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"The outcome of these fights will probably rest on one vote in the U.S. Senate:" Obama Cuts Campaign Ad For, Um, Scott Brown | Main | The Pizza Putsch: Ben Nelson Driven From Pizza Joint By Angry, Booing Constituents
January 14, 2010

Coakley's Own Internal Poll Shows Two Point Lead; Democrat Confides, "This One May Be Too Far to Recover"


Coakley's internal poll last night, I've been told, showed her barely ahead, 46 to 44 percent. The momentum clearly favors Brown, and one very smart Massachusetts Democrat I know told me this morning that "this may be too far gone to recover."

Geraghty takes this with a grain of salt, and notes that if Coakley is threatened but not truly doomed, maybe this is the sort of message she wants out there. After all, as has been noted again and again (and h/t to Allah for noting it first), Brown's original best chance of victory consisted of his mounting a stealth insurgency which snuck up on Coakley in the 24 hours before the election, giving her no chance to adjust.

Obviously, if that was Plan A, Plan A has gone to shit. The word is out there. Boy, is the word out there. And Democrats are now fully warned this is officially a Big Important Race.

Be that as it may, I'm pretty psyched about Plan B: Have a big turnout election in which Democrats are suitably alerted and yet still beat 'em.

I don't know if Coakley really would deliberately leak a close poll. Or that a Democrat would try to "help" her by saying she's already almost too far gone to help. That flies in the face of conventional wisdom, where you're always supposed to project confidence and a lead.

I think maybe she's simply cratering. A preference cascade, as Glenn Reynolds introduced me to a while ago: When people aren't aware there are other choices available, or are somehow bullied into thinking only one choice is socially acceptable, they will falsify their preferences and trick themselves, even, into thinking they prefer the one available option.

However, once they are alerted to the fact that another choice is possible (and permissible), suddenly all those falsified preferences reverse themselves in a "preference cascade" and huge shifts in public opinion take place in the space of days.

I can't really tell, but I think Coakley is cratering very, very badly, and probably has gone from 65% to 45% support in ten or fourteen days. That 20% that flipped never really supported her. They just didn't really grasp that another option was available.

I've been listening to this a bit recently, and I think of this as a Moron's Anthem for the Brown Campaign.

Throw it on the ground.

Also from Geraghty: Michael Graham's parody of all of the anti-Scott-Brown ads:

Americans for Job Security is spending a half-million to air a pro-Scott-Brown, anti-ObamaCare ad.

NOTE: The poll numbers mentioned above were from polling that took place before TimeShareGate. They are likely now meaningless, and Coakley almost certainly enjoys a 20 point lead again.

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posted by Ace at 04:22 PM

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