Echoes of John Kerry in Obama’s Support

Posted May 7, 2008 at 4:47pm

Gallup says that a Barack Obama race against John McCain stacks up very similarly to the 2004 contest between John Kerry and George Bush, according to an analysis of its May 1-5 data. Of course, no one probably has to remind Gallup that Kerry lost, so we’re not sure if the pollster is just being the bearer of bad news. But Gallup’s main point was to address the disparity between Obama and Hillary Clinton when it came to the higher level of support she had among white voters in most primaries, and what that said about Obama’s strengths and weaknesses.

Gallup said that white voters back McCain over Obama by 53 percent to 37 percent, compared to Bush’s 58 percent to 41 percent margin over Kerry among them, as measured by CNN exit polls in 2004. Gallup goes on to say that the “way Obama stacks up against McCain at this point is similar to the way in which Kerry performed against Bush in 2004 within several key racial, educational, religious, and gender subgroups.”

Today’s Gallup daily tracking poll, conducted May 2-6 for all voters, has both Democrats neck-and-neck with McCain et 46 percent to 45 percent. In the Democratic race, Obama is at 47 percent to Clinton’s 46 percent, with 5 percent expressing no opinion. This survey was conducted May 4-6 with a margin of error of 3 points.