28 Apr

Hillary’s Pennsylvania win and exit polls

Hillary won Pennsylvania last week by nearly 10 points and with a record 2.3 million Democratic voter turnout. While it was enough to come within striking distance on the national popular vote totals, it brought just a 10 delegate bump and renewed speculation about how the Democratic nominee will be chosen.

Exit polling from Pennsylvania does nothing to change concern for how many Hillary or Obama supporters will back McCain in November. From the CNN Political Ticker blog:

Only 50 percent of Clinton voters in Pennsylvania said they would support Obama if he is the nominee. Twenty-six percent said they would back McCain over Obama, and 19 percent said they would not vote at all.

Among Obama’s Pennsylvania voters, 67 percent said they would support Clinton if she is the party’s nomine. Seventeen percent said they would back McCain instead, and 12 percent said they would stay home.”

And at Politico:

Exit polls revealed another reason for Democrats to worry: They suggested that Obama would only hold the support of 72 percent of the core Democratic voters who participated in the Pennsylvania primary. Clinton, the poll suggested, would hold just 80 percent.

I first touched on this issue back in early March. There is a very real risk of not just discouraging Democratic turnout in November, but of alienating the most passionate voters we have this year. By stressing a combined Democratic ticket, we can focus on our shared values and keep as many Democrats as possible involved in the general election.