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POLL: Pew National (7/31 - 8/10)


Pew Research Center
7/31-8/10/08; 2,414 RV, 2.5%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 46, McCain 43 (July: Obama 47, McCain 42)

 

Comments
boskop:

not much here that's a big woop for either.
steady as she goes.

but there is some consistency between these numbers and the PA poll.

mccain gets more backing from his core than does obama. is that not totally weird?

also, hillary-ites such as MOI are holding back at about the same rate as post DNC of 25-30%. what happened to all the pundits and smug chairs of the dnc promising we'd cave when we got over the slight?

oh yeah.

on leadership in crisis...mccain is picking it up and obama is fading.

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zotz:

The most interesting thing thing here is the 11% undecided. These people don't read the newspaper and only occasionally pay attention to the news. They are more likely to vote based on how they feel. Bush won over these people because they didn't like Kerry. Can the Republicans do the same to Obama. That is their playbook. McCain, son of an admiral, with six homes, married to a millionaire heiress, wearing $500 shoes, has to convince that 11% that he is the "good ol' boy" and Obama who achieved everything he has through merit is the "elitist". This may sound like mission impossible but the Republicans will say "We've done it before" and they are right.

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bill kapra:

Boksop, I'm honestly curious about Hillary supporters. How would the PUMA's feel the morning after if they were to be equivalent to Nader voters in 2000? (do check out 1magine's you-tube link, btw for the darker vision of a warmongering McCain). I just can't believe that the satisfaction of depriving the Democratic party and Obama a win would really overcome the dread of electing an anti-choice, pro-war Republican in very many Hillary supporters' minds. (But do set me straight on this if I'm wrong.)

Have we got any polling data on self-identified Hillary supporters and their voting intentions?

All, is there a useful historical antecedent with disaffected party members tipping a balance and can we make meaningful statistical comparisons?

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Undecided:

If one looks at the three polls then there is movement:
June Obama 48/McCain 40
July Obama 47/McCain 42
August Obama 46/McCain 43

Statistically, Obama's lead has disappeared.

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brambster:

Interesting trends in Pew's national polls. Although they make a lot of hay over the change from an 8 point advantage in June for Obama to a 3 point advantage now, their cross tabs show that over 80% of that change in support came from Republicans, though it may be that previously a larger group of independents were sucking up traditional Republicans who came home.

IMO, Republican voters respond well to attack ads and talking points, and this may well be the reason for them coming home recently. They are so used to seeing Republicans carve up Democrats and this probably reminds them that they really don't like Democrats. Of course stronger/more enthusiastic support comes from voting for a candidate rather than voting against a candidate and this is probably the reason for the enthusiasm gap. Dislike for another does not equal enthusiasm for the attacker.

These weak supporters are therefore more likely to be pealed away by effective campaigning. Mostly the strategy is to attack back making the choice of the lesser of two evils, but I doubt that Obama will go that route. I believe that Obama is holding out for the convention where he will lay it on heavy with a positive and forward looking campaign, and keep that going through until election day. That should pull some of the weak support back. I do expect third-party groups to attack McCain, though not with the same ferocity as they attack Obama. The anti-Obama campaign will almost definitely end up trying to paint him not as a celebrity, nor inexperienced, but as the bogeyman that will raise your taxes and let terrorists take over.

Nevertheless, I'm not at all surprised to see Republicans coming home. What is surprising is how long it is taking them, and how they are certainly less enthusiastic than both Obama's supporters and Republican supporters of years past. The people that haven't made up their minds yet will likely wait until the conventions, and then beyond that, the first debate, and then the stragglers, if they show up to vote, will do so at the last moment. I would give Obama the advantage with the earlier voters, but those that are so tuned out that they don't decide until the last moment are much more easily swayed by negative campaigning and the incumbent rule will come into play where they break for the better known guy who is in fact McCain.

