February 25, 2008 - Obama Gains On Clinton In Ohio Dem Primary Quinnipiac University Likely Voter Poll Finds; College-Educated Voters In Big Shift To Obama

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Buoyed by a big shift among college-educated voters, Illinois Sen. Barack Obama is gaining on New York Sen. Hillary Clinton, who now leads 51 - 40 percent among Ohio likely Democratic primary voters, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.

This compares to a 55 - 34 percent Clinton lead in a February 14 likely voter poll by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University. College-educated voters back Sen. Obama 58 - 33 percent, compared to a 46 - 41 percent Clinton lead with these voters February 14.

On the eve of the only televised debate between the two Democratic contenders in Ohio and just one week before the crucial March 4 primary, Sen. Clinton's large margins among women, 53 - 36 percent; older voters, whites and those without a college education keep her out front.

"Sen. Clinton's lead remains substantial, but the trend line should be worrisome for her in a state that even her husband, former President Bill Clinton, has said she must win," said Peter Brown, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute. "A week is an awful long time in politics to be playing defense, but one thing going in her favor is that she is viewed more favorably than is he by Ohio likely Democratic primary voters.

"Sen. Obama, to no one's surprise given his momentum nationally, has made inroads, especially among some of Sen. Clinton's softer supporters," said Brown. "If she is to stop his momentum in Ohio, she must retain her margins among her core backers - women, older voters and those lower on the social-economic and education scale."

"For instance, while she held leads of four points and 27 points among likely primary voters below and over age 45 respectively earlier this month, now she trails by 52 - 42 percent among the younger group and her margin has shrunk to 55 - 35 percent among older voters," said Brown.

When asked how they view the two candidates, 64 percent of likely primary voters view Sen. Obama favorably, 16 percent unfavorably. Sen. Clinton's numbers are 76 percent favorable, 17 percent unfavorable.

Compared to other states where Obama has taken more than 80 percent of the black vote, he leads 68 - 20 percent among blacks in Ohio, while Clinton leads among whites 59 - 33 percent.

If Arizona Sen. John McCain, the de facto Republican presidential nominee, were to pick Ohio's senior senator George Voinovich as his vice president, only 9 percent of registered voters, including 11 percent of independents, say they would be more likely to vote for McCain. But 18 percent of all voters, with 18 percent of independents, say it would make them less likely to vote for the Republican ticket. Overall, 70 percent say it would make no difference.

McCain's selection of Rob Portman, a former Ohio congressman and U.S. Trade representative, also would have no real effect. Five percent, including 6 percent of independents, would be more likely to vote for McCain; 12 percent, including 11 percent of independents, say it would make them less likely, and 76 percent say it would have no effect. Bush Approval

Ohio registered voters disapprove 69 - 28 percent of the job President George W. Bush is doing, his lowest score ever in the state. Voters say 65 - 30 percent that the U.S. economy is in a recession. But 56 percent of Ohio voters say their personal finances are "excellent" or "good," while 44 percent say they are "not so good" or "poor."

Voters also say 62 - 31 percent that going to war in Iraq was the wrong thing to do.

From February 18 - 23, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,853 Ohio registered voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.3 percent. The survey includes 741 likely Democratic primary voters with a margin of error of +/- 3.6 percentage points.

The Quinnipiac University Poll, directed by Douglas Schwartz, Ph.D., conducts public opinion surveys in Florida, Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Ohio and the nation as a public service and for research.

For more data -- http://www.quinnipiac.edu/x271.xml, or call (203) 582-5201.

1. If the 2008 Democratic primary for President were being held today, and the candidates were Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama for whom would you vote? (If undecided q1) As of today, do you lean more toward Clinton or Obama? This table includes "Leaners".
                        LIKELY DEM PRIMARY VOTERS..........................
                                                                Wht     Wht
                        Tot     Men     Wom     Wht     Blk     Men     Wom
 
Clinton                 51%     48%     53%     59%     20%     55%     61%
Obama                   40      45      36      33      68      39      29
SMONE ELSE(VOL)          1       1       1       1       -       1       1
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)         -       -       -       -       -       -       -
DK/NA                    9       7      10       7      12       5       9
 
                        Age     Age     No col College
                        18-44   45+     degree degree
 
