Beliefnet
God-O-Meter

obama38.jpgUnder the headline Obama Catholic Outreach Failing, God-o-Meter asserted yesterday that, for all his impressive efforts, Barack Obama had nothing to show for his Catholic outreach, given that a Sunday poll put Clinton ahead of Obama among Pennsylvania Catholics by 63-percent to 30-percent.
But a Barack Obama supporter contacted God-o-Meter to argue that there was evidence of Obama improving among Keystone State Catholics: a Quinnipiac Poll released yesterday found that Hillary was leading among white Pennsylvania Catholics 66 to 29 percent, an improvement over a Quinnipiac poll from mid-March, which showed Clinton with a 72 to 22 percent lead among the same voters. Quinnipiac didn’t formally release those numbers from the March poll, but they were mentioned in an Associated Press story at the time. God-o-Meter contacted Quinnipiac today and Manager of Data Analysis Pankaj Prakash confirmed those numbers.
Prakash also pointed out that the March poll had a margin of error of +/- 4.6%, while yesterday’s poll had a margin of error of +/- 5.1%, which means that Obama’s apparent progress among white Catholics could be a mirage.
An Obama advisor argued that, taken together with other polls, the Quinnipiac numbers painted a more hopeful picture for Obama among Catholics than God-o-Meter has given him credit for. “Senator Obama has been gaining among Catholics, and our robust outreach efforts are laying the groundwork to go toe-to-toe with John McCain in the fall,” the advisor, who requested anonymity, said. “In fact, a recent poll showed Senator Obama virtually tied with Senator Clinton in terms of the Catholic vote in the General election.”
God-o-Meter admits that saying Obama’s Catholic outreach is failing was going too far. There’s not definite evidence of that. But given the caveats on the Quinnipiac numbers, it would also be premature to say that Obama’s Catholic outreach is succeeding. God-o-Meter will keep following the polls for evidence of either trend.


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