Political Capital with John Harwood

Clinton Poll Numbers (Including Ours) Show Slide Continues


It's clear from our non-scientific survey (click here for blog post and poll) that you readers, do not believe the MSNBC debate in Cleveland on Tuesday did much to help Hillary Clinton reverse her slide in the race against Barack Obama for the Democratic nomination.

Fifty-one percent of you said Obama won the debate, while another 33 percent called the 90-minute session a tie that didn't help her.

I am at this moment on a conference call that represents the Clinton campaign's attempt to push back against the gathering perception that her cause is lost:

Fund-raising director Jonathan Mantz said the campaign raised a record $35-million in February, more than double her January total.

Campaign manager Maggie Williams said that press reports of sagging morale are wrong.

Chief tracker Harold Ickes called the delegate race "tight as a tick" and noted that neither Obama nor Clinton can win without backing from so-called "super-delegates."

Campaign chair Terry McAuliffe pushed back against the idea that Clinton would exit the race soon, noting that "we're just starting" and that "Hillary Clinton's not going anywhere." Then he corrected himself, "She's going to one place--to Denver as the Democratic nominee."

Their challenge is turning that optimism into March 4 results in Texas, where polls show she now trails, and Ohio, where her lead is dwindling.

Questions?  Comments?  Write to politicalcapital@cnbc.com.