Bob Barr as ’08 spoiler?
Item by Chris Graham
A Zogby Interactive poll of 46,274 likely voters has Democrat Barack Obama ahead of Republican John McCain by six percentage points, with Libertarian candidate Bob Barr playing the role of spoiler.
Barr, a former Republican congressman, picked up 6 percent support in the Zogby poll, an online survey conducted from June 11-30.
“Bob Barr could really hurt McCain’s chances,” pollster John Zogby said. “McCain can’t afford the level of slippage to Barr we found among conservatives in this polling. While there has been plenty of talk about Obama’s recent emphasis on his centrist positions, he can get away with it during these dog days of the campaign as McCain finds himself still trying to shore up the conservative base. McCain will have to move to the center, because right now Obama is clobbering him among independents. But there is the rub for McCain: Bob Barr has some juice among conservatives and is hurting him in several states. ”
The Zogby data also has Obama significantly ahead in the Electoral College count – with Obama holding leads in states that would give him 273 Electoral College votes, or three more than he would need to be elected president. McCain holds leads in states that would give him 160 electoral votes. States that are considered tossups have 105 combined Electoral College votes.
“Obama is in the driver’s seat right now, especially where it really counts – in the electoral votes,” Zogby said.