There is a ton of data to look at, but I want to make two things abundantly clear before we get in to the guts of what’s going on across the political landscape today.
First, while the information I am about to share provides much room for optimism within the right, I ask that conservatives use caution and approach this election as the uphill battle that it still really is. As a Chicagoan who just moved to Virginia, I am all too familiar with Obama’s style of gutter politics and “anything goes” strategy of last minute political bombshells. The machine that fully controls Chicago, and as a result… Illinois, is incredibly powerful. The same style of machine has been replicated to operate the executive branch in Washington.
Do not for a second believe Obama and his ilk in D.C. will let this thing slide without a fight of epic proportion.
Second, polling data is incredibly fragile. I place national polls at the very low end of importance on the actual outcome of an election because of the electoral college. No offense to the good folks of Texas and Georgia, but your answer to a phone survey really doesn’t tell us much of anything about what will happen in Ohio or Iowa. Battleground state polls can be telling, but even then we have no way possible of knowing who will actually show up at the polls on election day. There are two entities who have a decent idea… the DNC and the RNC, and they certainly aren’t going to announce their ID data any time soon.
What polls can show us, if performed correctly, is shifts in momentum/enthusiasm among the electorate.
THE DEVASTATION REVEALED
With these two thoughts in mind, let’s now explore the absolutely devastating picture Barack Obama’s campaign is currently stuck with. We’ll start with a column by liberal blogger Andrew Sullivan.
The Pew poll is devastating, just devastating. Before the debate, Obama had a 51 – 43 lead; now, Romney has a 49 – 45 lead. That’s a simply unprecedented reversal for a candidate in October. Before Obama had leads on every policy issue and personal characteristic; now Romney leads in almost all of them. Obama’s performance gave Romney a 12 point swing! I repeat: a 12 point swing.
Romney’s favorables are above Obama’s now. Yes, you read that right. Romney’s favorables are higher than Obama’s right now. That gender gap that was Obama’s firewall? Over in one night
For the record, Sullivan is a lefty hack and a huge cheerleader for Obama. He isn’t going to come out with a column at the Daily Beast like this unless he sincerely sees room for significant concern. Is there room for concern among the left? Absolutely… and it’s not just PEW. In fact, it’s global within the polling industry.
On a national scale Obama has problems at Gallup and Rasmussen, two polls he has traditionally held a lead in for the past year. At Gallup Obama now trails by 2%. With Rasmussen he’s tied, but tanking among independent and women voters. Obama also finds himself sliding into a tie at Washington Times/Zogby, he’s tanking in the American Research Group poll, and can’t even pull out a win in a skewed lefty poll paid for by Daily KOS!
As previously mentioned, however, these are national polls and they don’t tell us a lot about what might happen in battleground states. But Obama’s camp may not want to look at battleground polls if they’re seeking information that could lead to optimism. The news locally is no better.
BATTLEGROUND STATES – MICHIGAN & PENNSYLVANIA
Michigan and Pennsylvania have, for some time now, been written off and assumed as Obama territory. Romney had initially placed significant attention in both states, but there didn’t seem to be much positive response as a result of it. I’m not suggesting Romney bailed and I don’t believe that is the case, but it’s true Romney’s campaign shifted “some” attention elsewhere. Rightfully so, at the time, because the data wasn’t showing any good signs.
That all changed post-debate. Romney is now competitive in both Michigan and Pennsylvania, according to two battleground state polls of likely voters.
A Susquehanna Polling and Research poll of 725 likely Pennsylvania voters conducted Oct. 4-6 shows Obama’s lead down to only two percentage points (47 to 45 percent), which is within the plus or minus 3.7 percentage point margin of error. Four percent of those polled said they were undecided. When they were asked who they were leaning toward, they favored Romney three to one. Factoring this in, Obama’s lead is only one percentage point.
In Michigan, two new polls also show a tight race. A poll of 1,122 respondents conducted Oct. 5 by Foster McCollum White & Associates showed a 3 percentage point advantage for Obama (49 to 46 percent with a 2.93 percent margin of error. The poll did not screen for registered or likely voters.) An Oct. 5-7 poll of 600 likely Michigan voters conducted by EPIC-MRA had similar results. Obama leads by only three percentage points (48 to 45 percent), with a plus or minus four percentage point margin of error.
