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The Democratic Strategist

Political Strategy for a Permanent Democratic Majority

New Data on Southeastern States

Via pollster.com, we learn that Elon University has done a presidential nominating candidacy poll of adults (e.g., no screen for registration or likelihood to vote) in VA, NC, SC, GA and FL.
This is interesting because most prior primary polls in the South have focused strictly on South Carolina and Florida.
Among Dems, Elon has HRC well ahead, at 45%, with Obama at 17% and Edwards at 11%. Front-runner-factor notwithstanding, this is pretty impressive, since Edwards is a southern white male (with his home state and native state in the mix), and Obama is an African-American (the black share of the Dem vote in these states is probably somewhere between a fourth and a third of the total).
On the GOP side, Rudy leads with 25%, with Big Fred at 16%, Romney at 12%, and McCain and Huckabee tied at 8%.
All these numbers are obviously vulnerable in a big way to early state results and regional campaigning. But it does indicate that all the down-ballot-fear-of-HRC stuff we hear about Southern Democrats is an elite, not popular, phenomenon, and that Rudy’s national lead is predictably smaller in the SE, and even more inviting to a candidate who can unite conservatives before the first Southerners vote in SC.

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