In 2008, North Carolina was the surprising bonus in Barack Obama’s landslide wave — with him having picked up the 15 electoral votes of a place that people would have been very surprised to hear about as a swing state just a few years earlier. Now, a new Public Policy Polling (D) survey suggests that it could again be crucial to Obama’s re-election strategy, with Obama still leading the Republican contenders.
The poll has Obama just edging out Mitt Romney by 45%-44%, leading Tim Pawlenty by 47%-40%, leading Herman Cain by 48%-37%, leading Newt Gingrich by 50%-40%, and leading Sarah Palin Palin by 52%-38%. Obama’s approval rating in North Carolina is 49%, with a disapproval of 47%.
The survey of registered voters was conducted from June 8-11, and has a Â±4.1% margin of error.Obama carried the state in 2008, in a big shocker at the time, by a margin of just 0.32%, becoming the first Democratic presidential candidate to carry the state since Jimmy Carter was the South’s favorite son in 1976.
From the pollster’s analysis:
North Carolina is likely to be much more important to the Presidential race next year than it was in 2008. Obama’s approval numbers in North Carolina are superior to what we’re finding for him in your quintessential swing states like Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Florida. While North Carolina was one of the closest states in the country in 2008, it was really just the cherry on top for Obama in an electoral landslide. This time it could very well be part of the path to 270 electoral votes for the President.