Obama has smaller lead in California; voters pessimistic [Talkback]
President Obama is way ahead in California, according to the latest USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll.
But he's not likely to win the state by the same margin he did in 2008.
Times political writer Seema Mehta reported:
Despite his sizable lead over Mitt Romney, the president is unlikely to repeat his historic 2008 margin of victory here because of his diminished power to pull in people who don't traditionally support Democrats, according to the USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll.
The drop in appeal across party and demographic lines has translated, at this point, to a 14-point edge over the Republican nominee among likely voters — well below Obama's 24-point victory in 2008, the biggest margin in modern times.
The poll also found voter pessimism in California:
The poll found that 51% of Californians believe that the nation is moving in the wrong direction, not surprising in a state where unemployment continues to be higher than the national average and the state is mired in budget woes, facing either tax hikes or biting cuts to schools and public services. But that was an improvement over a 2011 poll that showed nearly 3 out of 4 held the same sentiment.
The fact that the president is doing well here despite qualms about the direction of the nation reflects Democrats' strength in California, where not a single Republican was elected to statewide office in 2010. Obama maintains strong support among key Democratic constituencies. He leads Romney among likely Latino voters by 52 percentage points, and among likely female voters by 26 points — numbers roughly consistent with his performance against McCain.
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Photo: President Obama steps off Air Force One on a recent visit to Los Angeles. Credit: Mandel Ngan / AFP/Getty Images