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boskop:

obama achieved it through merit?
habeas corpus his transcripts for columbia and harvard?
can't?

what was he some professor or something at U of C? of what? Wrote papers and what not to sustain his tenure?

made more than one dippy speech in october '02 about the war in a low profile job with nada on the line except to distance himself from his hawkish opponent?

answer the above and we'll talk... zotz


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player:

This is a very interesting poll. The margin for error is very low and the sample size is twice as large as the one that they took in July. Actually, I'm shocked that McCain is getting 12% of the black vote. Underneath this percentage could be higher. I'm surprised at the number of people who think that McCain is more of a typical politician than Obama. Obama is the prototype for a typical politician. Maybe they don't know what a typical politician is, or it could be an Obama mind trick.

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boskop:

bill kapra:
watch me!!!

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boskop:

player:
what this election cycle has proved is the fact that rarely have we seen such a Machiavellian polit as obama. the guy is slicker than a hot knife in butter.

he makes mccain look like a dud and BTW, everyone concludes mccain aint too swift there on prompters and what not.

the convention could be revealing. my great fear is mccain's trotting out eeyore (lieverman) as a cross the aisle thing. big disaster. he should find someone else.

about the black vote: that data is proving consistent across the board. why? dunno. i thought it was a mistake, just shallow reporting or bad techniques. but now it seems not to be. we'll see, i remember something of the same - over reporting the low numbers for obama and then come primary day, hillary got her 'tuesday' surprise every single time.

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Undecided:

Democrats are going to control both houses of Congress if they do not blow it. The idea of an inexperienced Obama in the White House is very scary. In other words, voting for Obama just to give the Dems a President is RISKY.

Also the idea of a one-party Congress and President seems very foolish. History shows that rather Dems or GOP our government needs balance to keep it "centered."

P.S. Stupid video trying to scare people about McCain. There is a BIG difference between "warmongering" and "national security."

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brambster:

@player

African-Americans seem to always under-poll the real Democrat advantage on election day. I believe that a large part of this is the urban/socio-economic effect where such voters pay less attention on average to campaigns, but when they show up to vote, the AA community is strongly party line. Kerry received 88% of the AA vote in 2004, and there is certainly no reason to expect Obama to under-perform Kerry.

Obama will likely do no worse than 92% of the AA vote on election day, and he is likely to benefit from dramatically increased AA turnout just as Hillary would benefit from increased female turnout. Obviously the effect of that turnout was so strong for Obama in the primaries that it trumped the female turnout. Obama also regularly over-performed his polls on election day in states with a larger than average AA population.

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brambster:

See, there goes Undecided/Nicole with the Republican attack talking points about Obama being the bogeyman.

She says Obama is "scary" and "RISKY". Naturally there is no hard proof of that offered, or even hinted at.

Do you get paid to post?

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boskop:

brambster:
i agree on the poor balck polling data.

but the latter part of your post vis a vis blacks turning out more than hillary's white chic
turnout... beg to differ. she trampled the King of Sanctimony in all the big ones after feb.

correct?

have we forgotten so fast?

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boskop:

brambster: BUT YOU DO!!

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Stillow:

Sheeesh, why do you people on the left say things like the GOP like to tear up Democrats, its part of their playbook???? Why is you act like the left wear halo's? The left destorys there opponents....look wha they have done to Bush, they compare him to everything from Hitler to the anti christ. To claim only the right engage in dirty politics is a complex you need to overcome. Dirty politics is played on both sides. You're living with your heads buried in the sand if you think Democratic candidates are all holy and pure. Both sides do it...and do it well. It drives me crazy when the left claim to be "nice", postitive and all warm and fuzzy. Take a look at some of the ads the left run i nthe south...its th worst kind of racists nonsense you will find. There are actually groups on the left who think McCain's time as a POW was staged and he was actually helping the enemy....Come on guys, see the light, both parties are dirty.....stop claiming some kind of superirority in civics.

And the reason undecideds are still high is because there are lots of Conservative traditional Democrats out there who are not warming to Bama....and are not sure they want to give the GOP another shot.

