A new Suffolk University survey released today has found that Hillary Clinton has opened up a six point lead on Barack Obama in the state. Clinton now leads Obama 49%-43%, with 6% undecided and 2% refusing to respond.
The strongest evidence yet that Republicans are crossing over to mess with the Democratic primary was revealed when 38% of those surveyed said that if their candidate doesn’t win the Democratic nomination, they plan to vote for John McCain in the fall. This was a poll of those who were likely to vote in the Democratic primary tomorrow including Democrats, Republicans, and Independents.
Only 44% of those surveyed in this poll said that if their candidate lost, they vote Democratic. Besides the 38% for McCain, 6% supported Ralph Nader and 11% were undecided. Another odd number for a Democratic poll was that 48% of those surveyed favored making the Bush tax cuts permanent. A more normal result is that 70% of those surveyed did not want to raise taxes to pay off the budget deficit. Voters will hardly ever support a tax increase for anything.
Like in other states, the economy is the number one issue in Indiana (54%), followed by the Iraq war (21%), and healthcare (12%). When asked who would be the next president, 35% said Obama, 28% said Clinton, and 23% said McCain.
The Indiana primary really is a dead heat, so even if a small number of Republicans, who have no intention of supporting her in the fall, crossover and vote Clinton tomorrow, this will be enough to tilt the state her way. There are two reasons why Republicans are crossing over and voting for Clinton. First, they know that their only chance of winning in the fall is if the Democratic Party tears itself apart. Second, Republicans want to run against Hillary. It is the easier matchup.
The Republicans are already thinking about November, so I think supporters of both campaigns need to put this endless bickering aside, and move ahead to beating John McCain in the fall. My guess is that the candidates are probably going to split both states on Tuesday. Neither one will get a blowout, so the delegates will also be shared, and this thing will continue to drag on for another month.