Thursday, August 23, 2012

The Polls and the President

The most reputable polls and their results over the last 5 days show that it is a close race with the President very slightly favored to win the election.
by Charlie Leck

Over the next two months, my readership will increase by approximately 10 times (if past history is any indicator) because of blogs such as this one. This is my attempt to sort through the current polling organizations, looking for significant clues about how the election is going. The results I indicate and how they predict the outcome of the election are based, of course, on the absence of any major impacts on the race by current events or campaign gaffs in the next 75 days. I will do such an analysis each week (on Thursday) right through the election. There will be intermittent blogs that will deal with how other people are reading the polls – especially when their readings are significantly different than mine.

National polls on the popularity of one candidate or another are not valuable. The election will be decided by the states and how they cast their Electoral College votes. It is vital to look at which states will vote for whom and how many Electoral College votes each state wields. (It is crucial, for instance, how the candidates are doing in California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas and Virginia.)

I want you to know that there are certain polls I dismiss because my past history with them found them to be unreliable markers to predict a close election. The polls I don’t watch are Rasmussen, Zogby International and Quinnipiac University.

The election at this moment
Here’s how the presidential election looks at this moment (based on my analysis of the most respected polling organizations – Gallup, NBC/Wall Street Journal, Associated Press, CNN, FOX News, Pew Research, CBS/NY Times, Bloomberg).

The President will most likely carry the following states…

New York

The following states are leaning toward President Obama….

New Jersey
New Mexico
Rhode Island

The following states are tipped only very slightly toward President Obama

New Hampshire

Completely undecided states are the following (If the President can win Florida, I believe he will be reelected to the Presidency. He can win without Florida, but he will need to pick up enough of the following states to balance Florida’s large electoral vote advantage.)…

Florida (Romney leads, very, very slightly!)
North Carolina
Virginia (Obama leads very, very slightly!)

Any state not mentioned here is either solidly in the Romney column or leaning quite heavily toward it – so much so that I don’t think the President will concentrate on any of them. The Deep South states, as usual, will vote for the most conservative candidate. It is quite simple to see where the President will concentrate his energies in the next two months.

The Paul Ryan impact
The choosing of Paul Ryan as the VP candidate has not had a large impact anywhere except in the state of Wisconsin. Ryan’s candidacy has moved Wisconsin from a completely undecided state to one slightly favoring Mr. Romney.

Polls in Virginia appear to show that Ryan has had no impact on opinion there.

The National Convention Impact
The conventions always seem to have a very immediate impact on the polls and, therefore, we’ll probably see a 1 or 2 point jump in the polls for Mr. Romney at the end of this week and the beginning of next and then the same for President Obama in the week following.

No Prediction
Obviously, the result of this election cannot be predicted at the moment. I’ll make this prediction, however: The Romney campaign will unleash an unprecedented amount of money on campaign advertising in the next month. You are about to see the full impact on what the U.S. Supreme Court did for us in its Citizens United decision.

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