by Steven Ertelt
February 24, 2008
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — The direction of the Democratic race for president is expected to change greatly on Tuesday when voters in Ohio and Texas head to the polls. New surveys there show Hillary Clinton hanging on to a narrow lead in Ohio while Barack Obama has almost caught up to her in Texas.
To remain competitive, Clinton needs wins in both states so she can close the gap on Obama, who has surged to a lead in the overall delegate race.
In Ohio, Clinton had a double digit lead that Obama narrowed to single digits at the beginning of last week. Newer surveys show she continues to lead there.
A Rasmussen poll released on Friday showed Clinton ahead of Obama by a 48 to 40 percentage point margin. An ABC/Washington Post poll released on the same day had her leading 50 to 43 percent.
Obama has caught up to Clinton in Texas and now trails her within the margin of error.
The ABC/Post poll has Clinton ahead by just one point — 47 to 44 percent — while the Rasmussen survey has her leading 47 to 44 percent.
Meanwhile, national tracking polls of Democrats find Obama ahead for the first time in recent days.
Among Democrats nationally in the three most recent polls, Gallup shows Obama leading 47 to 46 percent, Rasmussen has him ahead 46 to 41 percent, while Fox News has the candidates tied at 44 percent.
McCain has large double digit leads in both states over Mike Huckabee, the pro-life former Arkansas governor who plans to campaign until McCain officially captures the Republican nomination.
State polls also show Obama continues to fare better against likely Republican nominee John McCain.
In Iowa, a Selzer and Company poll shows McCain leading Clinton nine percent, 49-40, while he trails Obama by 17 percent, 53-46. Survey USA shows McCain leading Clinton by eight percent in Oregon, 49-41, but losing to Obama by one point, 48-47.
Surveys last week show the same phenomenon in Virginia, New York, Kansas and New Jersey.