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Women, blacks beat smokers, Mormons in U.S. race: poll

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By Peter Szekely

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Being female or black is less of a liability for U.S. presidential candidates than being over 72, Mormon, twice-divorced or a cigarette smoker, according to an ABC News/Washington Post poll issued on Tuesday.

With the 2008 presidential race featuring perhaps the most diverse field of White House contenders ever, the poll showed being a woman or an African American carries the least amount of negative baggage.

The poll, which isolated attributes of some candidates but did not ask about any, may be good for Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, the only woman running, bad for Sen. John McCain, who turns 72 in August 2008 and mixed for Sen. Barack Obama, the only black candidate and a smoker who says he's quit.

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What's wrong with being a Mormon or a smoker? Hmmmm... Just asking...


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