The Liberal Crab’s Poll of “Poll of Polls” – 28 October 2008


Popular Vote

Obama – 51.1% +6.7%

McCain – 44.3%

Electoral College

Obama – 362

McCain – 176

In the popular vote analysis, McCain continues to march – though slowly – up the polls.  He gained another .4%, and broke the 44% threshold.  Obama, on the other hand, has remained relatively flat.  Today he dropped .1%.  That comes after three days at the same level of support.  Since Friday, when Obama’s gap between McCain and him was at it’s zenith, Obama’s gap has closed by 1.2% from from 7.9% to 6.7%.  For Obama, there is still a lot of good news.  First, we expected the polls to tighten and this tightening is so slight that many pollsters are arguing that this is just statistical noise.  I tend to disagree since we’ve seen three days of improvement by McCain.  However, to take a popular vote lead, McCain needs to pick up 1.1% in the polls each day through Election Day.  In the three days McCain has made up ground, he’s picked up .4%/day.  In the three days since he started gaining he’s been able to make up only the amount he needs to close each day.  Again, not impossible, but without a significant shift in the trajectory, he can’t win the popular vote.  Removing my two degrees of separation from the actual polls, the individual trackers have either gone up, down, or remained static.  For the most part, the polls that have had the bigger lead for Obama have tightened (Daily Kos/Research 2000, Gallup) , while the polls with the smaller leads have showed Obama opening up a little more lead (IBD).  And yes, the ones in the middle seem to be relatively static (Rasumssen, Zogby, Battleground).  I continue to maintain that while the polls are tightening, they are only regressing to their equilibrium of Obama at 50% and McCain at 46%.

On the Electoral College, the story remains the same as it has in the 16 days we’ve been running the poll.  However, I am expecting to see a drop from the 360’s to the to the 330’s by the weekend.  North Carolina, Missouri, and Indiana appear to have moved from Obama to toss-up and some polls have Indiana already back in McCain’s column.  But that still puts Obama up by 60 Electoral Votes from what he needs to win.  Obama could still lose two out of the four – Florida, Ohio, Virginia, and Pennsylvania and win by 12-25 votes.  That would still give him some cushion if he didn’t win all the other toss-up states he is currently winning.  Really, it appears that only North Carolina, Missouri, and Indiana are the only ones really tightening.  Indiana is the only one that is showing some strong leanings for McCain.

Six days out, McCain still needs the same eight states we’ve been discussing for over two weeks now.  That is less than a day’s focus per state – and barely one state/day with Palin and McCain in different states.  At this point, he is putting all his eggs into the Pennsylvania basket.  He will let his ads, surrogates, and robocalls do his work in the other seven states he is tied or behind in – to help win him the election.

Also, please see my post at the Daily Kos on the race tightening.  I got props (not literally) from David Gergen this evening – agreeing with my take on ‘Obama poll bumps’.

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