Monday, September 08, 2008

Palin(I Mean McCain), Pulls Ahead

We're are getting a slew of polling now, that completely incorporates the Republican convention in the results. The news, while somewhat temporary, is quite good for the Palin/McCain team. A sizeable bounce, which for the first time since Obama clinched the nomination, puts McCain ahead (plus 3.2% average of all polls). Some of the polling:
USA Today/Gallup (pre-conventionS numbers in brackets):

McCain 54%(45%)
Obama 44%(48%)


McCain 44%(40%)
Obama 44%(44%)

Rasmussen, slight uptick for McCain, favorable way up, appeal to independents up. Gallup Tracking poll, McCain up 5%, the first outside of MOE lead since the two nominees were chosen. CNN largely unchanged.

Some highlights from the USA Today/Gallup poll:
"The Republicans had a very successful convention and, at least initially, the selection of Sarah Palin has made a big difference," says political scientist Larry Sabato of the University of Virginia. "He's in a far better position than his people imagined he would be in at this point."

Before the convention, Republicans by 47%-39% were less enthusiastic than usual about voting. Now, they are more enthusiastic by 60%-24%, a sweeping change that narrows a key Democratic advantage. Democrats report being more enthusiastic by 67%-19%.

• Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, a national unknown before McCain chose her for the ticket 10 days ago, draws a strong reaction from voters on both sides. Now, 29% say she makes them more likely to vote for McCain, 21% less likely.

Obama's choice of Delaware Sen. Joe Biden as running mate made 14% more likely to vote for the Democrat, 7% less likely.

McCain's favorable is slightly ahead of Obama, his unfavorable slightly lower.

Some of the other polls, show the Palin factor, you could interpret the above as a wash on that score. However, just simple common sense suggests that Palin is largely responsible for the Republican bounce- does anyone think McCain would have received this uptick on his own?

My biggest concern with Palin, was that her inexperience negated McCain's talking point against Obama. However, that has been largely negated, as McCain's team has done a good job turning around the question- if McCain's VP is inexperienced, what about the Democrats P? Still an issue, but not like I envisioned.

On Palin's views, some anecedotal things I've heard, many seem prepared to support, despite questioning some of her positions. I think the media has failed to properly understand the dynamics at play here, focusing on the bread and butter, the half scandals, when really many are just seeing a fresh face, a strong woman with the same sort of star power as Obama. And, therein lies the Democrats challenge- has Palin stole some of Obama's thunder, has she closed the "enthusiasm" gap?

Big crowds, bigger buzz, that will not abate, not your typical VP selection. In that sense, I'm comfortable saying Palin is a game changer, in so much as everything is turned upside down, people recalibrating for the final push. That isn't to say anything about ultimate success, but there is no question a phenomenon is at play. And, before Democrats get in a tizzy, it is important to remember how they have benefited from the exact same superficial appeal, the rapt media and all the other tertiary stuff. The Messiah meets Wonder Woman- only in America :)

This might just be the most fascinating primary and presidential race season in American history.


Anonymous said...

yahoo, means that winded words fall short, thats good for us, Dion is not known for winded talk, harper is, well crying everyone is picking on him anyway....

Steve V said...


I'm not sure about that, because much of the Palin appeal is just as superficial as the initial fascination with Obama. Is this really a testament to substance over style, or just more style?

Dame said...

It Reflects the fact what many of us suspected maintream America is not ready To accept Obama as For representing them. and lead them. He is just not the way most americans live and think. Kind of "foreign'.while Palin is " one of them".
It is not about policies or whatever ... Just the Feel of the person .

very disappointing and unfortunate .. of Course.
I the ballot Box the guts are in Control.


Steve V said...


Someone used the analogy that Palin represents the Walmart voter, and that may be true.

Don't be despondent, the race is just beginning...

Steve V said...

ABC News/Washington Post poll, with pre-conventions standing in brackets:

McCain 49 (+4 versus last poll August 22)
Obama 47 (-2)
Undecided 3 (-1)

liberazzi said...

