Main map

Presidential polls: MO
Dem pickups: (None)
GOP pickups: IN NC

Previous | Next


Downloadable data

News from the Votemaster

100 Days to Go

With only 100 days to go before the election, the campaigns are starting to ramp up, but with the Olympics in the way and then the August doldrums coming up, there is not likely to be much happening until the Republican National Convention, in Tampa, which starts Aug. 27. Yes, the negative ads are running (click here for time-of-day and type-of-program breakdown) but too many people just aren't paying attention and won't until after Labor Day. Despite months of ads by both sides, all many voters know about Romney is that he is rich, Mormon, and not Obama.

Dan Balz of the Washington Post raises eight questions that may decide the election:

  1. Will the campaign be relentlessly negative to the end?
  2. Will Romney's Veep matter?
  3. Which campaign will have more money?
  4. Will Romney's wealth and business record help or hurt him?
  5. Which groups of voters matter most?
  6. Is the President hostage to the economy?
  7. How important will be debates be?
  8. With back-to-back conventions, will either candidate get a bounce?

Voters Like Obama More than They Like Romney

The voters are kind of strange. They don't like the economy at all and by a wide margin they think the country is going in the wrong direction, but by a 2 to 1 margin, they consider Obama more likable than Romney. It shouldn't matter, but it does. Even though the voters preferred Al Gore's policies to George Bush's by a wide margin, the 2000 election was pretty close to a tie because people felt Gore was too stiff. Same thing in 2004 with John Kerry. This time it is the Republican who is stiff and the Democrat who is easy going. Part of the issue here is that the President is on television essentially every day so he is like a neighbor. If you fundamentally don't like your neighbor, it doesn't help much that he keeps his lawn trimmed, is quiet as a mouse after 10 P.M., and starts shoveling his sidewalk before the first snowflake hits the ground.

Romney's Advisor Would Back Israeli Military Strike against Iran

Romney has arrived in Israel for talks and photo ops with Israeli leaders in an attempt to sway Jewish and evangelical voters. To make it clear where he stands, his top foreign policy advisor (but not Romney himself) said that Romney would back an Israeli strike on Iran to stop it from getting nuclear weapons. Having an advisor say this instead of the candidate himself is good because most voters don't realize the difference and if pressed in the debates about whether he wants a (nuclear) war in the Middle East, he can always point out that he never took a position on this matter.

Tomorrow morning Romney will hold a fundraiser at the King David Hotel in Jerusalem with wealthy American Jews who are flying in for the occasion. In violation of the protocol Romney negotiated with the media in April, no reporters will be allowed in. There was no explanation as to why. Of course Romney will get bad press for this, but as with his taxes, he has clearly decided that bad press is simply not important to him.

Beth Myers Releases Names of Many People Who Have No Chance at Being Veep

One of those rituals in American politics is that candidates are forced to give out short lists of people being considered as running mates. It is important to have these names include a good mix of men, women, governors, senators, previous opponents, and ethnic minorities to show how broad the net is being cast. Most of the people on the list are not serious contenders and never were, but for political reasons candidates often feel they are required to pretend like they are taking them Very Seriously. They aren't. Beth Myers, who is nominally running the Veep search for Mitt Romney, sent out two tweets listing the names of people she wants everyone to think she is considering. But in reality, Romney is the guy in charge and has probably long since picked his running mate. That decision is so important that he would never outsource it, no matter what. This whole circus is just for show and the timing of the release is probably intended to distract from Romney's gaffes in the U.K.

Here are the names Myers tweeted and some comments about each one.

Potential Veep Notes
Sen Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) Brings too little to the ticket. Was tweeted to impress women
Tim Pawlenty Boring white guy from the Midwest. Definitely a possibility
Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) Loudmouth loose cannon. He would overshadow Romney
Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA) Not ready for prime time and his real name is Piyush. Birthers would go batty
Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) Not vetted nationally and lied about parents. Mexicans don't identify with Cubans
Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) Smart and attractive but would allow Obama to run on a "save Medicare" platform
Newt Gingrich Who's Beth kidding? Romney would rather run with Ann's horse than Gingrich
Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) Pity he ran OMB for Bush, but nobody's perfect. Most likely choice
Gov. Bob McDonnell (R-VA) If he's the nominee, buy stock in companies that make vaginal probes
Condoleezza Rice Expert on foreign policy but too much association with Bush and she's pro choice
Sen. John Thune (R-SD) If Portman and Pawlenty have skeletons in their closets, Thune would do
Gov. Susan Martinez (R-NM) On paper, a fantastic pick but she's too pretty and would be compared to Sarah Palin
Rick Santorum If Romney were running for Pope instead of President, Santorum would be great

One thing is for sure though. When George W. Bush outsourced the Veep selection to Dick Cheney, Cheney concluded that he himself was the best person for the job. That's not going to happen this time. Myers is not going to pick herself (or Cheney), even though Myers is Romney's top aide and he trusts her completely. Probably her real job is to dig into Portman and Pawlenty's past and make sure there are no surprises in there.

Today's Presidential Polls

State Obama Romney   Start End Pollster
Missouri 42% 51%   Jul 23 Jul 25 Mason Dixon