It’s fine if you need to read that twice. I certainly had to, because it’s a stunning look at a major shift among the electorate in both states.
POSSIBLE BLOWOUT IN OHIO
last week I wrote an extensive post about Ohio and you should take a moment to read the bulk of it. In short, early signs in Ohio point to a significant upset by Romney over Obama. A new Ohio poll released today shows Romney shifting into the front-runner position, which confirms what I saw happening there late last week. From American Research Group (our preferred polling resource), we see Romney now up 1% in Ohio.
At this point, and considering the fact that we’re getting VERY reliable reports that a 2008 Democrat edge on early ballot requests has been cut off at the knees by a surge in Republican participation, I’m not seeing any signs stand out that suggest Obama is still out front in Ohio. In fact, every single sign I see suggests Obama is quickly losing Ohio and Romney will continue to pull ahead.
COLORADO GOING FROM TOSS-UP TO REPUBLICAN
I’m amazed that I’m saying this, but we’re pretty close to changing Colorado from toss-up to Republican in our prediction map. Romney’s ground game is pulling off a jaw-dropping operation there and it’s beginning to reflect in the polling data. Even an average of polls that includes skewed polls shows Romney now in the lead. When we look at unskewed polling data for Colorado we see a 4% lead by Romney, which is at the very top of the margin of error.
THE REST OF THE STORY
The same trend is happening in Florida, Virginia and Wisconsin. I’m beginning to think it’s highly likely Romney will take Florida, and Wisconsin is starting to look pretty good. The only total wild cards left at this point are Nevada, New Hampshire, Virginia and Iowa. I think Romney holds a slight edge in Virginia, but we’ve got a questionable Senate race that will have profund influence on the outcome at the top of the ticket. That said, I still think VA would go red if the election were held today.
As I mentioned before, our November projection map shows a lot of possible outcomes. Based on what I’m seeing today, though, I would paint the outcome like this.
- Mitt Romney – 279
- Barack Obama – 259
I believe it very possible Romney picks up Nevada, Iowa and Wisconsin. The only reason I keep them blue on a “today” vote is that I haven’t seen enough ground game and survey data to convince me Obama has completely lost grip among the three. Nevada is a very tough state to peg (See Harry Reid, 2010) and Wisconsin is the heart of the liberal movement. Both states have something at work that can help Obama in epic ways. Momentum in Colorado, Florida and Ohio, on the other hand, is quickly moving in the direction of Romney.
We’re not calling these states or pretending it’s over. The point here is to correctly suggest momentum is shifting and Obama is quickly falling to second place. Take note of this and do whatever you can to ensure that you, your friends and family, and anyone you know is voting and taking part in the elections.
This race is completely up for grabs, but at this point it’s beginning to look like it’s ours to lose.
Most pundits and analysts will readily admit that if Obama loses Ohio, it’s extraordinarily unlikely he’ll be able to squeak out a win. Odds are that if Obama loses Ohio, he’s likely to also lose Florida and Virginia. If Obama can’t win in Florida, Virginia and Ohio, how will he win in Colorado and Iowa?
He can’t. Not if he can’t win Ohio.
Ohio, in my view, is more reflective of the “middle” as a state than most others in the battleground column. Ohio is somewhat unpredictable, going to Bush in 2004 and Obama in 2008. What most media talking heads do not include in their “Ohio is Obama territory” narrative is that Ohio wasn’t a crushing win for Obama like some others were last time around. Take Michigan, for example, where Obama won by 16%. Or Wisconsin, where Obama won by 14%. Granted, Wisconsin and Michigan are more liberal in general, but also keep in mind that collective bargaining overhaul legislation was defeated in Ohio, yet survived in Wisconsin.
In other words, Ohio is all over the map and has a very diverse (politically) electorate. What happens in momentum and political energy in Ohio tends to repeat itself in other battleground states. So, not only is Ohio important in that it comes packaged with 18 electoral votes… it’s also critical because what happens there helps us understand what very well could happen in other battleground states.
