Main map

Presidential polls: CO FL OH VA
Dem pickups: (None)
GOP pickups: FL IN IA NC

Previous | Next


Downloadable data

News from the Votemaster

Obama's Attacks on Bain Appear to be Working

Taking a cue from the Republicans' swiftboating of John Kerry in 2004, Obama has been relentlessly hitting Romney on his supposed strength: his knowledge of business and how the economy works. Increasing evidence is showing that the approach is working. Four in 10 voters in the swing states have said that information they have gotten in the past week (presumably from Obama's ads attacking Romney for outsourcing jobs) has made them less likely to vote for him. The feedback loop here--run negative ads, voters like Romney less--is just going to encourage more negative ads from Obama, which, in turn will stimulate more negative ads from Romney. It will be downhill all the way to November.

And maybe beyond it. Stu Rothenberg points out that whoever wins may find the well so poisoned that governing is completely impossible. When the new Congress assembles in January, the only thing on anybody's mind may be the the 2014 elections (well, maybe not--the long-range thinkers in Congress may be focused on the 2016 elections). Solving the country's problems may simply not be on the agenda.

Republicans Filibuster DISCLOSE Act

Congressional Democrats trying to pass the DISCLOSE Act, which would require organizations involved in political campaigns to disclose their donors was killed by a Republican filibuster yesterday, as expected. The attempt to pass it was simply done so that Democrats can say Republicans are against transparency (which, oddly enough, used to be something Republicans pushed). In a way, the vote was like the many votes the House has taken to repeal Obamacare. They are for show only as everyone knows the bill is going nowhere.

R.I.P. Independent Journalism

Reporters love scoops and politicians love staying on message and the two are coming together in an unholy way. More and more, politicians are giving interviews subject to the condition that the politician or campaign gets to edit the story before it is published. Needless to say, anything critical or off message is going to meet the backspace key head on. Allowing the people being reported on to censor the news is deadly to independent journalism but, sadly, it has become the new normal.

Americans Woefully Ignorant about Government

Lack of incisive journalism isn't the only reason our political discourse is of such a low level. One third of Americans can't name even one of the three branches of government and another third can name only one of them. Not only do the citizens not know very much, but they don't care either: the U.S. ranks 120th out of 169 democracies in the world in voter turnout. Add to this the Citizen United decision, which allows billionaires to spend millions of dollars on attack ads aimed at a very uninformed and unengaged electorate, and this probably does not augur well for the future of democracy in America unless something is done.

The usual proposal is to improve the schools. Everyone agrees they need improvement, but the devil is in the details. Democrats say we need to improve the public schools by paying teachers more to make the profession more attractive and by reducing class sizes. Republicans say what is needed is more charter schools, rigorous testing, and curbing the power of teachers' unions. Result: nothing gets done.

Can Your Mom Run Your SuperPAC?

By law, superPACs cannot coordinate with the candidate they are supporting. So what happens when the person running a candidate's superPAC is the candidate's mother? This situation has occurred in the WA-01 Democratic primary, where the mother of one of the candidates, Laura Ruderman, is funding and running a superPAC aimed at destroying one of Ruderman's Opponents, Suzan DelBene. Situations like this make a mockery of the election laws.

Today's Presidential Polls

State Obama Romney   Start End Pollster
Colorado 45% 44%   Jul 09 Jul 13 Purple Strategies
Florida 45% 48%   Jul 09 Jul 13 Purple Strategies
Ohio 48% 45%   Jul 09 Jul 13 Purple Strategies
Virginia 46% 44%   Jul 09 Jul 13 Purple Strategies