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Update: Reuters IPSOS Ohio: 46-46, Tie »
October 22, 2012

Gallup: Romney 51, Obama 45; With Registered Voters, 48-47

Corrected: It's 51-45, not 51-46 as I headlined. The "six" was in my head from "six point lead."

Romney loses a point from both overnight. Still seeing an anti-Obama bounce from the debate.

A poll last week claimed something like 39% of women rated abortion as the most important issue. Gallup says that's just not true-- women rate the economy and jobs as the top issues, at about the same percentages that men do, followed by the federal deficit and healthcare. Abortion is cited as the top issue by 1% of women.

There's a 1% for ya.

Molly Ball wrote in The Atlantic (link to Hot Air):

Unlike their more conservative cohorts, these women agreed that abortion is not any of the federal government’s business. But they also didn’t believe abortion rights were on the line in the coming election. “It has never changed,” Zebib said. “We’ve had pro-life presidents many times, and it didn’t change. It’s a bumper sticker. They try to divert our attention.”

Eileen touched her friend’s arm. “Most women I know, whether they’re for Obama or Romney, they feel the same thing,” she said. “It’s a distraction. That whole Gloria Steinem thing is old.”…


The “binders” line didn’t register at all among the undecided women.

But of course it's not really meant to. It's meant to charge up the Democratic base. I don't think Obama has much hope of winning Independents. His best play is to make the election a stinkbomb of tiny partisan appeals that Indepdendents just aren't interested in... so they stay home.

For Obama, the election is solely about churning out the base, preferably in numbers exceeding 2008. (Though that seems very unlikely.)

I keep quoting Larry Sabato's analysis from two months ago:

he data in Table 1 show that compared with voters supporting a candidate, swing voters were disproportionately white and female. They were also much more likely to describe themselves as completely independent and much less likely to describe themselves as Democrats or independents leaning toward the Democratic Party. But the most dramatic differences between swing voters and voters supporting a candidate involved their opinions about President Obama and their enthusiasm about voting in 2012.

Swing voters had much more negative opinions of President Obama’s job performance than other voters. In fact, their opinions were almost as negative as those of Romney supporters. Only 11% of swing voters approved of Obama’s job performance compared with 6% of Romney voters. In contrast, 92% of Obama voters approved of the president’s job performance.

But while swing voters were similar to Romney voters in their evaluation of President Obama’s job performance, they were much less enthusiastic about voting. Only 19% of swing voters described themselves as extremely or very enthusiastic about voting in 2012 compared with 47% of Romney supporters and 50% of Obama supporters. And 58% of swing voters described themselves as not too enthusiastic or not at all enthusiastic about voting compared with only 27% of Romney supporters and 21% of Obama supporters.

Romney's mission is a little more complicated than Obama's. He'd like to turn out Independents (inclined to vote against Obama) and the Republican base.

Brit Hume observed:

My thought about that would be that Romney will undoubtedly run a lot of ads that add up to saying that, and he will say it a lot himself and so will his surrogates on the campaign trail,” Hume said. “I think Romney has — look, I think Obama’s record is such a burden to him that he has no real choice but to go negative and go negative hard, which to a great extent he has.”

The reason Romney shouldn’t go as negative, Hume said, was to set up a contrast between him and the negativity of Obama.

“I think Romney is in a different position because when people turn to the prospect of, ‘Well OK, what happens if we elect him’ — he needs to radiate something of a positive spirit … I would just say that people need to believe that if they turn to him, he can make things better. And if he seems morose and negative all the time, he’ll fail to convey that sunny spirit. He needs a bit of sunlight in his message and I think that’s important to him. In a way that’s the game and it’s too late for Obama. He can have all the sunlight in his message that he wants. The results kind of speak for themselves.”

Which is what Romney seems to be doing, or trying to do.

Obama's running on fear -- attempting to scare the crap out of his base because he can't run on hope and change anymore, and he certainly can't run on results. So his only play is #waronwomen and #hesnotoneofus and the rest of the partisan/client group micro-appeals.

The guy actually running on hope -- hope for a real change in our circumstance -- is Romney.

Ahead of the Game: From the sidebar, @rdbrewer4 notes that Romney is running ahead of most other election-winners at this point in their respective cycles, including Barack Obama. At least in Gallup.

Politico/GWU Battleground Poll... Old news but might as well note it here -- Romney has moved into a 49-47 lead in the battleground states.

Unfortunately he is narrowly but persistently behind in Ohio.

There's a bit of math which says that if the national vote winner wins by 1.5% or more, there is barely any mathematical chance he can lose the electoral college.

Unfortunately, I think this is one of those cycles where this is most likely. Ohio is so stubbornly -- at least so far -- in Obama's corner, and that's a state Romney really does need. Without it, Romney would have to pick up some other difficult state. Although he can still win, even losing Ohio, if he picks up Nevada, Iowa, Colorado and New Hampshire. (Another possibility is if he wins Nevada, Iowa, Colorado and one of Maine's four EV's-- then he'd hit 270 exactly.)

You can play with the interactive map at 270towin.com to game these things out.

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posted by Ace at 01:13 PM

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