The latest Rasmussen Reports 2008 Democratic primary poll update released today finds that little has changed in this race. Even though the Democratic candidates will be debating again tonight, it seems that the previous debates have had little impact on this race. This week’s poll finds Sen. Hillary Clinton once again with 38% of the support. Sen. Barack Obama is still second with 25%, and John Edwards gained a point from last week, and is now up to 14%. I am sure that the Edwards campaign was expecting a much better result from their One America poverty tour last week than a 1% gain. This week marks the seventh consecutive poll where Clinton has had 37%-39% support. She has been at 38% in each of the last three polls.

For the Obama campaign, the frustration continues. This week’s is the tenth consecutive poll that Obama has had support between 25%-27%. Edwards is in a slump that is almost as severe as Obama’s. This poll is the ninth one in a row where his support ranges between 13%-16%. An encouraging sign for Obama is that he has the highest percentage of voters who would definitely vote for him, if was the nominee. A separate Rasmussen survey released today found that 29% of those asked would definitely vote for him. Hillary Clinton was second with 28%, and Fred Thompson was third with 25%. Interestingly only 37% of those surveyed said they would definitely vote against Obama, while Sen. Clinton registered the highest percentage of definite support against her (46%). Fifty two percent of men said that they would definitely vote against her, and 42% of women felt the same way.

Although Sen. Clinton’s approval rating remains at 84% among Democrats, in the nation at large she is not a popular figure. The good news for her Democratic opponents is that it seems like only political junkies are following the polls and watching the debates right now. Much of Obama’s appeal should be with casual voters. Even though the Democratic polls have remained stable for months now, once these peoples start paying attention things may change quickly.

Sen. Obama has the personality, grassroots support, and funds needed to make a serious run at Clinton. What he must do is perform better in the debates and refine his message. For Edwards and the other Democratic candidates, it is looking like the only way they are going to gain momentum is to win or at least have a good showing in the early voting states. If Obama falters early, this will be Clinton’s nomination to lose.

Note: I’ll be doing a special Democratic debate “pregame show” that you can listen to live at 6:30 PM (ET) at

Rasmussen Reports Democratic update

Rasmussen Reports core support poll 

Jason Easley is the editor of the politics zone at  His news column The Political Universe appears on Tuesdays and Fridays at

Jason can also be heard every Sunday at 7:00 pm (ET) as the host of The Political Universe Radio Show at

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