President Obama is up in Michigan, according to a new poll realeased Wednesday from in-state pollster EPIC-MRA and sporsored by the Detroit Free Press. Obama gets 48 percent support to Republican candidate Mitt Romney's 42 percent overall, leading by 6 points as he did in the last EPIC-MRA poll of the state, two weeks ago. From the Free Press:
I think the auto issue ... that has solidified things for Obama, said EPIC-MRA pollster Bernie Porn, referring to the 2009 investment and structured bankruptcy of General Motors and Chrysler which was led by the administration and is widely credited with helping both automakers return to profitability. In recent days, Romney who said in 2008 he would have limited government help for the companies has suggested in radio and TV spots in Ohio that the rescue did more for jobs in China than the U.S., despite the creation of thousands of jobs in Michigan and across the country...
Half of those polled said the rescue of GM and Chrysler was a deciding factor in their support and of those, nearly two-thirds backed Obama. Among the slightly less than half that said it wasnt a deciding factor, Romney had the edge, but by less -- 56% to 33%. Meanwhile, the number of Michigan voters giving Obama favorable marks rose 4 percentage points to 55% from the early October survey; Romneys remained constant at 45%.
Nate Silver ?@fivethirtyeight
7 polls released in Ohio in past 48 hours: Obama +2, Obama +3, Obama +3, Obama +3, Obama +5, Obama +5, Obama +5. #notthatcomplicated
He sounded very pessimistic about Romney's chances on Andrea Mitchell's show. And the discomfort was showing on his face.
Just flashed on my phone. Last week it was 49-49.
If you had any doubts that 2012 is not 2008, doubt no more.
The Democrats survived two consective days of early voting sites being in GOP-friendly territory by extending their lead in Clark County to more than 50,000 voters. (Statewide, the Republicans actually turned out more voters than the Democrats on Monday.) The wave of 2008 has become a high tide of 2012 -- dangerous to the GOP, but, perhaps, not fatal.
There are still three days left for the Democrats to solidfy their firewall, but they will not get to 83,000 (the 2008 lead), nor will they get to the 12,000-voter lead in Washoe County, where the Democrats have a 500-vote early/mail lead (absentees not in yet all counted in Washoe) out of about 80,000 votes cast. I still think the Democrats have an advantage unless Mitt Romney is winning independents by 20 points or more -- and depending on just how large Election Day turnout is for Republicans. My guess is Democratic Party strategists feel good, but not quite secure.
The polls I trust still show the president ahead by a few points, so that tells me Obama is holding his own among indies, which is the key to the election now. The last three days of '08 had the biggest turnout, so we'll see if that pattern holds.
The Clark numbers (early/mail):
Democrats -- 175,715, or 48 percent
Republicans -- 124,176, or 34 percent
Others -- 67,665, or 18 percent
So the turnout relative to the registration lead (15 points) now slightly favors the Republicans. Those actual numbers: Democratic turnout is 45 percent, and GOP turnout is just above 47 percent. So the Republican turnout edge could well be 3 points or so in Clark by the end of early/mail voting, which could mean it gets to 5 or more after Election Day.
That's not enough to make up for the Democratic registration edge, but if independents vote overwhelmingly for Romney, could there be a Nov. 6 surprise?
Yes, I am deliberately cherry-picking a bit. But the discrepancy seems to hold if you look at the data in a more comprehensive way. Nor is it an unusual feature of the FiveThirtyEight model. Rather, pretty much every method for evaluating the election based on state polls seems to hint at a very slight popular vote lead for Mr. Obama, along with an Electoral College one.
In the table below, Ive listed the current forecasts at seven different Web sites that use state polls, sometimes along with a modicum of other information like a states past voting history, to produce predictions of the popular vote in each state.
The first of these sites is FiveThirtyEight. The others, in the order that theyre listed in the table, are Electoral-Vote.com; Votamatic, by the Emory University political scientist Drew Linzer; HuffPost Pollster; Real Clear Politics; Talking Points Memos PollTracker; and the Princeton Election Consortium, which is run by Sam Wang, a neuroscientist at Princeton. These are pretty much all the sites Im aware of that use state polling data in a systematic way.
You can see that the various projections strongly agree with another, for the most part, in making calls about individual states. The only state where different sites show different candidates ahead right now is Florida, where Talking Points Memo gives Mr. Obama a nominal 0.2-percentage point lead while the others (including FiveThirtyEight) have Mr. Romney slightly up instead. There are also four states New Hampshire, Iowa, Colorado and Virginia in which some methods show an exactly tied race while others give Mr. Obama the lead.
Although Hurricane Sandy kept President Barack Obama away from a scheduled trip to Green Bay, Wis., on Tuesday, the campaign has tentatively rescheduled his appearance for Thursday.
The plan now is for Obama to speak at Austin Straubel International Airport in Green Bay on Thursday. Doors open at 8:30 a.m. CT.
People who originally had a ticket for Tuesday's event can get into Thursday's, while others need to sign up at the campaign's website.
Jonathan Chait hasn't entirely convinced me that the "Mittmentum" narrative is concocted by the candidate. Is Romney massaging that narrative. Sure. Is it bogus? Not really. In swing states, Romney is polling only slightly behind George W. Bush's 2004 numbers, and Bush won. Barack Obama's debate performances in Long Island and Boca Raton saved him from total collapse, but they didn't reverse his numbers.
But Romney's Great Minnesota Feint is at least as much about the Great God Momentum as it is about the candidate's shot in Minnesota. The campaign claims the state is tied. Public polling gives Obama a narrow lead. The Romney campaign is on the air in Minneapolis. So is the Obama campaign. Bill Clinton will hit Minneapolis and Duluth today. The Romney campaign is holding... one rally, with Paul Ryan, at Signature Flight Support in Minneapolis. It starts at 4:15, when Ryan arrives after a flight from nearby La Crosse, Wisconsin. It can't be very long, because Ryan's supposed to be at the GOP's victory center in Hudson, Wisconsin, at 5:05. Ryan touches down, competes with the Clinton headlines, and skedaddles.
The Romney push in Pennsylvania looks more legit.
Republican officials with knowledge of the plan report that Romneys campaign will begin running ads statewide as soon as Wednesday. The buy includes the expensive Philadelphia broadcast market, where Romneys campaign was reluctant to invest earlier in the month. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss campaign strategy.
But that looks more like the late McCain push of 2008. And that would make reporters skeptical -- unless there was a simultaneous Minnesota push to talk about!
It hasn't gotten too much attention outside of talk radio, but if accurate, Gallup's study of early voters neutralizes one of the Obama campaign's best road-to-victory talking points. As it conducted tracking polls (which have been paused for now), Gallup asked voters whether they'd cast ballots or intended to before election day. The early voters broke 52-46 for Mitt Romney. The dawdling voters who would vote before election day were tied, 49-49. The voters waiting for November 6 broke for Romney, again, by a 6-point margin.
This would be easy to explain away if Obama had lagged in 2008's early vote. After all, this study includes votes in Georgia and Texas and other places that have broken away from Obama. But... in 2008, Obama was winning this vote. An identical Gallup study taken around the same time gave Obama a 53-43 lead with early voters and a 50-44 lead on voters who would wait for election day. I've asked the Obama campaign to explain what Gallup might be missing, and will update with any response, but what response would explain this?
UPDATE: But this is just Gallup. The Obama campaign has kept up an early vote blog, offering new numbers from the states, and it makes a good case that it's held its swing state lead. This, according to polls, is the range of the possible early vote lead.
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About RandySFPartner, father and liberal Democrat. I am a native Michigander living in San Francisco who is a citizen of the world.
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