There are two tracks of data that paint a troubling picture for the Obama campaign. Unskewed polling data and early voting numbers. Both are beginning to look particularly awful for Obama.
Unskewed Polling Data
American Research Group is, without question, a polling firm with a solid grasp of reality when it comes to properly sampling the electorate for polling. ARG finds an Ohio Obama lead of just 1% with a 4% margin of error (among likely voters).
While vintage media trumpets the idea that Romney is getting crushed in Ohio, reality suggests otherwise. But let’s not just take it from unskewed data. Let’s look at the RCP average of mainstream polls.
Mainstream Poll Averages
According to the Ohio average of possibly skewed mainstream polls, Obama is up by just 3.1% BEFORE post-debate polling data is obtained. It appears the average margin of error is 3%, meaning even the average of most mainstream polls has Ohio in a statistical dead tie.
And now for the most damning piece of data yet… early voting numbers.
2012 Early Voting Numbers
This is likely to cause a few heart attacks within the Obama camp.
In a remarkable reversal of fortune for President Obama in Ohio, the GOP has closed the huge gap in absentee ballot requests used by early voters that favored the Democrats and the president in 2008, setting up what one state analyst said could be a Mitt Romney blowout on Election Day.
While in 2008, 33 percent of the 1,158,301 absentee ballots went to Democrats and just 19 percent to registered Republicans, a 14-point gap, this year 29 percent are being requested by Democrats and 24 percent by Republicans, a five-point gap.
Check out the total number of votes to each candidate in 2008.
- Barack Obama – 51.5% – 2,940,044
- John McCain – 46.9% – 2,677,820
So in 2008 John McCain fell 262,224 votes short of success in Ohio. See where this gets messy for Democrats?
It’s clear already Democrats don’t have their turnout advantage of 2008. Obama has had campaign infrastructure in Ohio since 2007, is outspending Romney (that will change) in the state to date, no longer has a voter advantage based on early voting, and is in a statistical tie as it stands today.
Tell me again, how is it that Obama is in the lead in Ohio?
The following is posted on our politics blog at CampaignTrailReport.com.
If you follow news, especially news reported by vintage media, you know full well oversampling of Democrats is running wild in an effort to bend reality in the current national electorate temperature. In fact, I believe vintage media is orchestrating one of the largest voter suppression campaigns our nation has ever seen.
You see, there is much psychology involved in elections. If voters who lean toward a candidate begin feeling all hope is lost and there is no point in going to the polls, often times they will stay home. On the flip side, if supporters of a candidate sense momentum and believe their candidate is surging, they will want to be a part of the successful outcome. This often leads to higher voter turnout.
So, with this in mind, it’s important for Obama’s team members in the vintage media to portray a picture that presents Obama as the clear front-runner. Of course, this is not a new scenario. Skewed polling methods are old school and have been used in many previous election cycles. But not at the level we’re currently seeing. Vintage media has gone too far this time around. They’re over-reaching and in the process they’re showing too many of their cards.
Unlike many of our friends in modern conservative media, we refuse to trumpet skewed polling results without at least acknowledging the fact they are likely skewed. We do often times point at Real Clear Politics and their averages, but even those averages are beginning to be influenced by skewed poll results.
It has long been our policy not to link to any Politico stories. We should probably add others to that ban list, as Politico is just one of many corrupt media outlets around today. Today we’re going to make it a policy to stop considering skewed polling data, including that of the Real Clear Politics averages, in our election ratings system.
The following is a chart of the current UnskewedPolls.com average.
Let’s compare this to the RCP average showing the skewed polls.
That’s a significant difference. Of course, we can’t just make assumptions based on polls and to do so would be media malpractice. The point here is, though, that vintage media DOES make assumptions based on polls. And it does so based on skewed polling data.
We will not join in on the false narratives.
Long gone are the days where leftist media outlets are allowed to control the daily narrative unchecked. Information warfare has been waged and the conservative movement is ready for the fight. Our flagship media hub, LibertyNews.com, is just over a year old and we’re already seeing tremendous growth on all fronts. As a result of this, and at the request of our readers, we’re stepping up our game with a more in depth, investigative style insider report.
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