Monthly Archives: August 2012

Florida is Key for Romney

The selection of Tampa for this year’s Convention was no accident by the Republican National Committee and then-Chairman Michael Steele.  For all Steele’s missteps, placing the Convention in this vital state for Romney was a strategically brilliant move which contrasts greatly with the embarrassment going on with the Democrats in North Carolina were they can’t even name the stadium they are holding their rallies due to special interest control over their party (it’s Bank of America Stadium for those who don’t know). The Wall Street Journal looks at a state Barack Obama would like to win but Mitt Romney must win:

If Mitt Romney is to win the presidency, he probably needs to win Florida. To that end, his campaign has set out this week to make sure the state’s voters feel a lot more appreciated than its delegates. The convention is peppered with high-profile Floridians as speakers, including Sen. Marco Rubio, former Gov. Jeb Bush and Attorney General Pam Bondi. After the convention wraps up, Mr. Romney and his running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, are set to head to Lakeland, just east of here, for a Florida “farewell” rally Friday. The campaign also will deploy a host of surrogates in coming weeks to barnstorm the state. The race in Florida currently is a dead heat. The Real Clear Politics average of state polls shows President Barack Obama leading the former Massachusetts governor by 1%.

Romney’s advantage

In Mr. Romney’s favor are a sluggish economy and higher-than-average unemployment, both of which have put Floridians in a sour mood and possibly amenable to change. The housing market continues to hurt. And Republicans dominate the state, holding the governorship, both houses of the legislature and every statewide office but one.

Vaunted (and Expensive) Obama ground game

To counter that, the Obama campaign has been organizing for almost a year and a half and has 73 offices in the state. The president also is benefiting from long-term demographic changes that are making Florida more racially and ethnically diverse.

Demographics play a major role

In 1996, the state’s registered voters were 81% white, 10% black and 7% “other”—primarily Hispanic. Today, registered voters are 68% white, 13% black and 14% Hispanic. The Hispanic growth has been fueled largely by non-Cuban Latinos, who tilt Democratic. The totals don’t equal 100% due to “unknown” and similar answers by voters.

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Romney-Ryan Rally in Lakeland, Florida Friday (Aug 31) 9:30am

Following the pomp and parties of the Republican National Convention, Lakeland, Florida will kick-off the race to the finish line with e send-off rally featuring both Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan:

Join us for an RNC Farewell Victory Rally!

When: August 31, 2012 – 7:30am
Where: Flight Level Aviation, Lakeland Linder Regional Airport, 3440 Airfield Drive West, Lakeland, FL

You’re Invited to a Republican National Convention Farewell Victory Rally with Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan and the Republican Team!
To RSVP and get your ticket, please click here.

All attendees will go through airport-like security and should bring as few personal items as possible. No bags, sharp objects, umbrellas, liquids, or signs will be allowed in the venue. Cameras are permitted.

Questions: (813) 644-2493 or TeamFL@mittromney.com; For Important Campaign Updates: Text FL to GOMITT (466488)

Am I Going to Have to Blog Connecticut?

The second poll in a week shows Mitt Romney with a single-digit deficit in Connecticut — a state Barack Obama won by 23 points in 2008:

President Barack Obama holds a narrow 52 – 45 percent lead over Gov. Mitt Romney, his Republican challenger, among Connecticut likely voters. Twelve percent of Obama voters and 12 percent of Romney backers say they might change their mind. The gender gap is yawning with women backing Obama 59 – 38 percent while men back Romney 53 – 45 percent. Independent voters are divided with 49 percent for Romney and 47 percent for Obama. Obama leads among all income groups except for a 49 – 49 percent split among voters making more than $100,000 per year. Voters in all age groups back the president.

Obama gets a 51 – 46 percent favorability while Romney has a negative 41 – 44 percent. Vice President Joseph Biden gets a negative 38 – 43 percent favorability, compared to a negative 30 – 33 percent for U.S. Rep. Paul Ryan. Another 37 percent don’t know enough about Romney’s running mate to form an opinion. Connecticut voters say 43 – 35 percent that Biden is qualified to be president, compared to 29 – 26 percent, with 44 percent undecided, for Ryan.

The economy will be “extremely important” to their presidential vote, 58 percent of voters say, higher than any other issue. Medicare will be “extremely important,” 41 percent say. Romney would do a better job on the economy, Connecticut voters say 49 – 44 percent. Obama would be better on Medicare, voters say 51 – 41 percent.

“Although President Barack Obama is ahead of Gov. Mitt Romney, his 7-point lead is a far cry from his 23-point victory in 2008 over John McCain. We shouldn’t, however, expect to see the candidates campaigning in Connecticut, which hasn’t voted for a Republican since 1988,” Dr. Schwartz said. From August 22 – 26, Quinnipiac University surveyed 1,472 likely voters with a margin of error of +/- 2.6 percentage points. Live interviewers call landlines and cell phones.

The party ID in the poll was fair at D +11.  In 2008 the party ID in Connecticut was D +16 and in 2004 it was D +7.

