President Clinton’s lead over his likely November election opponent, Sen. Bob Dole, R-Kan., has been cut in half in the past week to 9 percentage points, the latest ABC News/ Washington Post poll shows.
Clinton led Dole 52 percent to 43 percent among registered voters in the poll, taken after last week’s Super Tuesday primaries and released Monday, compared with his 56 percent to 39 percent lead a week earlier.
However, the two were tied at 48 percent each when Clinton and Vice President Al Gore were pitted against Dole and retired Gen. Colin Powell, who has said he is not interested in running for vice president.
The poll of a random sample of 1,512 adults was conducted by telephone Thursday through Sunday and has a margin of error of 3 percentage points.
It found large majorities preferring Clinton’s approach on social issues, such as protecting the environment, helping the poor, educating American children, preserving Medicare and protecting Social Security.
Smaller pluralities said they would trust Dole to do a better job handling the nation’s economy, maintaining military strength, cutting taxes and reducing the federal deficit.
The two opponents tied in handling the crime problem and reforming welfare.