The Catholic vote, looking toward the general

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The latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll has Obama leading McCain among Catholics by 47 percent to 40 percent, almost exactly the same figure as the 47-41 percent lead he enjoys among the entire sample. Inasmuch as Obama is leading McCain among Hispanics 62-28, however, that means he has his work cut out for him when it comes to white Catholics. Using the Henry Institutes’s numbers, Latino Catholics now weigh in at 30 percent of the Catholic voting public, and Latino Catholics are considerably more likely to vote Democratic than Latino Protestants–which means that more than 62 percent of the former are supporting Obama. My rough estimate is that McCain is ahead among white Catholics by 10-15 percentage points–say 48-35–with the rest undecided. By the same token, Obama’s “Hispanic problem” seems to be a figment of the primary season.