A Video Look at the Battleground State of Florida

How the Obama Campaign Sees the State of the Race — Must Read

Mark Halperin gets the inside scoop on the current thinking from the Obama campaign on how the Presidential race is shaping up. There is so much packed into his post, read and study the entire thing. Previously Halperin offered what I called the Six Deadly Sins of the Obama Campaign. We see many of those sins remaining but plenty more insights to be mindful of:

The Obamans still have their share of concerns about the overall environment and the various elements that could yet go wrong. And, yes, there is polling, such as Monday’s Washington Post/ABC News survey and a few state polls that show the race tight or tightening and the President below the key fifty-percent marker. Nevertheless, the current reasons for the Obama campaign confidence are the same as they were in early spring—appropriate in a race that has been marked by astonishing overall stability beneath the daily roiling chaos.

  • Members of team Obama still believe the electoral college favors them

This may simply be arrogance, naivete or false bravado.  For the Obama camp to believe this they must be counting states in their favor which are far more competitive than they believe.  Few Battleground state polls say Obama has moved the needle meaningfully in his favor with the exception of Pennsylvania.  And that was a state Romney had no intention of competing in until a chorus of critics pleaded for him to enter the sometimes competitive but never flipping blue state. In the other Battleground States only Michigan (+2), New Hampshire (+3.5) and Nevada (+4.2) is Obama leading by more than 1% based on the current Real Clear Politics averages.

  • They see little or no prospect that the opposition can make significant gains with Hispanics, single women, or young voters

This belief is predicated on the notion these voters will show up on election day when historically 2 of those groups don’t vote.  How many polls do they need to see saying the exact same thing: Much of Obama’s 2008 coalition has lost their enthusiasm for Obama. Obama may have a chance to change the narrative with Hispanics enough to recreate some of the 2008 magic but young voters are both breaking closer to Romney than they did for McCain and far more likely to return to historic trends in their electorate representations.  I doubt highly Obama can move the needle with this group.

  • They think Medicare and tax cuts for the wealthy are untrumpable trump cards

Myopic. Democrats have demagogued Republicans for years with these trump cards but the ground is shifting out from under their feet on the Medicare issue. Poll after poll shows a) Seniors are growing more Republican, and b) Romney-Ryan is winning the Medicare argument in this election.

  • They view Romney as a weak candidate, whose resume and background leave him vulnerable to populist attack

The Obama campaign undermines themselves in this same post later when they grudgingly give Romney credit for being better than they thought. Here is what I wrote previously on this deadly sin: The Art of War, Respectful Preparation: ‘He who exercises no forethought but makes light of his opponents is sure to be captured by them.’ That is, never underestimate your opponent. There is a well known story about how in December of 1991 George HW Bush was heard laughingly talking about the chances America would elect some backwoods Governor from a poor state like Arkansas.  I think we know how that one ended.

  • They think their candidate’s skills and likeability are far too powerful to derail

Two comments from my earlier write up argue against this position quite well:

  1. Napoleon, supreme egoist that he was, ignored the significance of the omens until he and his host were completely and irrevocably committed to an undertaking that was doomed. Never did the gods punish hubris more severely.
    –M. de Fezensac, The Russian Campaign, 1812
  2. Amazingly I googled “messianic complex” with no names and on the first page of hits were websites talking about Obama.  Right-wing nut websites?  No. Mother Jones and Crooks and Liars, two very established Left-wing websites complaining of Obama faithful in the 2008 primary. So this phenomenon is nothing new. But this is being applied to a politician who has NEVER been in a challenging election.  The closest thing to a legitimate contender was his first run for Congress against Bobby Rush … where he lost! For anyone who wants to cite his primary victory over Hillary Clinton, there are a few videos you should check out. Elections are a lot harder without a sycophantic media as the Obama campaign is currently finding out.

Romney’s Play for Michigan

Michigan is one of the more unusual Battleground States this year.  Few people put it in the toss-up category at the start of the campaign, MSNBC (I know) refuses to include it among its swing states and even “conservative” (I know) Joe Scarborough calls the state “fool’s gold” the same way the GOP repeatedly competes fro Pennsylvania only to realize late in the game they wasted time and money. Marc Thiessen takes some time to look at Michigan and Romney’s efforts to convert this once deep blue state that is a deep shade of purple in 2012:

It is no surprise that in the run-up to this week’s Republican National Convention, Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan made their first joint campaign appearance in the key battleground state of Ohio. More interesting is that Romney and Ryan took their pre-convention tour to a Midwestern state that went for Barack Obama by double digits in 2008: Michigan.

No GOP presidential candidate has carried Michigan in almost a ­quarter-century, and four years ago Obama won here in a 16-point landslide. This November, however, Romney sees Michigan as ripe for a pickup.

Most polls show Obama leading here narrowly, but Romney strategists point out that their man is nearly tied with the president before the TV ad war between the campaigns has even begun. Michigan is one of 11 states where the Romney campaign is fully staffed with a battleground footprint and money flowing in.

A number of factors suggest that Romney has a shot in Michigan. For one thing, since Obama’s 2008 victory, Michigan voters put the House in GOP hands and have elected a Republican governor, Rick Snyder, who campaigned (like Romney) on his experience in the private sector. Since taking office, Snyder has erased a $1.5 billion budget deficit and cut corporate taxes by $1 billion a year — and Michigan’s unemployment rate dropped from over 13 percent in 2010 to 8.6 percent in June. If Michigan voters are comfortable enough to put a chief executive in charge in Lansing, it stands to reason they would also put a chief executive in charge in Washington.Despite the recent progress, Michigan is not yet out of the woods economically. The state is still in its 48th straight month of above-8-percent unemployment and has one of the highest foreclosure rates in the nation.

