Category Archives: Polls

The Superdelegate Shuffle

By Jeremy Barr

In every election cycle, it seems that one or two previously unimportant procedural terms enter the popular lexicon. In 2000, it was “hanging chad” and “butterfly ballot.” In 2008, “superdelegates” have become one of the most talked about factors in the contest for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Because neither Hillary Clinton nor Barack Obama can mathematically win the Democratic nomination with purely pledged delegates, the 795 unpledged party officials and representatives known as superdelegates will make the difference.

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Clinton Sailing Happily on Sinking Ship

hillary-clinton-ps.jpg

By Jeremy Barr

This morning, the Clinton campaign came out with their most ridiculous line of reasoning yet. The campaign released a memo saying that Barack Obama should sweep the March 4th primary states (Ohio, Texas, Rhode Island, Vermont), and if he doesn’t, “there’s a problem.” Thus the Clinton team has begun their next, and perhaps last, political strategy: raising expectations for their rival campaign to unreachable heights.

Although Obama holds a lead in the polls in Texas and Vermont, Ohio will be much tougher for the Senator. One should remember that Clinton held huge leads in states like Texas and Wisconsin (which recently went for Obama by 17%) until recently, and the fact that Obama is within 10 points in Ohio, a state which matches up very well for the Clintons, is a testament to the strength of his campaign.

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The Spin Contest

By Jeremy Barr

In presidential primary politics, almost equally important as actually winning primary contests is spinning the results to look like you have won. If you didn’t win the contest, it’s because the other side was forced to put more time and money into it.

Another trick of the trade is lowering expectations before a primary contest. If you win, it’s a huge victory. If you lose, it’s what you expected and had prepared for.

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