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Undecided:

FACT: Obama states often that he wants to raise taxes. Does not matter about the nuances of what and whom, voters hear "raise taxes." Too much Obama lawyer-speak and not enough campaign-speak. So when McCain says Obama wants to raise taxes then McCain is not lying.

FACT: Obama never published an academic paper yet he was a "professor?" Virtually unheard of. But I understand he has another book coming out.

FACT: It is not about negative campaigning in terms of "ferocity" but rather "effectiveness" of message. (MoveOn.org ads are negative but very lame.) McCain hit on something with pushing Obama's "celebrity" as a negative rather than a positive. Really works and is humorously entertaining. Obama will be hit hard by GOP with his "own words" taken directly out of his audiobook. I do not know which words, but that tactic has already been stated as a "gift from Obama."

P.S. Margin of error is based on number in sample. More participants = lower sampling error.

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Undecided:

Hey, brambster. I thought you paid attention to the polls. Obama polls very high for INEXPERIENCED as well as RISKY.

Your accusing non-Obama believers of being paid is getting really old. I suspect in fact that you are really the paid shill.

Also old is accusing me of being someone I am not. This obsession of yours is really sick.

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thoughtful:

I think having absorbed some of the numbers that this is good news for Obama. There are no surprises here, I don't consider the June to August a narrowing trend. McCain remains largely unloved and Obama has much more committed supporters.

I agree that there will be a sharp raising of poisonist ads after the Conventions.

McCain is frightening in terms of his understanding of how the world works in the 21st century. He can only cause a war to exert US supremcy.

The Geo-political and economies have moved on. Work it out: The Chinese keep us a float as a consumer nation, any benefits for drilling oil in the US is at least 10 years away not taking into account any US growth in the meantime.

New Indusrtries like the tech industries on the west coast will have to come on stream. That is where alternative and associated energy products come into it.

The US have a national emmergency on their hands and quite frankly extensions of the Bush economy and a more Utilarist foreign policy that McCain represents can only result in global meltdown.

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brambster:

@boskop

Hillary did very well with Democrats that have a tenancy to cross over party lines. They found a very strong correlation between states that had the highest cross-over voters from D to R in the last two presidential elections to the states that Hillary did extremely well in. Those people will vote for a Democrat in the GE, but only certain Democrats.

I was very careful to point out that Obama may out perform in states with larger than average AA populations and not in states like Kentucky or West Virginia. I don't expect surprises in traditionally contested states like Florida, Ohio, and Missouri, but I do think it is possible in states like Virginia and North Carolina (and some other southern states that won't go for Obama, but he may over-perform in).

I also think that Michigan and Pennsylvania are unlikely pickups for McCain because the AA vote has always been the key for Dems in those states, and they have been turning out in increasing numbers recently. I therefore don't expect that to change. IMO, for every vote that Obama loses in SW and Central PA as a result of the Appalachia effect, he is likely to pick one up from SE PA. I'm more worried about SE Ohio with that effect, but Ohio is not a must win state, and I'm near positive that Bayh will be the VP and help shore up Ohio and Indiana.

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boskop:

Undecided:

i was baiting some zotz person above who said obama earned everything he got.
i mentioned or rather questioned the popular
view that he had published, was brilliant and was a professor.

ALL OF WHICH ARE INCORRECT.
he was a low life lecturer. not professor.
he never published.
and he must have had oh so average grades since they have been summarily DELETED and IMPOSSIBLE to find.
he says he has them but wont disclose.

now you tell me, if i had a summa cum laude grades or even cum laude that earned me entre to columbia or harvard or whatever, dont you think I would plaster them about? dont you think obama would have?

obviously, the big O is hiding again. tredding on myth made large of his o so small self.
the only grades we know of were his harvard ones..very ordinary B's. which at harvard with grade inflation is like c at any other place. (dont argue on this...folks)

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thoughtful:

Race and Risk will decide this election. McCain will be looking the bigger risk - that's the new trend line!

Boskop - Obama was editor of the Harvard Law Review that's heavy!