The Romney campaign has also been highlighting two other issues that have particular resonance in Michigan. One is the administration’s contraception and abortifacient mandate, which hurts the president with the socially conservative Reagan Democrats in such places as Macomb County. There are 2.4 million Catholic voters in Michigan, and Obama’s assault on religious liberty has alienated many of them. In May, the Michigan Catholic Conference filed suit against the Obama administration over the Health and Human Services mandate — and Catholic priests will be preaching against it in parishes across the state between now and Election Day. Look for Romney to underscore his opposition to the HHS mandate — and his endorsement by Lech Walesa— with these Catholic voters, many of whom are of Polish and Ukrainian descent.

The second issue is welfare reform. Welfare fraud is fresh on people’s minds here, thanks to the news of a Detroit area woman who was recently caught continuing to collect benefits despite winning a $1 million state lottery prize. Michiganders have a strong work ethic and remain justly proud of their state’s role as a pioneer of welfare reform in the 1990s. The charge that Obama is gutting welfare reform hits a nerve here.

For these and other reasons, some Michigan Democrats are increasingly worried that Obama may be taking victory here for granted.

Michigan All Tied Up 47 – 47

Consistent with what I blogged earlier, it is political punditry malpractice to not include Michigan among the Battlegrounds. Romney is unquestionably competing in the state, he has decades long ties to the state and  Real Clear Politics has the average margin at +3.3%.  Now Mitchell Research has its fourth poll in the state showing Michigan as competitive as ever with both candidates deadlocked at 47.  Previous Mitchell Research polls has Obama up +1 in June, Romney up +1 in July and Obama up +5 in mid-August.

Michigan is proving once gain to be a battle ground state. In the most recent poll, Romney and Obama are tied at 47% with 3% voting for someone else and 3% undecided.  The automated telephone survey of 1277 likely voters in the November General Election was conducted Thursday, August 23, 2012 and has a Margin of Error + or – 2.74% at the 95% level of confidence.

“Romney has solidified his lead with Republicans and has moved back into a tie with Obama as a result of a big shift in men voters towards his candidacy. He has also gained ground with independent voters. Only ten days ago, he trailed with ticket splitters by 6% (46%-40%). Now, Romney leads with independents by 8%. There is also reason to believe that the addition of Paul Ryan to the ticket helps Romney. When the vice presidential candidates are added to a trial ballot question, Romney/Ryan leads Obama/Biden by 1% (46%-45%). When asked if Congressman Ryan’s vice presidential candidacy makes them more or less likely to vote for Romney, 53% say it makes them more likely and 47% less likely,” Steve Mitchell, Chairman of Mitchell Research & Communications, Inc. said.

The gender gap continues to be significant. Obama’s 13% lead with women remains identical to what it was 10 day ago (54%-41%). The big change is with men where Romney has increased his 3% lead (48%-45%) ten days ago to 14% (53%-39%) now.  The biggest change is with independents. In this poll, Romney has retaken the lead with the pivotal independent voters (46%-38%). He led by 10% with ticket splitters in July (44%-34%), but trailed with them by 6% (46%-40%) ten days ago. In June, Romney led (43%-38%). The percentage of voters that identify themselves as Independents is down to 13% from 16% in the last two surveys.

For President Percent
Barack Obama 47
Mitt Romney 47
Other 3
Undecided 3

Romney +1 Nationally Among Registered Voters — ABC/Washington Post

Instant Update: Ha! I just found out there is a Likely Voter screen and Romney is leading that one by 2 (49 to 47) yet both the Post and ABC put the less reliable Registered Voter result in their headlines because that would look better for Obama. The Post didn’t even mention the Likely Voter result.

I don’t normally blog nationally polls (since this is a Battleground State blog) unless there is something unusual in the survey — usually to the detriment to Republicans.  Three things, however, caught my attention in today’s ABC News-Washington Post poll:

  1. Romney is leading in a major national poll still using registered voters which means you can add between 2-4 points to Romney’s margin
  2. News agencies tout these releases for days to drum up interest in the newsworthiness of their polls. But  I didn’t hear a peep about this one.  Was it because Romney is leading? I don’t know but it is quite curious
  3. The media water-carrying on social issues on behalf of the President has had zero impact on voters.  Overwhelmingly they care about the economy and have poor ratings for Obama in that regard

Both of these fit perfectly into the thesis of my earlier post that both the Obama campaign and his shills in the media know that Obama is already losing no matter how many biased polls they release. Today’s poll dropped with no fanfare further cocooning the media in their pro-Obama echo chamber.

