Barack Obama looking good in four battlegrounds
Eagerly awaited polls from four key states will be welcomed by the Barack Obama camp today -- he leads in every case (though his edge over John McCain in Colorado is within the margin of error, barely).
Here are the results from the surveys conducted by the Quinnipiac University Polling Institute, in conjunction with washingtonpost.com and the Wall Street Journal:
Colorado (9 electoral votes): Obama 49%, McCain 44%
Michigan (17 electoral votes): Obama 48%, McCain 42%
Minnesota (10 electoral votes): Obama 54%, McCain 37%
Wisconsin (10 electoral votes): Obama 52%, McCain 39%
And here's an attention-grabbing quote from Peter A. Brown, the polling institute's assistant director: "November can't get here soon enough for Sen. Barack Obama. He has a lead everywhere, and if nothing changes between now and November he will make history."
But then Brown hedges his bet, adding that Obama "should not be picking out the drapes for the Oval Office just yet. His lead nationally, and double digits in some key states, is not hugely different from where Sen. John Kerry stood four years ago at this point" in his ultimately unsuccessful bid to unseat President Bush.
Kerry carried Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin, and Obama almost assuredly needs to hold them as part of assembling the 270 electoral votes needed to win the White House. Bush won Colorado; if Obama triumphs in all the states that went for Kerry, a win in Colorado would put him 10 electoral votes away from 270.
Perhaps the politician who will be most chagrined by the results is Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty. He is widely mentioned as a vice presidential prospect on McCain's ticket, but his stock will drop if, as the summer progresses, it continues to appear unlikely that his home state is in play.
-- Don Frederick