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Measuring the Bounce


Here's the link Convention Daily edition of my National Journal column for today, which covers the difficulty pollsters will have measuring the "bounce" that Barack Obama gets this week. The short version: There will be many polls this week but no way to measure the bump or bounce that is comparable to past years. So it's probably best to dispense with metaphysical comparisons to years past and just focus on what surveys tell us about what voters are learning and what conclusions they are coming to.

Incidentally, I will be writing two Conventional Daily columns for the National Journal this week (the second will appear on Wednesday morning), and two next week. In exchange for this contribution, I get to be on hand in Denver this week and in Minneapolis next week.

I've been traveling most of today and just got to our work space. Soon I'll be off to wander the hall, and seek out pollsters and their wisdom...

 

Comments
RS:

Nice column, Mark.

Thanks for the that quick diss (not that you meant it...? :-) ) of the Saturday night "flash" polls evaluating the Biden pick.

Since McCain's coronation is later, I suspect McCain might be better off (assuming people remember more recent events better). And comparing polls before and after these two weeks will take care of the four pivotal events - the VP picks and the conventions - in one fell swoop.

But you are right - it will be better to look at internals, and see if they change - from an Obama-backer's perspective, Obama as commander-in-chief, McCain as McBush/McSame, Obama's "values are same as me" rating, etc.

I look forward to the aggregated Gallup "key indicators", which I think provide a lot of insight particularly given the large sample sizes.

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thoughtful:

With the convention(s) being so late and back to back not to mention a Repub running mate announcement immediately after the Dems Convention really does make it a hard life for a pollster!

It gets even more interesting with a fairly large "undecided" swell in most polls and evidently churn potential within voters currently stating a voting intention.

I honestly believe, from my polling interpretation, and we will find out soon enough, that a significant amount of voters are unsure about Obama (as well as racist) and at 72 a significant but greater amount of voters remain unsure of John McCain. I almost think that ageism makes him unelectable.

There appears to be many more Democrats in the "unsure" category than Republicans.

In the circumstances the Repubs may be right Obama should be looking for a 15% Convention bounce, and in the circumstances, that would be irreversible!

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