Additionally, the internals among registered voters for Obama in this poll are horrible:

  • The party ID was D +9 (Dem 31, Rep 22, Ind 39, Other/Don’t Know 9) same as their July dead heat poll, so again a huge over-sampling of Democrats. They really may be sampling the DNC by October to find a competitive poll
  • 56% disapprove of his handling on the economy
  • 85% say the economy is not good
  • A plurality support Romney over Obama on handling Medicare 45 to 42
  • A plurality support the Ryan Budget and a strong majority approve of the Ryan pick as VP
  • Obama is identified as a Big Government guy by 73% whereas the registered voters surveyed are small government types 59% to 35%
  • Right track/Wrong track is 29/69
  • The Tea Party is viewed favorably by 46% vs 43% unfavorable

All of which helps explain much of the strangely desperate maneuvers and lashing out by the Obama campaign:

A new Washington Post-ABC News poll shows Romney at 47 percent among registered voters and Obama at 46 percent — barely changed from the deadlocked contest in early July. The findings continue a months-long pattern, with neither the incumbent nor the challenger able to sustain clear momentum, despite airing hundreds of millions of dollars in television ads — most of them negative — and exchanging some of the harshest early rhetoric seen in a modern presidential campaign.

Romney’s selection of Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) as his running mate also did not fundamentally reshape the race, although the GOP’s conservative base has grown more enthusiastic about the ticket — but no more so about the chances of beating Obama in November.

Enthusiasm — or a lack thereof — will be on display as Republicans and Democrats hold their conventions over the next two weeks. The two parties will make their pitches to an electorate stuck in a deeply pessimistic mood. More than eight in 10 give the economy negative marks and nearly seven in 10 see the country as seriously off track — an assessment that has not changed significantly all year.

The Post-ABC survey highlights the dominance of the economy as an issue in the 2012 election. Seventy-two percent of voters say the president’s handling of the economy will be a “major factor” in their vote this November.

Fewer voters place great significance on other issues that have roiled the campaign, including newly minted GOP vice presidential candidate’s plan to restructure Medicare, differences between the parties on women’s issues and Romney’s handling of his tax returns.

Obama continues to get more negative reviews than positive ones for his handling of the economy, and there is tepid confidence that the economy would get back on track in a second Obama term. Majorities have disapproved of how Obama is dealing with issue No. 1 for more than two years, although his numbers have not further deteriorated, despite a string of weak jobs reports leading into the fall campaign season.

Romney now holds a slim, seven-point edge among registered voters when it comes to handling the economy, even as there is also limited faith that things would quickly get better if he was to win. Obama counters with an equivalent advantage over Romney when it comes to who is seen as having a better understanding the financial problems people are facing.

Revised Republican National Convention Schedule

Republican officials today released a revised convention-week schedule. Changes in the schedule are the result of the convention’s decision postpone the Monday, August 27 sessions due to weather-related concerns. The revised schedule is as follows:

Monday, August 27, 2012

2:00 p.m.

  • Chairman of the RNC Reince Priebus
  • Call to Order/Start Debt Clocks

2:10 p.m.

  • Announcement of Recess

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

2:00 p.m.

  • Chairman of the RNC Reince Priebus
  • Color Guard Knights of Columbus
  • Pledge of Allegiance by Former Governor Tim Babcock (MT)/ Tom Hogan (FL)
  • National Anthem sung by Philip Alongi
  • Invocation by Rabbi Meir Soloveichik
  • Opening procedural steps, appointment of convention committees
  • Welcoming remarks, and House and Senate candidates and RNC auxiliaries
  • RNC Chairman Priebus
  • RNC Co-Chairman Sharon Day
  • Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn
  • Convention Chief Executive Officer William Harris
  • Chairman of Tampa Bay Host Committee Al Austin
  • Republican Congressional Candidates
  • State Delegate Barbara Comstock (VA)
  • Representative Tim Griffin (AR)
  • Republican Senate Candidates
  • Republican National Committee auxiliaries
  • Consideration of convention committee reports
  • RNC Chairman Reince Priebus
  • Committee on Credentials Chairman Mike Duncan
  • Committee on Permanent Organization Chairwoman Zoraida Fonalledas
  • Convention Permanent Chairman Speaker John Boehner, Presiding
  • Official Convention Photograph
  • Committee on Rules Chairman John Sununu
  • Committee on Resolutions Chairman Governor Bob McDonnell
  • Committee on Resolutions Co-Chairman U.S. Senator John Hoeven
  • Committee on Resolutions Co-Chairman U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn
  • Roll Call for Nomination of President of the United States
  • Roll Call for Nomination of Vice President of the United States

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How Did Each Party Get its Mascot?

Here is a quick two-and-a-half minute video explaining how the Republican elephant and Democrat donkey each came to symbolize their parties:

“It Ain’t Right”

Clearly the Romney campaign isn’t shrinking from the Medicare fight:

A television advertisement released by Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign on the eve of the GOP convention is the fifth in the past two weeks focused on Medicare, the health care entitlement program for seniors. President Barack Obama and Romney have sparred over their plans for the program in a series of ads – primarily from the Republican challenger – and on the campaign trail. Like the other spots, this ad includes a claim that, “As president, Barack Obama cut $700 billion from Medicare to pay for Obamacare.”

The claim cites a report from the Congressional Budget Office that shows repeal of the president’s health care law would mean an additional $716 billion in spending on the program. Romney and other Republicans have argued that the health reform law therefore cut $716 billion from Medicare.

Will Voter Affiliation Carry Florida, Ohio and Virginia for Romney?

