February 3rd, 2008
12:20 PM ET
13 years ago

Poll suggests Obama, Clinton in dead heat in California

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i.l.cnn.net/cnn/2008/images/02/03/art.cali.ap.jpg caption=" Clinton and Obama are tied in California, a new poll shows."]

(CNN) - A new poll out Sunday suggests Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are locked in a dead heat for the biggest prize on Super Tuesday: delegate-rich California.

According to a just released poll from the Field Research Corporation, Clinton only holds a statistically insignificant 2 point lead over Obama in California, 36 percent to 34 percent. Meanwhile the poll shows 18 percent of California Democrats have yet to make up their minds.

The poll suggests the race has significantly narrowed in the state in only a matter weeks– most polls two weeks ago showed Clinton with a double-digit lead there. A CNN/Opinion Research Corporation poll taken a week ago showed Clinton with a 17 point lead in California. John Edwards, then still a presidential candidate, registered 11 percent.

If the eventual outcome of the race is as close as the poll suggests, both candidates stand to rack up significant numbers of delegates in the state: On the Democratic side, California awards its 370 delegates proportionately.

The poll shows the race on the Republican side isn't as close - John McCain holds a 32-24 percent lead over Romney with Mike Huckabee at 13 percent. Ron Paul pulls 10 percent of support among likely Republican voters.

California is worth 170 delegates for the Republicans and unlike the Democrats, the winner of the state's primary will be awarded them all.

The poll, conducted January 25-Febuary 1, surveyed 481 likely Republican primary voters and 511 likely Democratic voters and carries a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percentage points.

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- CNN Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: California • Presidential Candidates
soundoff (291 Responses)
  1. Hmmmm.

    Well, if 18% of Dems have yet to make up their minds, and there is a margin of error of about 5%, this poll is rubish. It is another attempt to put out a favorable spin for Obama. Jeez.

    February 3, 2008 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  2. Mary

    Go Obama!

    Go Obama!

    Go Obama!

    February 3, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  3. Mary

    Go Obama!

    February 3, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  4. Lk2theFuture

    As for the dream ticket question:

    Clinton may NEED to have Obama on her ticket to win the election.

    However, Obama DOES NOT need Clinton on his ticket.

    Obama for President!

    February 3, 2008 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  5. Larry, Philadelphia

    Those who stand in the way of the future are doomed to be left behind in it.

    Obama '08

    February 3, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  6. Abdul Jabbar

    One day, Barack Obama will rule the world. That is the destiny. It can't be stopped.

    February 3, 2008 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  7. Independent

    Ohhhh baby Clinton in trouble

    February 3, 2008 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  8. Craig in Palm Springs

    Remember New Hampshire? My opinion is that Hillary will clean up on Tuesday & go on to easily beat McCain in November. Hillary's biggest obstacle is the Washington media who hates the Clintons as they repeatedly distort & twist facts to favor Obama and continually say that the gap between Clinton & Obama in the polls is narrow when it really is not that narrow. The media wants Obama to win as they know that in the general election he will not win. You see the media is obeying the directives from GE and others in control to do their best to get another Republican in the White House in order to keep defense spending, etc. up.

    February 3, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  9. Vinn V

    Will Obama derail Clintons hopes (again) in California?

    Hillary tried the old school politics with Bill against Obama- only to put a reconciliatory mask in the last debate. My impression is that voters will see through it and judge Hillary (and Bill) for what they really areā€¦

    February 3, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  10. Paul

    A margin of error of 4.5%????

    Come on, don't report this...

    February 3, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  11. VoterMom, Iowa CIty

    Polls can be informative, but when will pollsters ask Democrats whether they intend to vote for HRC if she is the nominee? The answer to that question is, increasingly, "NO".

    February 3, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  12. GaryO

    Obama's recent gains are impressive.

    And I am sure Obama's gain in the polls is the cumulative effect of journalistic distortions.

    . . . just as planned, no doubt.

    February 3, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  13. He's Mormon So what?

