“Although there has been a great deal of discussion of the problems that await Obama among white men should he win the Democratic nomination, this analysis suggests that while McCain certainly has a strength among this group, it is no more of a strength against Obama than it would be against Clinton. Clinton’s slight advantage among blue-collar white men is offset by Obama’s advantage among white-collar white men.
The bigger issue appears to be Obama’s problems among white women, when compared to how Clinton would perform among this group. Obama loses to McCain by nine points among white women, while Clinton wins by three points. Clinton does better than Obama among both blue-collar and white-collar white women.
All in all, although both Democrats are to a degree handicapped against McCain among white voters, Clinton would perform better than Obama in a general-election matchup among non-Hispanic whites. Combining white voters of both genders, the current analysis shows that McCain wins over Obama among whites, 53% to 38%, and beats Clinton by a considerably smaller 51% to 42% margin.
It is important to note that Obama runs about as well vs. McCain as Clinton does, and both Democrats currently maintain a slight advantage over McCain in general-election trial heats. So any weaker relative performance for Obama vs. McCain among a demographic group (such as white women or lower-educated voters) is made up for by a stronger relative performance among another group (such as blacks or higher-educated voters).”
— Gallup, today