Josh Bernstein on Examiner.com picks up on the voter registration and affiliation changes since 2008 and posits three of the biggest Battleground States will break for Mitt Romney due to strong dissatisfaction with Democrats.  He has some pretty string anti-Obama views but despite the charged language his data is very interesting.  All three states were very close (below Obama’s national margin) and all three have troubling trends for the Obama campaign:

Florida, Ohio, and Virginia all voted for Barack Obama in 2008. The official results according to final election statistics were 50 to 48 in Florida, 51 to 47 in Ohio, and 52 to 46 in Virginia.

Florida — 2-point win for Obama in 2008

  • In 2008 Florida Democrats out numbered Republicans by roughly 700,000; 4.8 million to 4.1 million. The undeclared/unaffiliated and independent voters measured 2.5 million.
  • As of June 2012 Republicans are still sitting at 4.1 million, however Democrats now register 4.5 million, and Independents now are up to 2.7 million.
  • So what happened was Republicans stayed the same, Democrats lost 300,000, and Independents gained 200,000. That is half a million voters in a swing state that have changed their party affiliation.

Ohio — 4-point win for Obama in 2008

  • In Ohio, voters are not required to give a party affiliation when they register to vote.
  • In 2008 according to Ohio Secretary of State Jon Husted’s website, Democrats out numbered Republicans by 174,000, 1.48 million to 1.30 million. The unaffiliated voters totaled 5.1 million.
  • In 2012, Democrats went from 1.48 million down to 827,000. That is a loss of 653,000. Republicans went from 1.3 million down to 894,000. That is a loss of 412,000.
  • The most dramatic change however was in unaffiliated voters. This segment of voters rose from 5.1 million to 6.3 million. That is an increase of 1.2 million more unaffiliated voters in the Buckeye state.
  • This was a cataclysmic shift away from the two major parties, although a larger shift away from the Democrats.
  • This gives Republicans the advantage in two distinct ways. First, their are now 67,000 more registered Republicans than their are Democrats. Second, more voters decided to leave the Democrat Party in favor of being unaffiliated/undeclared or Independent.

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Ohio Dead Heat 45 to 45 — Columbus Dispatch

Ranking even with Virginia, Ohio holds the key to this year’s election and polls have been stubbornly in Obama’s favor.  The latest survey from The Columbus Dispatch, however,  shows the race for Ohio’s 18 electoral votes perfectly tied. Interestingly the Senate race in the state is also hotly with Josh Mandel also tied with Sherrod Brown.  This type of competitiveness should help Romney with Mandel gamely championing the Republican causes while Romney stumps nationwide:

The closest Dispatch Poll in modern history shows the races for president and U.S. Senate in a dead heat in battleground Ohio. For the record, Republican Mitt Romney holds a “lead” of 0.22 percentage point over President Barack Obama. That’s a mere 2 votes out of more than 1,730 cast for president in the mail poll. By comparison, Sen. Sherrod Brown has a landslide going over GOP state Treasurer Josh Mandel with a margin of 0.87 point. That’s a whopping 15-ballot bulge. The poll’s margin of error is plus or minus 2.1 percentage points, so the takeaway is that the presidential matchup is tied at 45 percent and the Senate struggle at 44 percent among likely voters.

As the intense and expensive presidential campaign rounds the corner through two weeks of political conventions and heads for the fall home stretch, the candidates must try to win over the 10 percent of Ohio voters who remain undecided. Many are in groups already being carried easily by Romney: Protestants, nonunion households, residents of southeastern Ohio. Others, however, are in the demographics where Obama is prevailing, such as low-income households. And nearly half the undecided voters said they voted for Obama in 2008. In the Senate race, 12 percent of voters haven’t yet made up their minds.

The survey bears out the observation of many party leaders and political consultants: Central Ohio is the heart of this presidential war zone this year. The Columbus media market, won narrowly by Obama four years ago, is just as deadlocked as the statewide poll. Signs of voter unhappiness are sprinkled throughout the poll. Sixty-two percent say the country is on the wrong track. A total of 55 percent — including 1 out of 7 Obama supporters — say the president’s performance since taking office has been worse than they hoped.

Connecting the Dots — Obama is Likely Losing Already

When I dig deeper in polls where President Obama is leading by a slim margin, often times I come away with the conclusion that Mitt Romney more than likely is leading in those same polls by a slim margin due to the over-sampling of Democrats, the nature of the poll (registered voters) and some similar anomaly I do not expect to occur this November like record turnouts of minorities.  At the same time, the behavior out of the Obama campaign like classlessly trying to upstage the GOP convention with Biden in Tampa and Obama hitting Battleground States — completely in contravention to the long standing tradition to give each party its moment — speaks more towards the desperation of a losing campaign than the confidence of a campaign leading most polls. Ed Driscoll over at Pajamas Media blogged about John Nolte over at media watchdog Big Journalism and Erick Erickson at Red State who pieced together numerous anecdotal incidents to come to the same conclusion, Barack Obama is probably already losing this election and both he and his campaign knows this.  These were the findings:

