Today’s polling numbers:
Obama 48, McCain 47
Obama 45, McCain 44
Research 2000/Daily Kos
Obama 50, McCain 42
Now, as you all know, the national tracking polls are pretty much a popularity contest- obviously, we’re in a race for 270 electoral votes- the same as it was when McCain was leading nationally. But it’s an encouraging sign, nonetheless. Couple that with interesting trendlines from Rasmussen’s crosstabs, like that 55% polled say Obama will increase government spending… but 55% also say McCain will do the same thing (so much for the dream of small government, eh?). Or how 60% disagree with McCain’s assessment of economy as “fundamentally sound”, and see corporate America as more to blame than either President Bush or the Congress.
The poll I take the most stock in is the Rasmussen poll. While the Gallup and Research 2000 polls are encouraging, the Research 2000 poll is, of course, commissioned by DailyKos. There’s been no evidence it’s inherently biased, since it’s run by a third-party company (and it would truly be a detriment to Kos if it were biased), but an eight point spread is pretty aggressive.
Rasmussen, on the other hand, by Kos’ own admission was one of the best pollsters of the 2006 cycle, and it has a working relationship with Fox News. Moreover, about a week ago, they changed their poll weighting a few percentage points to favor the GOP. There was debate over whether or not that was an accurate reflection, but even given that, Obama is leading McCain… and it damn near (by Rasmussen’s own admission) the magic 50% threshold.
I think that McCain needed to be able to keep his covention/Palin bounce until the first debate, at least. Now, it’ll be much harder for him to regain this ground.
We’ll be back later with a look at this cycle’s battleground/tipping point states, as well as a look at the breathless “OH MY GOD, IT’S THE BRADLEY EFFECT” articles suddenly being churned out by the right-wing press.