    Obama is coming on strong, Hillary lost her shine.

    Romney is coming on strong, he's Mormon so what

    February 3, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  14. kent

    Hilary hopes are dead.
    Barack is heating up.

    February 3, 2008 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  15. Jabari Woods

    Everyday I run into people who believe Hillary is promising free health care for all Americans. "Universal healthcare" sounds pretty but the ugly truth is the health insurance promised is not free. Isn't she being intentionally deceptive by claiming that the "mandate" makes her plan "universal?" Hillary's plan makes it mandatory for 15 million people to buy health insurance that they can not afford. Without a guarantee of "universal" coverage – once again: she's not leveling with the voting public. On the one issue that is supposed to represent the soul of her poltical will and capability, a real willingless to level with the public is missing.

    Shame. Turn the page.

    February 3, 2008 11:56 am at 11:56 am |
  16. Jake, California

    Yes We Can!

    I am going to give a lot of money to the poor and homeless people here in San Francisco if Obama wins California...

    "They said this day would never come!"
    "We have just done what the cynics said we couldn't do"
    "They said our eyes were set too far"

    But mine oh mine....Yes we can!

    February 3, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  17. Hillary Fan in California

    A poll of 511 democrats tells the whole story?? Come on!

    February 3, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  18. Mike

    The GOP California primary isn't statewide winner-take-all, it's congressional-district winner-take-all (3 delegates/district: 159 delegates of the 170!) + the 11 statewide delegates go to the statewide winner. McCain will probably get 100+ delegates out of CA (My gut says about 120-130), but certainly not all 170.

    February 3, 2008 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  19. Tom Wittmann

    This poll, if accurate, considering that since Friday, as:

    – The LATimes and Ethel Kennedy,endorsed Obama throwing Robert's memory in

    – Ted and Carolyn will campaign there (and even Oprah !!!?)

    – There is no reason to believe that the momentum of Obama, which improved
    his position by 15% points in only one week, as stopped

    – That evidently part of these 15% come from a most lopsided support by the now
    freed 11% Edwards intended votes (which makes an Endorsement of Hillary by
    Edwards nearly impossible and one probable) Obama should win by a marge of

    Of course, all this is not a sure thing


    February 3, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  20. Amar Kumar

    There is a mistake in this story. As I understand it, the California Republican primary delegates are awarded on the basis of congressional districts that are won. Three delegates are awarded for each district won; plus eleven delegates are awarded for the overall winner.

    February 3, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  21. nick

    zogby had obama 45, clinton 41 in ca from 1/31-2/2

    February 3, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  22. Miss H

    That's what I like to hear.

    Obama '08 – Join the movement

    February 3, 2008 12:07 pm at 12:07 pm |
  23. Eric

    A measure of the power of inspiration. Let's not forget that JFK was seen as an inexperienced nobody when he ran, against the wishes of the Democratic establishment. But, his words still galvanize us today. Our nation desperately needs someone who can inspire and unite us. I think Obama is that person – consider a crowd of 15,000 in Republican Idaho, where Clinton can't get more that 5,000 to show for a rally in LA.

    Remember, one great phrase – "ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country" – has moved us to accomplish a thousand times more as a people than all the Clintonian incrementalism combined.

    February 3, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  24. Allen

    It is time for Senator Barack Obama. We need to unite this country, we can no longer have a 51% majority. Hillary will only further polarize this country. We need to vote smart right now. Our country needs every vote for Obama.

    February 3, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  25. Jim in the Boonies

    What has been lost on many of the vocal supporters, especially the Clintonites who always trumpeted their candidates lead in the Super-Tuesday states, is that delegates are awarded proportionately in every state on the Dem side. Hillary could win every state by 5 points (she won't), and still not have but the smallest of delegate margins, with plenty of contests yet to go, and momentum on Obama's side. We have a horserace, and the leader is faltering as they head out of the final turn. The stretch is yet to come. Obama is the better candidate.

    February 3, 2008 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
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