  • Crowd sizes at Obama rallies are far smaller than they were in 2008 and even smaller then the campaign designs
  • Media coverage of Obama and Romney never gives crowd sizes in an effort to avoid the negative contrast for Obama
  • The documentary 2016: Obama’s America about Obama’s  early life shaping his post-America views is #3 in the country but you won’t hear anything in the press unless you look for it
  • The shrillness of the Obama campaign is more like a campaign so far behind and so in fear of losing, they feel they have nothing to lose. From “felon” to “chains” to “Mitt killed my wife”
  • When the unemployment rate increases, the media tells us that’s a good thing.
  • When the economy (GDP) shrinks from 4.1 to 1.5%, the media still call it “the recovery.”
  • When an idiot in Missouri says something stupid about rape and abortion, the media launches into a week-long narrative accusing Republicans of being soft on rape.
  • No mention that Obama supports infanticide. Romney opposes abortion except in cases of rape, incest and when the mother’s life is at risk. Yesterday CNN released a poll showing 62% of the American people agree with Romney and only 32% with Obama.
  • From Mark Halperin, to Jake Tapper, to Chuck Todd, more journalists are actually now admitting just how pliable the media is when it comes to Barack Obama’s spin
  • All week long, as the economy deteriorates, most every anchor at most every news outlet, most every editorialist in most every paper, and most every “centrist” and liberal pundit has been pointing out the GOP’s extremist abortion position.
  • Few, if any, have pointed out that Mitt Romney’s position on abortion is actually more mainstream than Barack Obama’s.
  • Few, if any, have wanted to go beyond Politifact’s ham-handed cover for Obama on infanticide and get into what Barack Obama actually said in 2002. Hear him come out for infanticide yourself right here. Remember, the media is hiding behind the left-leaning Politifact (and yes, it does lean left) to avoid having to deal with this.
  • They are doing it for the exact same reason Joe Biden is claiming the GOP will put black people back in chains and why Barack Obama would rather talk about uteri than jobs ? they all know Barack Obama is losing this thing.

Obama +9 in Pennsylvania — Philadelphia Inquirer

More and more this state looks like a bridge too far for Mitt Romney in the 2012 election.  The GOP continues to make strides in the state but it would have helped for a more popular GOP Governor in the state house than what we have today.  The Philadelphia Inquirere released a new poll showing President Obama with a sizable 9-point lead in Pennsylvania.  I think the race is probably closer than that but not as competitive as I expected it to be:

Ten weeks before the election, a voter poll commissioned by The Inquirer finds President Obama leading Republican rival Mitt Romney by a significant margin in Pennsylvania, raising the question of whether the Keystone State is up for grabs on Nov. 6. The Inquirer Pennsylvania Poll, led by a bipartisan team of top political analysts, concluded that if the election were held now, Obama would win the state by nine percentage points – 51-42 – with 7 percent of voters undecided.

The telephone survey of 601 likely voters, conducted from Tuesday through Thursday, had a statistical margin of error of plus or minus 4 percent. The results, which include firmly committed supporters and those leaning toward one candidate or the other, are comparable to those of other recent polls, including one released Thursday by Muhlenberg College, which also had Obama leading by nine points in the state.

Jeffrey Plaut of Global Strategy Group, a Democratic polling firm, said the results may indicate Pennsylvania has lost some of its “swingy-ness.” He said Friday that Democrats would have to fail to turn out their base voters to “put the state in play.” His survey partner, Republican Adam Geller of National Research Inc., said Romney clearly was behind in the state. But he said Obama’s current lead could be less – perhaps six, five, or four points – in light of the margin of error and the proven tendency of undecided voters ultimately to vote against incumbents. “Maybe if Romney decided to spend more time and resources in the state of Pennsylvania, the state certainly could be in play,” Geller said.

Barely half of poll respondents approved of the job Obama has done as president, a finding that Romney could build on, Geller said. He said he expected the race to tighten. But only about four in 10 respondents had a favorable view of Romney, who, starting with this week’s Republican National Convention, must burnish a personal image tarnished by a summer’s worth of negative Obama ads.

Quick Hits

I expect slow news ahead of the convention so blogging may reflect that.  Below are a few interesting items though:

Michael Barone reflects on the specifics from the many national conventions he has attended.  Great read.

National Journal looks at Nevada and Hispanic voters on the fence this election due to the all too slow  economic recovery

President Obama gives a long interview with the Associated Press showing some different rhetoric that we see on the stump

A large swath of voters are still undecided and remain unexcited despite the unprecedented early spending in this election cycle

 

Watch Romney and Ryan Live in Powell, Ohio

Here is the link to a live feed of the campaign rally in Ohio:

Live Feed Link.

Here is a crowd shot from Joy Lin, a homemade message on a shit at the Romney-Ryan Rally from Chris Laible, and a crowd shot from Rachel Streitfeld:

If You Found This Blog Looking for Comments on Romney’s Birth Certificate Joke or Todd Akin’s Comments, Stop Reading

I care about what will win this Presidential election. — and that’s the 10 Battleground States identified in my first post.  Neither Romney’s joke nor Akin’s comments will win this elections.

Do you know who makes Obama birth certificate jokes?  Barack Obama. And nobody cares.

However, the reaction of the two groups in attendance at the Romney event tells you everything you need to know about this completely irrelevant joke:

@JanCBS: At Romney event, 2 reactions to his birth certificate joke: reporters gasped & crowd of thousands laughed and cheered.”

