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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Eye On Olympia

Brand-new Washington Poll results: Good news for Obama, very good news for Gregoire…

The University of Washington's Washington Poll has interesting new results out this morning in both the presidential and state gubernatorial races.

The researchers contacted 300 people, initially surveying them in October and then again this month to gauge if and how public opinion is shifting. (Stats: New survey from Feb. 7-18, margin of error +/- 5.6 percent)

The results suggest:

-That a race between John McCain and Hillary Clinton today would be neck and neck, with McCain favored by about 49 percent of respondents and Clinton by 45 percent, within the margin of error.

-That Barack Obama, on the other hand, would soundly defeat McCain here. Some 55 percent favored Obama to McCain's 40 percent.

-That Republicans are far more likely to cross over and vote for Obama than for Clinton. About 10 percent of those self-identified Republicans said they'd vote for Obama. Not one planned to vote for Clinton. (Among Democrats, 7 percent to 8 percent said they'd vote for McCain.)

But the most interesting news is in Washington's gubernatorial matchup this year. Between October 2007 and February 2008, it suggests:

Support for Democratic Gov. Chris Gregoire rose from 47 percent to 54 percent, while support for Republican Dino Rossi held steady at 42 percent. The number of undecided voters has dropped to less than 4 percent, the poll indicated.

While Rossi's percentage among Democrats, Republicans and Independents was largely unchanged, Gregoire's support increased among Democrats (from 85 percent supporting her in October to 92 percent now) and especially among independents (43 percent in October to 56 percent now).

Here's a link to a Powerpoint presentation summarizing these and other poll results.

Short takes and breaking news from the Washington Legislature and the state capital.