It's Now or Never
All the candidates are giving it everything they have this weekend and the next two days.
Barack Obama is in Ohio trying to hang onto a state where he has a slight lead.
John McCain will be campaigning in Pennsylvania today, trying for a come-from-behind upset in this
economically battered state. However, the McCain campaign has not abandoned Ohio as it sent Sarah
Palin to campaign in Canton and Columbus today. Yesterday Obama was in Colorado, Missouri, and Nevada
while McCain campaigned in Virginia, New Hampshire, and Pennsylvania.
Early Voting Soars
One problem with all this campaigning is that for many voters it is too late.
According to the
Early Voting Information Center
early voting is going to break all records. For example, in North Carolina, 42% of all Democrats, 35% of
all Republicans, and 30% of all independents have already voted. In Florida the numbers are
22%, 15%, and 20%, respectively. Here is a summary of early voting at
CNN also has a
on early voting.
The latest national polls put Obama ahead by 7.8 points nationally.
The Washington Post
that in the most recent 159 national polls, Obama has led them all.
He also leads in all the states John Kerry won in 2004, giving him a base of 252 electoral votes.
He also has led all year in Iowa and New Mexico, bringing his total to 264. Thus he needs to find
five or six electoral votes in states Bush won in 2004. Today's polls suggest Florida, Ohio, and Virginia
as good hunting grounds, as he leads in all of them. In addition, he has led for weeks in Colorado and
is effectively tied in North Carolina and Indiana. He even has a shot at North Dakota and Montana.
McCain has to win all of them. If we assume that all eight of these states are 50-50, then McCain
has to flip a coin and get heads eight times in a row. The chances of this are 1 in 256. But it is
worse than that since a number of these states, especially Colorado, look a lot worse for McCain than 50-50.
Four Questions the Election WIll Answer
The LA Times has a
about four questions this election will answer:
- Is America prepared to elect a black President?
- Is the old red-blue culture war still going on?
- Do Americans want a bigger government or a smaller government?
- Has the demographic composition of the electorate fundamentally changed?
To this list, one might add:
- Have the Republicans been changed from a national party to a regional party?
- Has public financing of campaigns gone the way of the dodo?
- Has the political power of the evangelicals waned?
We'll know Wednesday. Or maybe we won't know. One complication caused by early voting is that the exit polls Tuesday
will sample only 60-70% of the electorate and it may well be a biased sample given the fact that so many Democrats
have voted early so Tuesday voters may be disproportionately Republicans.
Study Shows Virtually No Evidence of Voter Fraud
The Republicans have been talking a lot about voter fraud, but yet another study shows that it
barely exists. Politico has a
in which a reporter pressed Ronald Michaelson, a veteran election administrator who is now
working for the McCain campaign, to cite a single documented case of voter fraud that resulted
from a phony registration and he could not come up with even one example. When asked, another
McCain official, Ben Porritt, came up with 13 articles. However, 11 of these did not involve
registration fraud at all and only one involved a noncitizen voting. While there is no doubt
that low-paid workers for ACORN and other groups have turned in false registrations to ACORN (to earn a bit more),
the organization itself selects out the clearly bogus ones and puts these in a separate envelope before
turning them in (as required by law). This is how the bogus registrations get in the news. However,
documented cases of bogus registrations actually leading to illegal voting are virtually nonexistent
as the fraud being committed is the low-paid workers defrauding ACORN itself of a bit of money, not actual voting fraud.
Rasmussen Adjusts Partisan Targets
As he has been doing every week for several months, Rasmussen adjusted the partisan breakdown
for the final week of polling. According to the most recent six weeks of his polling, Rasmussen
believes that 39.9% of the voters are Democrats and 33.4% of the voters are Republicans, with
26.7% independent. These numbers are important not only for Rasmussen's polling, but for the election
itself as about 80% of the people vote for their party's candidate. This partisan breakdown means
that even if the independents split 50-50, Obama has an edge in the popular vote of roughly 3-4%.
The last few days, both parties are fighting for the independents, who will decide the election.
Polls on California Propositions
In addition to races for President, Senate, House, and many state offices, in some states voters also
have a number of propositions they can vote on. In fact, in California, with Obama the certain winner,
politics has focused largely on the ballot propositions. According to a new
proposition 8, which would amend the state constitution to define marriage as a union of one man and one woman,
is behind 50% to 47%. The poll also shows that for the most part, McCain voters are for 8 and Obama voters are
Another hot-button item in California is proposition 4, which would amend the state constitution to prohibit a physician
from performing an abortion on a minor until 48 hours after the physician informed the minor's parents.
The backers hope this will reduce abortions performed on teenage girls, who represent a large fraction of all
abortions. Opponents say it will lead to more back-alley abortions and deaths among pregnant teenagers.
puts proposition 4 behind 46% to 40%.
Obama Continues to Lead Nationally
In the national polls, Obama's average lead is now 7.8%, a bit more than yesterday,
but not significantly more. Here are the numbers.
- CBS News (Obama +13)
- Diageo (Obama +7)
- Gallup expanded (Obama +10)
- IBD (Obama +5)
- Rasmussen (Obama +5)
- Research 2000 (Obama +7)
- Washington Post/ABC News (Obama +9)
- Zogby (Obama +6)
We have another 20 presidential polls today.
In Florida, Obama is still a tad ahead, but a bit less than he was. McCain appears to
be catching up a bit there. However, Indiana is still a tie. This state was not supposed
to be in play, but it is closer than expected although McCain is likely to win it in the end.
A new poll in Ohio puts Obama ahead there 57% to 41%, but this is certainly an outlier.
Nevertheless, Obama is probably still substantially ahead in Ohio, a state McCain cannot
afford to lose. Obama also continues to have a small lead in Virginia, another must-win
state for McCain. Finally, while Obama continues to lead in Pennsylvania, McCain is
getting closer there. A McCain win in Pennsylvania would give him more breathing room in
the other swing states.
We also have four Senate polls.
All of them show Democratic landslides in Iowa, New Jersey, New Mexico, and Virginia,
|| Tom Harkin*
|| Christopher Reed
|| Oct 23
|| Oct 23
| New Jersey
|| Frank Lautenberg*
|| Richard Zimmer
|| Oct 29
|| Oct 31
|| Monmouth U.
| New Mexico
|| Tom Udall
|| Steve Pearce*
|| Oct 29
|| Oct 31
|| Mark Warner
|| Jim Gilmore*
|| Oct 29
|| Oct 30
We also have two House polls in Nevada.
In NV-03 it is a tie at 44% each, opening the possibility of a Democratic upset.
In NV-02, the Republican incumbent, Dean Heller, is safe.
|| Jill Derby
|| Dean Heller*
|| Oct 28
|| Oct 29
|| Dina Titus
|| Jon Porter*
|| Oct 28
|| Oct 29
If you like this Website, tell your friends. You can also share by clicking this button
-- The Votemaster
Your donation is greatly appreciated. It will buy ads to publicize the site.