Yes, the pro-Obama media gasped while the audience laughed.  End of story.  But not if The One is in trouble.

Obama himself and his campaign can make dog jokes about Romney’s travel habits and the media laughs right along with him. The Obama campaign can call Romney a felon for no reason and it is unchallenged by the lapdogs in the media. Romney surrogates can run an ad that alleges Romney KILLED a woman and the media definitely doesn’t gasp.  They gentle reprove Obama surrogates speaking more out of sadness than anger.

Romney’s joke is only a topic of inside the Beltway bubble because:

  1. It is late August and political news is slow
  2. It is not often Romney shows his less-serious side in a manner the media can trumpet (he’s quirky funny not laugh-out-loud funny)
  3. The media wants Obama to win.

The third point we all know so I don’t care to get riled up over nor do I care to take their bait.

The only thing that matters in this election is the state of the economy and jobs.  Every single polls says that with overwhelming certainty. All this crap is irrelevant. 8.3% unemployment is what matters. Anemic growth driving the country closer to a recession is what matters.  And who has a better plan to address these concerns?  Every poll says Romney so the compliant media will run with any story that helps the Obama campaign distract from Obama’s record on the issues that matter to the public.

Phony outrage over a tweak at The One or relentlessly covering an issue (Akin) that doesn’t even register as an area of concern in any poll is simply more ways for the media to audition for jobs in an Obama Administration should he win.

I don’t care and neither should you.

Virginia Tied 47 – 47 — Rasmussen Reports

Rasmussen Reports has the latest results from Virginia with a dead heat between Romney and Obama at 47 to 47. This is a state that will likely go down to the wire with each campaign unloading untold millions in TV ads before it’s all said and done:

Just days before Republicans make Mitt Romney’s candidacy official, he and President Obama are running dead even in the critical battleground state of Virginia. The latest Rasmussen Reports telephone survey of Likely Voters in Virginia shows Romney and Obama each with 47% support. Three percent (3%) prefer some other candidate in the race, and another three percent (3%) are undecided. The survey of 500 Likely Voters in Virginia was conducted on August 23, 2012 by Rasmussen Reports. The margin of sampling error is +/- 4.5 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

For President Percent
Barack Obama 47
Mitt Romney 47
Other 3
Undecided 3

Mitt Romney: What I Learned at Bain Capital

In what I suspect is a preview of his convention speech, Mitt Romney wrote an op-ed today in the Wall street Journal talking about his time at Bain Capital.  Here are my take-aways:

  • Bain succeeded by growing and fixing companies. Staples is one of many businesses Romney and Bain helped create and expand
  • His Bain experience prepared him to turn around the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City
  • He applied those same experiences as governor of Massachusetts to turn a budget deficit into a surplus and reduce our unemployment rate to 4.7%
  • For a business to succeed it requires a talented team, a good business plan and capital to execute it
  • He would apply these lessons in the White house to make it easier for entrepreneurs and small businesses to get the investment dollars they need to grow by:
  1. reducing and simplifying taxes
  2. replacing Obamacare with real health-care reform that contains costs and improves care
  3. stemming the flood of new regulations that are tying small businesses in knots
  • Romney’s faith in people, not government, is at the foundation of his plan to strengthen America’s middle class
  • Innovation is essential to the competitiveness of U.S. manufacturing
  • Unfair trade practices are harming American workers
  • When Romney sees a problem, he runs toward it or it will only get worse
  • Romney knows what it takes to turn around difficult situations. He will put that experience to work, to get our economy back on track, create jobs, strengthen the middle class and lay the groundwork for America’s increased competitiveness in the world

Battleground State Strategizing

The Wall Street Journal has a good look at the state of play across the Battlegrounds and finds some interesting campaign maneuvering:

The presidential candidates are being forced to adjust assumptions about the path to victory as voter sentiments shift in some of the battleground states that are important to winning a majority in the Electoral College. In a heartening development for Republican challenger Mitt Romney, Wisconsin is now a tossup, recent polls show, forcing President Barack Obama to consider investing in a state that wasn’t considered to be in play.

At the same time, Republicans hold a lead in opinion polling in North Carolina, a state that Mr. Obama narrowly carried in 2008. That shift complicates one of a handful of routes to re-election the Obama campaign has laid out, relying on victories in the mid-Atlantic states of North Carolina and Virginia. Stronger showings by Mr. Romney in opinion polls of Colorado also suggest a narrowing of Mr. Obama’s prospects for another path to victory he had laid out, which entails winning the Western swing states of Colorado, Nevada and New Mexico.

Benefiting Mr. Obama, several polls show the president retaining a lead in two voter-rich states, Ohio and Virginia. Should Mr. Obama carry those states, Mr. Romney would be hard pressed to win the White House without capturing one of two states that Democrats have consistently won since 1992: Pennsylvania and Michigan. Overall, polling shows that Mr. Obama continues to hold a lead in the Electoral College at this point.