Clinton                 42%     55%     57%     33%
Obama                   52      35      34      58
SMONE ELSE(VOL)          1       1       1       1
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)         -       -       -       -
DK/NA                    5       9       9       8
 
TREND: If the 2008 Democratic primary for President were being held today, and the candidates were Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama, for whom would you vote? (If undecided) As of today, do you lean more toward Clinton or Obama? *This table includes Leaners.
                        LIKELY DEMOCRATIC
                        PRIMARY VOTERS
                        Feb 25  Feb 14
                        2008    2008
 
Clinton                 51      55%
Obama                   40      34
SMONE ELSE(VOL)          1       2
WLDN'T VOTE(VOL)         -       -
DK/NA                    9       9
 
 
2. Is your opinion of -- Hillary Clinton favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about her?
                                LIKELY DEM PRIMARY VOTERS.........................
                        Reg                                             Wht     Wht
                        ToVote  Tot     Men     Wom     Wht     Blk     Men     Wom
 
Favorable               47%     76%     73%     78%     77%     73%     72%     80%
Unfavorable             41      17      21      14      17      16      24      12
Hvn't hrd enough         9       5       4       5       5       7       3       6
REFUSED                  3       2       1       3       2       4       1       2
 
                                Age     Age     No col College
                                18-44   45+     degree degree
 
Favorable                       71%     78%     77%     72%
Unfavorable                     21      15      16      19
Hvn't hrd enough                 7       4       5       6
REFUSED                          1       2       2       3
 
3. Is your opinion of -- Barack Obama favorable, unfavorable or haven't you heard enough about him?
                                LIKELY DEM PRIMARY VOTERS.........................
                        Reg                                             Wht     Wht
                        ToVote  Tot     Men     Wom     Wht     Blk     Men     Wom
 
Favorable               47%     64%     67%     62%     59%     87%     61%     57%
Unfavorable             26      16      14      17      19       -      17      21
Hvn't hrd enough        23      18      18      18      19      12      20      18
REFUSED                  4       2       1       3       3       1       2       3
 
                                Age     Age     No col College
                                18-44   45+     degree degree
 
Favorable                       70%     62%     58%     83%
Unfavorable                     13      17      19       6
Hvn't hrd enough                16      19      21       9
REFUSED                          2       2       2       3
 
 
7. Do you approve or disapprove of the way George W. Bush is handling his job as President?
                        REGISTERED VOTERS.......................................
                                                                        WtBrnAgn
                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Evnglcl
 
Approve                 28%     66%      5%     23%     33%     23%     42%
Disapprove              69      28      95      71      63      73      52
DK/NA                    4       6       1       6       4       4       6
 
                        Cntrl   NrthE   NrthW   SthE    SthW    WstCnt
 
Approve                 29%     22%     28%     25%     39%     34%
Disapprove              67      75      68      71      55      63
DK/NA                    3       3       3       5       7       4
 
TREND: Do you approve or disapprove of the way George W. Bush is handling his job as President?
                                                                Highest Lowest
                                                                Approve Approve
                        Feb 25  Feb 14  Nov 14  Sep 6   Jul 12  May 16  Feb 25
                        2008    2008    2007    2007    2007    2007    2008
 
Approve                 28      31      29      32      29      35      28
Disapprove              69      61      67      64      66      61      69
DK/NA                    4       7       4       5       5       4       4
 
 
12. If Republican presidential candidate John McCain picked Senator George Voinovich as his running mate, would that make you more likely to vote for McCain for president, less likely to vote for McCain for president or wouldn't it make a difference?
                                                                        WtBrnAgn
                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Evnglcl
 
More likely              9%     14%      3%     11%     10%      8%      8%
Less likely             18      16      21      18      17      20      20
Doesn't make diff       70      66      75      67      71      69      68
DK/NA                    3       3       2       3       2       4       4
 
                        Cntrl   NrthE   NrthW   SthE    SthW    WstCnt
 
More likely             11%      9%      7%      3%      6%     10%
Less likely             15      20      24      17      18      14
Doesn't make diff       72      67      68      76      72      71
DK/NA                    2       4       1       3       4       5
 
