Obama Stronger Rival Against McCain: Poll

More independents would back Barack than Hillary in McCain match
By Jane Yager,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 8, 2008 5:02 AM CST
Dustin Olde, left, holds up a precinct sign in favor of Democratic presidential hopeful Barack Obama while Cindy Graham looks over items while holding a sign for Hillary Rodham Clinton as they wait to...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Democratic presidential contender Barack Obama would have a better chance than Hillary Clinton of beating John McCain in a general election, according to a new Time magazine poll. Obama outdid McCain 48% to 41% in a theoretical match-up, while Clinton and McCain tied at 46% each. Pollsters chalk up the difference to independents, who prefer Obama to McCain, but prefer McCain to Clinton.

The new numbers show a shift, as Dem candidates until recently held strong margins against all Republicans. Obama's advantage does not hold among Democratic voters, who favor Clinton over Obama for the nomination 48% to 42% in the same poll. The poll also found that more Clinton supporters would like her to name Obama as her running mate than vice versa.