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zotz:

boskop-
"made more than one dippy speech in october '02 about the war"

All right, let's talk-
Let's talk about more than a trillion down the drain (and climbing), 4000+ dead American servicemen and women, tens of thousands seriously wounded Americans. Of course you probably think the hundreds of thousands of Iraqi dead don't count. All this to conquer a country that was not a threat to the United States and had no connection to al-Qaida!

This is the Washington Post from March 9, 2008:
"There is no such thing as a free lunch, and there is no such thing as a free war. The Iraq adventure has seriously weakened the U.S. economy, whose woes now go far beyond loose mortgage lending. You can't spend $3 trillion -- yes, $3 trillion -- on a failed war abroad and not feel the pain at home."

Your response to all of this is probably "Oops!" You probably think that there should be no political consequences for this disaster. You sound soooo smug in your contempt for a man that opposed this catastrophe while your guy thought it was a great idea. The best response to you is to ask the question that Joeseph Welch asked Joe McCarthy.

"AT LONG LAST, HAVE YOU LEFT NO SENSE OF DECENCY?"

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brambster:

Funny that one would attack Obama's educational accomplishments when McCain has shared that he graduated 5th from the bottom of his class at the Naval Academy. At least George W. Bush went to Yale.

And here it is from the horse's mouth:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=srbX26vp57c

I not one of those that thinks that being well educated should be overrated for a presidential candidate. I also don't believe that McCain is necessarily stupid, just that he didn't care much when going to school, probably because he was the son of an Admiral and rebelling, but I do think that he is very out of touch with modern times.

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1magine:

Boskop - You want Merit?
Please stick to facts, not slime. Senator Obama has sponsored or co-sponsored 570 bills in the 109th and 110th Congress.
Senator Obama has sponsored or co-sponsored 15 bills that have become LAW since he joined the Senate in 2005.
Senator Obama has also introduced amendments to 50 bills, of which 16 were adopted by the Senate.
His record is in fact quite impressive for a junior Senator from Illinois.
Most of his legislative effort has been in the areas of:
* Energy Efficiency and Climate Change (25 bills)
* Health care (21 bills) and public health (20 bills)
* Consumer protection/labor (14 bills)
* The needs of Veterans and the Armed Forces (13 bills)
* Congressional Ethics and Accountability (12 bills)
* Foreign Policy (10 bills)
* Voting and Elections (9 bills)
* Education (7 bills)
* Hurricane Katrina Relief (6)
* The Environment (5 bills)
* Homeland Security (4 bills)
* Discrimination (4 bills)
And the full details including bill numbers? See http://tpzoo.wordpress.com/2008/07/31/obamas-senate-accomplishments/#more-6370
Not to mention one of the most startlingly successful careers as an IL legislator at both crossing the aisle and getting others to cross the aisle. Ever wonder why you don’t hear a single Republican IL legislator EVER bad mouth him? For that matter what about Republican US Senators? More likely to attack McCain, until recently than Obama. In fact, you here more negative attacks from (I) Lieberman than any other member of congress except McCain.
And, don't forget that he is the first black man to be the President of the Harvard Law Review, turned down million dollar offers to litigate for big firms or lobby for corporate giants and returned to the Chicago inner city as he promised, and became one of the most successful community organizers in IL history. Obama is a Constitutional scholar. He taught the Constitution for 12 years at Chicago Law, and knows it inside out and backwards. Obama has written two best selling books.
Much has been made by Senator McCain's supporters of his history as a survivor of a Viet Cong prison camp, of the broken bones and psychological onslaughts that he withstood for five long years. They argue that such an experience builds character. They should also take note of the challenges faced by a black man in America, challenges that have built Senator Obama's character. These may be harder to quantify than imprisonment and torture, but they are onerous in a different and inescapable way.
Obama has served his country well. So has McCain. If Obama was the son and grandson of Admirals and was born 40 years earlier he may have had a similar biography. But he was born to a poor mother in Kansas and a father who left them, and he grew up in a time of relative peace. His bottom up economic policy, focus on foreign diplomacy, and push for universal health care may not be your cup of tea, and therefore you will not vote for him as POTUS; but what he’s done is more than remarkable - only the ignorant (I'm talking to you Boskop) can not see or appreciate that.

