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May 24, 2012

So, Why Does Tom Barrett Keep Releasing Internals

When Nate Silver doesn't really buy them?

There are a few reasons here.

1- He must stop the depression of the Democratic base, particularly outside of his core areas of support (Madison and Milwaukee). Each public poll that gobbles up air time showing Walker leading, and leading, and leading, takes its toll on the recall forces. People devoted to a cause absolutely will be there for you, but those who may not want to show up if they think its hopeless? The more of those voters Barrett can't count on, the smaller his chances of winning (smaller that they already are).

2- Blunting the public polling tsunami indicating Walker will crush him.

This is the Pollster/HuffPo chart showing the trend line and all polls for Walker V Barrett. The race seems close:

But what happens when you eliminate all the "internals" that Barrett keeps whispering about?

Walker's lead nearly doubles, and trends out to a potential double-digit landslide.

3- Attempt to build a last-minute narrative of "coming from behind". His last internal had him down three, but this one, this one only has him down two! Oh joy! Note that even in his OWN internals, Walker's number doesn't drop. He still gets 50%, and with third party votes out there, Barrett still loses, even closely. However, he could push a poll next week showing him up 1, and regain some of the lost enthusiasm already alluded above in the final days.

I am rather surprised no developments in the John Doe case "shocked" the world this week. Rather, biting investigations on the crime trends in Barrett's city took center stage for two straight days (when news of Walker's growing standing wasn't, that is). The last few weeks reminds me of 2008, but in reverse. In October, I and others on the right kept trying to pick apart polls for having "skewed R/D ratios" and questioning sample sizes. I would latch onto "internals" knowing in my gut they weren't true. But hey, I wanted to believe it. We all went through the five stages, and we are seeing a lot of that now on lefty sites like FireDogLake and DailyKos. One thing I didn't mention in either of my "things helping Walker" threads had been held back because I wasn't quite seeing it yet, but I sure do now:

Inevitability. The reality that Walker will probably win is dawning on his own opponents and has been discussed at length on MSNBC, Huffington Post, Kos, FDL, DU, CNN, Politico, local news and other sites and sources too numerous to count. The sense that the Governor is going to beat the recall is very real now, and with prognosticators more professional than me calling it as such, solid efforts by the recall forces to pull a final-week script switch are evaporating.

This is far from the time to get cocky. Barrett and his supporters won't likely make any big moves, nor his supporters, in the coming week. Everything from here to electoral judgement day is centered on getting the voters to the polls for early voting, getting the absentee ballots filed, and contacting those who must show up on June 5th. Walker's supporters have done an incredible job, and will continue to do so, in doing the same. If you haven't visited his site and donated, do so in the waning days. If you worry about shenanigans and can volunteer time as a poll watcher, do it. Most of all, if you reside in Wisconsin, come hell, high water, or a cheese and beer shortage, you must vote.

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posted by CAC at 10:08 PM

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