The California Field Poll
I guess it's worth looking at the California Field Poll on the Presidential primary, as it will likely be the last before the February 5 election. Clinton gets 39%, Obama 27%, Edwards 10%, with 20% undecided and a margin of error of 5%. This appears to track with national polls, once again, since we're still getting a mostly national campaign out here. Clinton's vote-by-mail lead is only 5 points - I would have expected much higher. So Obama still has a chance in California, but he'll need to do better among women and Latinos than he did in Nevada.
Obama is doing worse among 18-29 year-olds in the poll, so I don't think it's fully captured the electorate.
Dan Walters thinks it's over in California. I think what this shows is that Obama will pick up a significant amount of delegates, enough to keep him afloat. As Frank Russo notes:
The statewide winner has bragging rights and should get the most delegates, but the bulk of the action here takes place locally in each of our state’s 53 Congressional Districts. A full 241 of California’s 441 delegates are elected based on the share of the vote the candidates for President receive in these districts for candidates with over 15% of the vote. Both of the two leading candidates will surely be competitive in all or virtually all of these districts. Only 81 delegates are elected “at-large” and go to the winner of the statewide vote.
Obama is likely to win South Carolina, as evidenced by Clinton limiting her time there. If she picks up some delegates thanks to dirty push-polling and the like, so be it (but it's unlikely, because there are crap robocalls on both sides), but it's very likely that Obama will have the lead in delegates through voter preferences going into February 5. And as poblano noted last week, the delegate split from Super Duper Tuesday may be no more than 50 or so between the two candidates. Edwards' strong showing in the debate yesterday may have put him back in the race for delegates, too, getting us closer to the 40-40-20 split that offers him the best chance to play kingmaker. It's very interesting that Clinton and Edwards had a secret post-debate meeting last night.
Point being, the overall race is still fluid, though Clinton is favored.