Interesting result from a recent survey conducted by the Pew Research Center for the People and the Press: If their favored candidate is not the Democratic nominee, a quarter of Hillary Clinton‘s primary supporters would defect and vote for John McCain in November, while only 10 percent of Barack Obama‘s supporters would do the same.
It’s funny to read this after all the blustering that Obama voters were disloyal Democrats who would bolt the party if Clinton were the nominee. As I recall, Dean supporters were accused of the same such rubbish four years ago and ended up becoming some of Kerry’s most fierce and active supporters.
What I suspect the polling indicates is sour grapes more than anything. Hillary is behind now, and many of her supporters are bitter about it, so they’re saying there’s no way that they will vote for Obama if he’s the nominee. In a few months when the emotions are calmer, and if Obama is the nominee, chances are the vast majority of that 25% will end up voting for Obama.
More from the Salon piece:
Here’s another interesting thing — the Clinton campaign is promoting this stat, both in an e-mail from spokesman Phil Singer and in an item on its “Delegate Hub” Web site.
Yes, the Clinton campaign is using that data as a reason that Democrats should support Hillary. The funny thing about that is that the Pew poll they cite has Obama beating McCain by a margin that is 2 points greater than Clinton’s margin over McCain.