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player:

To all concerned:
Didn't George W. Bush have a higher grade point average than John Kerry? Wasn't Kerry ashamed to release his grades until after the election? And all of these papers and political pundits talk all the time about how stupid George W. Bush is. That doesn't say much for Kerry does it? People that use GPAs to measure the IQ of a person don't know much about the world of reality.

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player:

IMAGINE:
If he done all of that in a state senate, imagine what he could do in the U.S. senate if he ever went to work? He is in the right spot. He needs to use his charisma in the senate and get something done. He has no business being commander in chief.

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Stillow:

@zotz

The reason for the invasion was every intelligence agency, including America, France, Britain, Germany, etc beleived Saddam was developing WMD's. Bill and Hillary Clinton also beleived it as did John Kerry. Saddam violated numerous UN resoltuions, kicked out inspectors on a routine basis. So the decision was made to go in, remove the ruling regime and replace it with a more freindly g'ment and also halt there WMD programs. It tunrs out that either Iraq had no WMD or they were moved to somewhere else like Syria...we don't really know. After 9/11 the question was asked what if those planes had been carrying small pox containers, or irradiated material. So it brought into focus the importance of containing WMD and preventing rogue countries with nut cases in charge of them from getting WMD. Saddam had been playing games with us for years, kicking out the insepctors, etc....UN resoltuions are pointless, since the UN doesn't enforce them.
So W made the decision thta thte prospect of Saddam getting his hands on WMD would not be good for the region or for us since he on several occasions proclaimed the US to be evil and should be destoyed.
Playing Monday morning quarterback is easy, turns out Iraq didn' thave WMD, or they moved them before we attacked, in any regard, everyone beleived they had them....the decision was made. Its easy to point out the # of deaths and blame Bush for it, but what would you have done with intelligence that said he is getting WMD and the games he played with the UN....follwoing 9/11 and the new threat of what ifs? Done nothing? More sanctions?
Its a creepy paralell to Iran now. What do we do with Iran? There leader has already stated numerous times his goal is to wipe Israel off the map, so if htey are close to getting nukes, do we invade? Do we do nothing? Do we impose sanctions? What do you seriously do with a mad man in charge of a country with a solid military and who is close to WMD? Just let him have them? what if he decides to follow thru on his threat and sets a nuke of in Israel? Do we act then?
Like I said monday morning quarterbacking is simple, I do not envy the decision Bush had to make and I do not envy ht edecision McCain or obama will have ot make on Iran.
Its not all balck and white!

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thoughtful:

The point of metriculation is to form the basis on which you build intellect, imagination, a broader mind. It is not essential The point about McCain he is from a very privileged background. He has a very narrow real experience of the world, do you really think Congressional junkets give you the real flavour? As I wrote to Undecided he has never managed, led, or governed in his entire life.

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thoughtful:

@Stillow The nuke deterrant works because nukes guarantee mutual destruction. The issue of Iran is fairly simple Israel has its own ability to deal with a threat from Iran. Not that I believe for one moment that Iran's leaders are stupid enough to attack Israel.The US Presidents job is to get all sides to cool it. Not inflame the situation.

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Stillow:

@thoughtful

MAD can't be applied to islamic fundamentalists. Its not like the Soviets who were aathiests and didn't want to die, like we didn't want to die. If you have a country like Iran run by religious finatics, there view of religion requires them to destory the jews. These people want to meet Alah, they don't mind the end of the world because they get there goal of getting to the after life...and if they take out the evil jews doing it, they get a bigger reward. so MAD while it worked with the Soviets, does not apply to religious crazies. So the questionis what do you do?