 
13. If Republican presidential candidate John McCain picked former cabinet member and U.S. Representative Rob Portman as his running mate would that make you more likely to vote for McCain for president, less likely to vote for McCain for president or wouldn't it make a difference?
                                                                        WtBrnAgn
                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Evnglcl
 
More likely              5%     10%      1%      6%      6%      4%      6%
Less likely             12       8      16      11      11      13      11
Doesn't make diff       76      74      78      76      77      76      72
DK/NA                    7       8       5       7       6       8      11
 
                        Cntrl   NrthE   NrthW   SthE    SthW    WstCnt
 
More likely              2%      4%      1%      2%     16%      4%
Less likely             13      12      13      11      12       8
Doesn't make diff       78      76      78      82      67      79
DK/NA                    7       7       8       5       5       8
 
 
14. Would you describe the state of the nation's economy these days as - Excellent, good, not so good, or poor?
                                                                        WtBrnAgn
                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Evnglcl
 
Excellent                1%      1%      -       1%      -       -       -
Good                    13      30       3      11      18       9      18
Not so good             36      46      25      40      39      33      38
Poor                    50      22      70      47      40      58      43
DK/NA                    1       1       1       1       1       1       1
 
                        Cntrl   NrthE   NrthW   SthE    SthW    WstCnt
 
Excellent                1%      1%      -       -       1%      -
Good                    14      10      13      10      21      15
Not so good             38      34      35      34      39      38
Poor                    46      55      51      55      39      46
DK/NA                    1       1       1       1       -       1
 
 
15. Would you describe your own personal financial situation as - Excellent, good, not so good, or poor?
                                                                        WtBrnAgn
                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Evnglcl
 
Excellent                6%      8%      4%      7%      8%      4%      3%
Good                    50      65      42      48      55      45      57
Not so good             30      19      38      28      26      33      26
Poor                    14       7      15      16      10      16      12
DK/NA                    1       1       2       1       1       2       1
 
                        Cntrl   NrthE   NrthW   SthE    SthW    WstCnt
 
Excellent                8%      5%      7%      3%      5%      5%
Good                    46      50      45      39      57      56
Not so good             29      30      31      39      24      30
Poor                    15      14      18      17      12       7
DK/NA                    2       1       -       2       2       1
 
 
16. During the next 12 months, do you think your own personal financial situation will get better, get worse, or stay about the same?
                                                                        WtBrnAgn
                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Evnglcl
 
Get better              29%     30%     27%     30%     32%     26%     24%
Get worse               12       9      13      13      12      12      12
Stay the same           57      60      57      55      54      60      61
DK/NA                    2       2       2       2       3       2       3
 
                        Cntrl   NrthE   NrthW   SthE    SthW    WstCnt
 
Get better              31%     27%     27%     25%     35%     27%
Get worse               10      12      17      15       8      11
Stay the same           55      58      56      57      55      60
DK/NA                    3       3       -       3       2       2
 
 
17. Do you think the United States economy is in a recession now?
                                                                        WtBrnAgn
                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Evnglcl
 
Yes                     65%     47%     79%     63%     60%     69%     60%
No                      30      49      17      30      36      25      34
DK/NA                    5       4       4       6       4       6       6
 
                        Cntrl   NrthE   NrthW   SthE    SthW    WstCnt
 
Yes                     61%     69%     68%     73%     55%     59%
No                      31      25      31      25      42      34
DK/NA                    7       5       2       3       4       7
 
 
18. Do you think going to war with Iraq was the right thing for the United States to do or the wrong thing?
                                                                        WtBrnAgn
                        Tot     Rep     Dem     Ind     Men     Wom     Evnglcl
 
Right thing             31%     68%      9%     29%     37%     26%     46%
Wrong thing             62      25      88      62      57      67      47
DK/NA                    6       7       3       9       5       7       7
 
                        Cntrl   NrthE   NrthW   SthE    SthW    WstCnt
 
Right thing             30%     25%     32%     24%     48%     39%
Wrong thing             65      66      62      68      49      57
DK/NA                    5       8       5       8       3       4
 
TREND: Do you think going to war with Iraq was the right thing for the United States to do or the wrong thing?
                        Feb 25  Mar 22  Jan 30
                        2008    2007    2007
 
Right thing             31      34      37
Wrong thing             62      60      56
DK/NA                    6       6       6