A new Pew Hispanic Center survey finds the presumptive Democratic nominee now has a strong lead among Hispanics, a sharp reversal from the primaries when Obama lost the Latino vote to Hillary Clinton by a nearly two-to-one ratio.
Even with a partisan enthusiasm gap, voter interest is already as high as in November of recent elections, two trends that may significantly alter the composition of the eventual electorate in the Democrats' favor. The proportion of swing voters is also up compared with four years ago. Nearly half of independents (47%) are undecided or may change their minds, up from 28% in June 2004.
While opinion of the Republican Party (39% favorable) remains at a historic low, favorable views of the Democratic Party have risen to 57%. Attitudes toward the Democratic-led Congress, however, remain very negative.
While Barack Obama's appeal to the young coincides with their increasing Democratic alignment, older voters do not show the greater allegiance to the GOP that might explain their relative reluctance to support him.
Trends in the opinions of America's youngest voters are often a barometer of shifting political winds. And that appears to be the case in 2008. Use the interactive tool to track generational differences in party affiliation over time.
The balance of party identification in the U.S. electorate now favors the Democratic Party by a decidedly larger margin than in either of the two previous presidential election cycles including in some key swing states.
As the Democratic nomination contest heads for a showdown in Texas on March 4, Latinos may be a pivotal constituency in a state where they make up a quarter of the electorate.
Beyond the vote, the exit polls point to interesting differences -- and similarities -- between younger and older Democratic voters.
Earlier Republican Party gains among Latinos have dissipated in the past year, a new Pew Hispanic Center survey finds. Hispanics also comprise a sizable share of voters in four "swing states" that President Bush narrowly carried in 2004.
A year before the 2008 presidential election, most major national opinion trends decidedly favor the Democrats and discontent with the state of the nation is markedly greater than it was four years ago. Also, Republicans have become less likely to say that their party is doing a good job standing up for its traditional positions.