Concerning that PPP poll that came out today showing Barack Obama with a two-point lead in PA (45%-43% over Hillary Clinton):
It doesn’t exist.
This might be counter-intuitive, but hear me out. The same thing happened in Ohio and Texas (and California, and New Jersey…):
- Clinton leads by a lot — 15 to 20 percentage points.
- Obama starts campaigning.
- Clinton’s lead shrinks.
- Obama takes the lead, then increases it.
- People go nuts, assume he’s going to win, which then leads to
- People getting cold feet, which then leads to
- Obama’s lead shrinking, then vanishing, which then leads to
- Clinton winning said primary, claiming a “miracle” and other silliness
You’d think that after all this time, we’d figure out the pattern. So here’s my prediction for the next three weeks:
- Obama will take the lead in more than one Pennsylvania poll.
- Everyone will assume that Obama will close this out.
- Hillary will battle with her back seemingly against the wall.
- As the primary draws closer, his lead will shrink, then disappear.
- Hillary will end up winning Pennsylvania fairly comfortably (56%-44%?)
- Questions will then be raised about his ability to close out the race.
Folks? Pennsylvania is just like Ohio, only more so. It’s a closed primary, and Hillary Clinton’s got Gov. Ed Rendell’s machine behind her. Obama’s chances of winning in Pennsylvania — no matter what the polls say — are vanishingly small.
Please, let’s just concentrate on holding the margin down in Pennsylvania, and winning in Indiana and North Carolina, two states where he does have a solid shot at winning. Buying into the latest poll-of-the-week just leads to angst down the road.