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Daily Blog Buzz: Pre-PA Coverage

10:17 AM, Apr 22, 2008 • By SAMANTHA SAULT
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Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are facing a difficult primary in Pennsylvania today, and bloggers are sizing up each candidate's chances.

Hillary is doing well in PA. Yesterday Marc Ambinder said that Hillary's campaign has "a fierce urgency of the now." The Fix's Chris Cillizza noted that "polling conducted in the runup to a series of states that voted earlier in the year seems to suggest that surveys underestimate support for the New York Senator. Polls in California and Ohio in advance of those states' votes showed Clinton and Obama running neck and neck, but she claimed solid margins in each. Her campaign has to hope the same pattern holds true in Pennsylvania tomorrow." If the numerous polls reported by the Real Clear Politics blog are any indication, Hillary has a shot at winning by as much as 10 points.

Another big polling buzz yesterday was a Drudge report of an internal Clinton campaign poll that predicted an 11-point win. Although the Clinton campaign denied the existence of this poll, Dave at the Political Machine pointed out that "the perception is more important than the actual numbers. Appearing to be ascendant is more important than the difference between nine points and 11 points." But Hot Air's Allahpundit said the report could actually hurt her: "All it does is make it easy for the media to frame a close win as a de facto loss while giving those late deciders she's banking on an excuse to stay home or toss a sympathy vote at Obama to keep him from getting blown out."

Still, most bloggers see Hillary coming out on top. Hot Air's Ed Morrissey predicted: "Hillary wins Pennsylvania by eight. I suspect that Obama's support in Philadelphia will keep him competitive, but the twin blows of Crackerquiddick and his awful debate performance will have convinced Pennsylvanians that Obama needs more experience--a lot more experience." Slate's Christopher Beam agreed: "Conventional wisdom suggests that Clinton needs to win by about 10 points in Pennsylvania in order to stay in the race. Her campaign puts the number around one point. What this means, of course, is that Clinton will win by eight points--just high enough for her to stick around, just low enough for Obama supporters to claim she's done."

Even Barack Obama himself said, "I'm not predicting a win. I'm predicting it's going to be close and that we are going to do a lot better than people expect," Politico's Ben Smith reported.

With such a close race and so many different polls, Democrats in PA may feel like each vote really counts this primary. So it's really a shame that, as Michelle Malkin says, the choice boils down to, "Will it be the snob or the liar?"