Sigh! I just get more and more frustrated day by day with the general voting public. 8 years, 8 long years of George Bush! Now the American public is flirting with McCain and Palin. What is wrong with them! This is not a beauty contest, that should be decided on 5 second sound bites. "You know what the difference is between a pit bull...go back to Alaska and screw off! These people that we elect to power are making serious decisions that affect our day to day lives and everyone is treating it like a fricking game, especially the media!

And now we have the real possibility of having Harper in power for 4 years! 4 years of Harper, Baird, Clement, Flaherty, Bernier and Van Loan. Are ya kidding me!

We need real action on climate change, poverty, health care etc. We do not need another 4 years of the Conservatives and the Republicans of mismanaging the economy and running deficits. Did no one learn from the mistake of allowing Harris to be in power for 8 years?

Keep allowing the angry ol white guys to keep running our countries. Been working real well so far eh? The world at large is on the verge of ecological and economic collapse and yet we'd rather vote for a "haackey mom" and some spiteful prick in a bad sweater vest, who wants to show us his nice side. Wake up!

Anonymous said...

Perhaps McCain and Palin are more "white" than Obama and Biden are "black". One pair is coming off as real and the other has a bit of fake veneer about them.

I don't think Obama's words touched Americans quite a deeply as was hoped. Palin, somehow, made a direct hit and some of that energy was reflected back to McCain.

Anonymous said...

McCain would have recieved some uptick on his own from the Convention. Not only is he a war hero, which would have been highlighted anyways, Sept. 11th happens to fall during the final stretch, which would always have favoured him.

He also received two other upticks, actually three in the cycle. The second was the saddleback forum where his ansers were better and more direct than Obama's and appealed to the Republican base that was uneasy with him before Saddleback.

The third time, was when the Republicans started to demand offshore drilling in the senate, which is going to resume and the issue will be highlighted again by republicans.

So he would have gotten an uptick with out her.

Notice I haven't mentioned the first McCain uptick. Well that was when the DNC gave Obama the nomination, also echoed when obama passed over Hillary for Biden. This would also have continued to be an issue but with the choice of any woman this would have tipped the scales.

The Palin pick by the way, was completely logical and predictable, given the three issue that have given McCain upticks in polls, pissed off women and working calss whites, Christian values, and drilling for oil.

Anyone paying attention without Obama blinders on could have seen that one a mile away, and many did.

It makes perfect sense, but McCain was going to uptick anyways.

I haven't even mentioned that Dems always drop in the polls in the fall, even when they win, even Clinton. Carter by a remarkable 25%to squeek out a victory, that's without Obama's liabilities to attack, which are massive.

But she helps for sure. So did the MSM being the idiots that they are in the US.

Steve V said...


Sorry, I don't think McCain upticked in this manner, without Palin. McCain's own campaign cancelled her return to Alaska because they want her on the road with him a few more days. They even admit he's a better campaigner with her around, the enthusiasm is off the charts. McCain himself admits her impact. The campaign seems to understand her impact, and while he would have had some boost, a McCain speech alone wouldn't have done much. Not taking anything away, but to compare Palin to Saddleback seems to miss the gravity. McCain was always in this race, but his odds have gotten considerably better since Palin showed up.

And, as the final kicker- when was the last time a presidential candidate engaged his opponents VP directly, when did the nominee feel it necessary to take a VP head on? This is usually a sideshow, Biden would engage, Obama COMPLETELY ignore.

Anonymous said...

The polls are numbers Steve. He upticked three times. You don't have to believe me but it's true, even on intrade. It's just numbers and it happened three times. It also would have continued. Dems don't do well in the fall. Americans on issues highlighted in debates are far more right than left. I'm not saying Mccain would have won without Palin or will win, but the trendis clear, even before her. look at the intrade charts. obama's is steady down, McCain's steady up for a few months now, well before Palin.

It's going to be a close election and it always was going to be a close election. Obamabots thought he was going to run away with it. That was never going to happen.

Steve V said...


He has never upticked like this on intrade, and he's never lead in the polls since the race started. Them's the facts.

I never thought Obama would run away it, in fact I've argued against getting cocky in the past. That said, this is a Democratic year.