PRINCETON, N.J. - Democratic voters are divided on the role superdelegates should play in determining the party's presidential nominee, a poll indicates.
A Gallup poll found that if neither Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York nor Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois has the 2,025 delegates needed to clinch the party's nomination, 50 percent of respondents said the party's superdelegates should side with the delegate count.
On the other side, 45 percent of respondent said superdelegates -- party insiders and elected officials -- should vote their consciences.
"In one sense, the split over how superdelegates should vote is not surprising given that Democrats have been fairly evenly divided in their preferences between Clinton and Obama as the party's nominee for most of this year," Gallup said in its analysis.
"Many Democrats are apparently tuned in to the issues and understand the implications of one outcome or another for each candidate, and thus tend to favor an approach that works in their preferred candidate's best interests," Gallup said.
The poll of 528 Democrats and independent-leaning Democrats was conducted March 6-9. The margin of error is plus or minus five percentage points.
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