PRINCETON, NJ -- Barack Obama holds a 5-percentage point advantage over Hillary Clinton in national Democratic voters' nomination preferences, at 49% to 44%.
Obama's current margin, based on Gallup Poll Daily tracking interviews conducted April 1-3, is a slight improvement over the 3-point edge he held in the prior two releases.
Obama has held at least a slight edge over Clinton since Mar. 19-21 polling, once the Rev. Jeremiah Wright controversy began to die down. Obama trailed Clinton throughout January and did not inch ahead of her until Feb. 10-12 polling, just after the Super Tuesday primaries and caucuses. Since that time, the typical pattern has been for Obama to hold a slight edge over Clinton. However, he has yet to open up and maintain a consistently large lead over Clinton.
Registered voters' preferences in the general election are the same regardless of whether the matchup is between John McCain and Obama (46% McCain to 45% Obama) or McCain and Clinton (46% McCain to 45% Clinton). Both trial heats have shown a close race since the tracking program began on March 7, though McCain has held a slight edge or been tied with the Democrats in all but the first two releases. -- Jeff Jones
Gallup is interviewing no fewer than 1,000 U.S. adults nationwide each day during 2008.
The general election results are based on combined data from March 30-April 3, 2008. For results based on this sample of 4,433 registered voters, the maximum margin of sampling error is ±2 percentage points.
The Democratic nomination results are based on combined data from April 1-3, 2008. For results based on this sample of 1,219 Democratic and Democratic-leaning voters, the maximum margin of sampling error is ±3 percentage points.
In addition to sampling error, question wording and practical difficulties in conducting surveys can introduce error or bias into the findings of public opinion polls.