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October 31, 2008

Undecided Voters Lean McCain; Have +17% Favorable View of Palin

Happy Hunting Ground?

Note that they are largely proto-PUMAs, too.

Who are they? They look a lot like the voters who've already locked onto a candidate, though they're more likely to be white and less likely to be liberal. And they disproportionately backed Hillary Rodham Clinton's failed run for the Democratic nomination.

...

Overall, the share of these voters—sometimes referred to as "persuadables"—has barely budged from levels measured in June and September AP-Yahoo News polls, conducted online by Knowledge Networks.

But the survey—which has repeatedly quizzed the same group of 2,000 adults since last November—shows considerable churning below the surface. Of those now changeable, nearly three-quarters said in June their minds were made up, and half said so just last month.

"These tend to be people with a lower level of knowledge about the election; they don't follow politics as closely," said Michael McDonald, a political science professor from George Mason University who studies voting behavior. "If they can't distinguish between the candidates at this stage, the question is if they will vote."

Election Day is Tuesday. The survey found Obama leading McCain among all likely voters, 51 percent to 43 percent, with a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

Almost four in 10 persuadables lean toward McCain, and about as many are considering backing Obama, while the rest are either undecided or lean toward other candidates. Viewed another way, about one in every 10 supporters of Obama or McCain says he could still change his mind.

Even so, persuadable voters could be especially fertile hunting ground for McCain in the closing days of a contest in which most polls show him trailing.

These people...

"These people." What a giveaway.

... trust Obama less than decided voters do to handle the economy, the Iraq war and terrorism. They are less accepting that the Illinois senator has enough experience to be president. And by a 17 percentage-point spread, more see Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin favorably than unfavorably, unlike the narrow majority of voters already backing a candidate who dislike her.

...


Just four in 10 persuadables report being contacted by political workers urging them to vote in the presidential contest, compared with just over half of those who've made up their minds. That could reflect the campaigns' targeting their resources to more motivated voters or to problems locating these less involved people.

There is still a lot that phone-banking or canvassing can do.

There's also a little that money can do. I forget who reported it, but the Republican National Trust PAC is planning to blitz their Wright ad in battleground states this weekend.


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posted by Ace at 05:39 PM

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