago, to 9 points last Thursday, to 8 points through this past weekend. If Obama continues to receive 90 percent of the projected black vote in North Carolina, he should carry the state.

In Indiana, Clinton has been leading in all polls in recent days, with the exception of the final Zogby tracking poll:

Zogby: Obama 45, Clinton 43
American Research Group: 53, Obama 45

Smart Politics will blog live Tuesday night as the primary results from both states come in. In addition to real-time reporting of results and media watchdog commentary, Smart Politics will examine the impact of the results on the upcoming primary contests. Live blogging will commence at 6 p.m. CST when polls close in Indiana.

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Remains of the Data

No Free Passes: States With 2 Major Party Candidates in Every US House Race

Indiana has now placed candidates from both major parties on the ballot in a nation-best 189 consecutive U.S. House races, with New Hampshire, Minnesota, Idaho, and Montana also north of 100 in a row.

Political Crumbs

Gubernatorial Highs and Lows

Two sitting governors currently hold the record for the highest gubernatorial vote ever received in their respective states by a non-incumbent: Republican Matt Mead of Wyoming (65.7 percent in 2010) and outgoing GOPer Dave Heineman of Nebraska (73.4 percent in 2006). Republican Gary Herbert of Utah had not previously won a gubernatorial contest when he notched a state record 64.1 percent for his first victory in 2010, but was an incumbent at the time after ascending to the position in 2009 after the early departure of Jon Huntsman. Meanwhile, two sitting governors hold the record in their states for the lowest mark ever recorded by a winning gubernatorial candidate (incumbent or otherwise): independent-turned-Democrat Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island (36.1 percent in 2010) and Democrat Terry McAuliffe of Virginia (47.8 percent in 2013).


An Idaho Six Pack

Two-term Idaho Republican Governor Butch Otter only polled at 39 percent in a recent PPP survey of the state's 2014 race - just four points ahead of Democratic businessman A.J. Balukoff. Otter's low numbers reflect his own struggles as a candidate (witness his weak primary win against State Senator Russ Fulcher) combined with the opportunity for disgruntled Idahoans to cast their votes for one of four third party and independent candidates, who collectively received the support of 12 percent of likely voters: Libertarian John Bujak, the Constitution Party's Steve Pankey, and independents Jill Humble and Pro-Life (aka Marvin Richardson). The six candidate options in a gubernatorial race sets an all-time record in the Gem State across the 46 elections conducted since statehood. The previous high water mark of five candidates was reached in seven previous cycles: 1902, 1904, 1908, 1912, 1914, 1966, and 2010.


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