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Following up on an earlier item, it seems pretty clear that Barack Obama’s speech on race in America has helped the senator rebound a bit. The latest CBS News poll highlighted the trend, as does the latest Gallup tracking poll.
Barack Obama has quickly made up the deficit he faced with Hillary Clinton earlier this week, with the latest Gallup Poll Daily tracking update on Democratic presidential nomination preferences showing 48% of Democratic voters favoring Obama and 45% Clinton.
Obama’s campaign clearly suffered in recent days from negative press, mostly centering around his association with the controversial Rev. Jeremiah Wright. Perhaps as a result, Clinton moved into the lead in Gallup’s Wednesday release, covering March 16-18 polling. But Obama has now edged back ahead of Clinton due to a strong showing for him in Friday night’s polling, perhaps in response to the endorsement he received from well-respected New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson, a former rival for the nomination.
More specifically, four days ago, the Gallup tracking poll showed Clinton leading Obama by seven (49%-42%), her largest lead since early February. Today’s tracking poll, however, shows Obama back up by three (48%-45%), pointing a 10-point swing in less than a week.
In Jim VandeHei’s and Mike Allen’s much-discussed Politico piece yesterday, the two wrote, “[E]ven some of Clinton's own advisers now concede that she cannot win unless Obama is hit by a political meteor. Something that merely undermines him won’t be enough. It would have to be some development that essentially disqualifies him.”
There was clearly some hope in the Clinton campaign that the Jeremiah Wright story would be that political meteor, which contributed to the campaign quietly pushing the controversy. Given Obama’s rebound in the polls, it appears this won’t be the bolide the Clintons were hoping for.
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Steve Benen is a freelance writer/researcher and creator of The Carpetbagger Report. In addition, he is the lead editor of Salon.com's Blog Report, and has been a contributor to Talking Points Memo, Washington Monthly, Crooks & Liars, The American Prospect, and the Guardian.