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Stillow:

@thoughtful

MAD can't be applied to islamic fundamentalists. Its not like the Soviets who were aathiests and didn't want to die, like we didn't want to die. If you have a country like Iran run by religious finatics, there view of religion requires them to destory the jews. These people want to meet Alah, they don't mind the end of the world because they get there goal of getting to the after life...and if they take out the evil jews doing it, they get a bigger reward. so MAD while it worked with the Soviets, does not apply to religious crazies. So the questionis what do you do? The mind set of of these radicals isn't like ours, we have to think outside of what we cosnider logical and realize they are religious nuts who feel if they desotry Israel they are doing the work of God and will be rewarded....hence the suicide bomber, these people do not mind dying for there cause....in fact they are honored for it.....

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jsh1120:

Unfortunately, this excellent site is showing signs of being infiltrated by trolls. There are innumerable sites where tit-for-tat posts attacking each candidate can be placed. For those of us who care about polling techniques and manage to separate our personal preferences from our analytic perspectives, it would be delightful if the trolls would take their juvenile mentalities elsewhere.

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TheVoice_99:

There's your "movement", trolls:


http://www.gallup.com/poll/109453/Gallup-Daily-Obama-48-42.aspx


Oops, sorry to do that to you, AGAIN!!!


Somebody needs to look up the definition of the word, "professor".

Learn English.

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player:

@Thoughtful:
Thats your problem. You don't think Iran is stupid enough to attack Israel. You are putting your own reasonableness into the Islamic fundamentalist thoughts of controlled people. It doesn't work that way. They don't view the world through your eyes. They see things differently. Remember Condi Rice's statement about, who would have ever thought that they would fly planes into a building.

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thoughtful:

@Stillow There are two major currents in this election: Race and Risk. Race is an undercurrent and will always be there.

Risk is a perception current that can ebb and flow with the voters. Therein lies the paradox for McCain.

The McCain campaign will do its best to highten the risk associated with Obama inexperience, national security eg Iran, Georgia. So far Obama is seen as risky.

The Obama campaign will seek to assure on foreign policy, so far failed according to the polls since Obama's overseas trip and possibly celeb endorsement!

Since Georgia McCain has started to sound like a latter day Barry Goldwater crank to some of us over 60! It might sound great to others. Trust me he is frightening the life out of more of the baby boomers.To out Cheney Cheney is not good for the contemporary voter so close to the Iraq debacle, as well.

So the Risk thing cuts both ways ebb & flow. You will see much more concentraton on this in the coming days.

The latest Gallup poll looks interesting with +6% a little movement McCain stuck on 42/43%

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TheVoice_99:

UMMMM, condi is a liar. They knew they would fly planes into buildings. In fact, condi and bush got memos stating such.


http://www.baltimoresun.com/business/nationworld/bal-te.rice29jul29,0,2620591.story?coll=bal-business-headlines


Ooops, someone just got pwned!!

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TheVoice_99:

stillow -

Hey, I have a toll booth I'll sell you for a buck. You just sit there and collect money. Easy cash!

Well, you fell for the bush wmd bs, I thought you'd fall for the ole toll booth scam too.


Anyway, we knew they didn't have any wmds. Only retarded children and creationism advocates believed that garbage.


http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article4466512.ece

How does it feel to get pwned over and over again?

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thoughtful:

@player
I come to this site to examine and analyze polls and exchange ideas how voters are going to vote etc.
But I have to with respect answer your misconceptions.

Condi Rice would say that wouldn't she!

It was well known and there was intelligence far more compelling than WMD in Iraq that Jihadists did have plans to fly planes into buildings and that the twin towers were still prime targets.

There are different types of fundamentalists the ones who attacked us, having declared a jihad some years earlier on 9/11 were Sunni. The Iranians are Shia.

I am currently not aware of any Fatwa or Jihads(declared) by the Iranian fundamentalist clerics hierchy in Iran to attack Israel or the US.

I have visited Iran several times, the first time was over 30 years ago, and yes they don't like Christians in their holy cities or Jews.

That's a long stretch to say that the State of Iran wants to destroy themselves by attempting to nuke Israel.

