Obama: damaged goods?

The speech doesn’t appear to have done enough for Barack Obama. The Times today carries a report that says he has has been significantly damaged by the controversy over his pastor’s inflammatory 9/11 remarks and the issue could sink him.

The paper says that a survey released yesterday point to an erosion of support for Obama among independents, which is a bloc that he has previously owned, and particular alienation among white, working-class voters who are turning back to Hillary Clinton.

If they are looking at the Reverend Wright speak it is not surprising. His comments are dynamite. He refers to the US as the US of KKK among other things. The questions of Obama’s proximity to this man over such a long period of time are not going to disappear.

A Gallup tracking poll has Hillary Clinton regaining her lead over Obama for the first time in a month. She now leading 49% to 42%, a 13-point shift to the former First Lady in less than a fortnight.

Better news still for Clinton, she holds a 16-point lead over Obama in Pennsylvania, which is the next contest on April 22.

Worse for Obama he has lost his strong lead among independent voters to John McCain, the Republican nominee, in a new CBS poll.

The survey shows McCain, who was in London yesterday meeting with Gordon Brown, and the Tory guy, leading both Democrats, which will ring further alarm bells for Democractic Party bosses who fear a long drawn out battle.