The Los Angeles Times was apparently victimized by a leak on Friday that became the talk of the state Democratic convention. At a few minutes until midnight London time, the Financial Times of London published on its Web site the results of an L.A. Times poll scheduled to be released on Saturday. Problem is, midnight London time is 4 p.m. on the West Coast, meaning that the Times got scooped on its own exclusive poll.
But what was embarrassing for Times must have been dispiriting for Phil Angelides, who is hoping for some momentum coming out of the convention of party loyalists who in the main back him over opponent Steve Westly in the Democratic primary for governor.
The horse-race poll in the Times became the third in 10 days to show Westly with a lead over Angelides. This one pegged the margin at 13 percent. The Field Poll put it at 11 percent, and the Public Policy Institute of California scored it at 6 percent. Perhaps more damaging for Angelides, however, is that the Times poll showed Westly leading Republican Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger by 9 percentage points in a trial heat. It showed Angelides and Schwarzenegger in a tie.
Today convention delegates will vote whether to endorse Angelides. It will take a 60 percent majority to make that decision. To the extent the Westly camp is arguing that delegates should restrain themselves on the endorsement because their man is more electable, the new numbers could prove to be very untimely for Angelides.