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Stillow:

@thoughtful

I still think your just missing the point. Do we want nutso's to have nuclear weapons? Most troublemakers around the world want a lefist preisdent in America, they are much weaker and more likely to appease than there right leaning counterparts. I recall the Iranian hostage in the late 70's where Carter looked weak....Reagan came in and the hostages were freed because the Iranians knew not to mess with Reagan...Safety and stability can only be ahived thru the use of force. The cause of freedom and the existance of free nations can only be defended and maintained by the use of corce. Peace thru strength as it was coined in the 80's.
It is only a matter of time before nukes are smuggled across our borders and placed in various cities thru out America. If illegals can cross at will, I assure you so can suitcase nuke carrying terrorists.
Its a question that will plague the next president, is what to do with Iran. If they achive nukes, indeed hte region and the world will become a much more dangerous place. God help us.

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Clint Cooper:

lol at undecided. The change in this poll comes from counting Dems and Reps as roughly equal. Just lol.

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player:

@Thoughtful:
No one in Europe paid much attention to the rise of Hitler either. Once militant thoughts get into the higher thoughts of a country, those irrational thoughts have a way of consuming power. It no longer becomes a humanitarian issue controlled by a single individual. It gathers up the same like thoughts around the country and creates a power base. Its only natural. No way Iran gets Nukes.

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thoughtful:

@Bramster I think that you are partly right about the negative attacks bringing Repubs home, I think that you might want to consider McCain's sound bytes on energy having greater impact. "Drill here and Drill now".

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bill kapra:

boksop,

apparently, the old truism "hell hath no fury like a woman scorned" bears out in your case.

Or, more likely, you're a troll.

In either case, I'm still curious to know if we have any polling data on Hillary supporters. I'd really love to see some post-hoc data on Nader voters and compare the socio-psych profiles with the PUMAs.

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gregspolitics:

ET TU PEW
The entire change from July to August appears to be due to change in the partisan ID % and nothing more. If any of the changes Pew discusses have actually occurred since June, then they occurred from June to July and not since. Most glaringly, they say McCain gained +5 in GOP support and +1 in Dem support from June to August but all of this occurred from June to July when McCain went from 82 to 86 in GOP support(+4) and 9 to 11 in Dem support(+2). He actually lost -1 on Dem support from July to August which is balanced by his bare +1 (86 to 87) in GOP support from July to August. Furthermore, while his Indep support is the same in June and August, he has actually lost -1 from July (43 to 42) while Obama gained +3 (42 to 45). Thus the changes in the partisan subsamples from July to August actually slightly favor Obama. Even since June, Obama went from 82 to 83 among Dems and 42 to 45 among Indeps. What really changed is the GOP from June to July which probably reflects some consolidation of his base by McCain, but from June to July and not really from July to now. The real difference from July to August is in partisan ID which on the N number is 38/28/31 in July Dem/GOP/Indep and 34/31/31 in August wiht the rest other or dont know. Additonally, the partisan ID after demographic weighting in each poll is apparently 34/26/34 in August while it was 36/24/34 in July (assuming I am understanding the numbers on Pew page 26 correctly). Without an explanation (which is not attempted by Pew) of why partisan ID would change 4 point (-2 Dem and +2 GOP) from July to August, this would appear to just be statistical noise and not justify either the headline or the analysis. It is annoying enough that the news media cant admit that some polling changes are just statistical noise and not real, but especially this year the pollsters themselves (and not just Pew, of course) seem determined to make something of changes which they know may only be statistical noise. Amusingly, it appears that the campaigns may be more realistic in their analysis than are the pollsters as it appears to me from their advsertising that the McCain campaign knows that while they may have done some base consolidation, they are clearly still behind in a statistically meaningful way while the Obama campaign appears to believe that while McCain may have gained some of the base he was probably always going to gain anyway by election day, he has made no real inroads into Obama's support, both as it currently exists and among those whose support Obama's campaign believes it will have on election day if not today.

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