Recent travel and ad buys show the candidates trying to expand the electoral map to the greatest extent possible for themselves, while closing off viable paths to the magic number of 270 electoral votes for their opponents. Mr. Romney on Thursday talked about his energy plan in New Mexico, a state that Mr. Obama won last time around and that figures into his Western strategy. Recent surveys show Mr. Obama with a significant lead there, suggesting that the state’s role as a battleground is receding. For his part, Mr. Obama is currently devoting a huge chunk of time to Iowa, where the race looks to be close. The president spent three days there last week on a bus trip and plans to return next week as part of a college tour.

For the Obama campaign, the focus on Iowa serves two purposes. One of the Obama campaign’s paths to an Electoral College win envisions victories in both Ohio and Iowa. But success in Iowa would also help to foil a strategy developed by the Romney campaign. Romney strategists call it the “Granite Hawkeye” path, envisioning wins in Florida, North Carolina, Virginia, Ohio, New Hampshire and Iowa.

“If you had said a year ago that Wisconsin, Nevada, New Hampshire and Colorado would all in be play, that we would have a $60 million cash advantage on the president, and that we would be within the margin of error in every important state, that would have been as good as it gets,” Mr. Beeson said. “And that’s where we are.”

In assessing the landscape, the nonpartisan Cook Political Report said that Mr. Obama can count on winning 17 states, with 201 electoral votes, while Mr. Romney’s standing is solid in 23 states, with 191 votes. That leaves 11 battlegrounds where the campaign will be fought most intensely, with 146 votes at stake. To win, a candidate needs 270 electoral votes.

The Great Party ID Debate in Polling

Rarely does a poll go by where I or some other blogger doesn’t complain about the inherent built-in inaccuracy of very expensive polling due to the party ID split.  Sometimes the split is purposeful to reflect the most recently identified electorate.  Other times it is an attempt to accurately forecast the upcoming turnout (always a hard task). One of the true experts on this topic takes on this herculean task with his must-read Morning Jay Column.  I’ll excerpt the important point below but if you have the slightest interest in this topic, I strongly encourage you to click through and read the whole thing:

Over the last quarter century, party identification on Election Day has actually been quite stable in presidential elections. On average, Democrats have enjoyed a 3-point advantage going back to 1984; in most elections, the edge falls between D+1 and D+5. Some argue that there is a recent trend that favors the Democrats, as 2008 saw the highest Democratic advantage since 1980. On the other hand, 2004 saw the best Republican year in generations.

A lot of the movement in party identification from cycle to cycle is not the two sides “turning out their bases,” as is commonly assumed. Instead, it has to do with how the marginal partisans on both sides are reacting to the national political climate. Remember: Something like 35 percent of the population calls itself “independent,” but only about 10 percent has no party affiliation whatsoever. That means there are a lot of “hidden” partisans who can “emerge” in good years for their sides. For instance, in a good year for the GOP, regular Republican voters who often think of themselves as independent will call themselves Republicans, and so the percentage of Republicans in the electorate will rise. In a bad year for the GOP, they’ll call themselves independents and the percentage of Republicans will fall. Same goes for the Democrats.

This actually explains much of the Democratic advantage 2008. A 20 percent increase in the black vote relative to 2004 helped boost the Democratic share of the electorate to 39 percent; meanwhile, some Republican voters started calling themselves “independents.” They still voted for McCain, however, which explains why Obama only won the independent vote by 8 points, compared to the 20-point victory House Democrats enjoyed in 2006.

Applying this historical perspective to today’s polls, I think it is unlikely that we are going to see a Democratic advantage equal to or larger than the D+7 Obama enjoyed in 2008. I see something closer to the historical average of D+3. That’s just a guess, albeit it an educated one.

And when I look at partisan splits in the polls, the farther a poll moves away from D+3, the less I am willing to take a “naïve” view of it, i.e. just look at the head-to-head margin. Instead, I look closely at the way the independent vote is leaning, as that is a good gauge of where the race actually stands. As a general rule of thumb, if you see President Obama leading in the overall numbers but losing among independents, it stands to reason that the poll is more Democratic than what we shall see on Election Day.

Quick Thoughts on First Read’s Ranking of the Battlegrounds

Earlier this morning MSNBC ranked the Battlegrounds in order of Romney’s chances of flipping the 2008 blue state into his column.  I only have a few issues with their list so I’ll provide a one sentence comment followed by my ranking in parenthesis at the end:

1. North Carolina — Not a Battleground.  It’s already Romney’s. How many times has Obama visited this state over the last 90 days?  He doesn’t want to be seen trying to win this lost cause and his ad dollars prove it. ( – )
2. Iowa — A little surprised they see it this high since I view it as one of the pure toss-ups. Romney’s position on the wind tax credit could be an Achilles heel. I would have put Florida here especially after recent polling proves Seniors ❤ Paul Ryan. (2 )
3. Florida — I think this is the next state to fall for Romney and would have ranked it #1. Seniors love Ryan, the Hispanic vote is split and the economy sucks.  Put this in Romney’s column by October. ( 1 )
4. Colorado — Another pure toss-up with Iowa, Virginia and Ohio (in my book).  I would make those 4 states tied at 2-5 in the rankings. ( 3)
5. Virginia — Pure toss-up. Plenty of advantages in Northern Virginia balanced against plenty of advantages for Romney everywhere else.  This state will be a battle up to and through Nov 6. (4)
6. Nevada — This state is a tough nut to crack.  I want it to be a toss-up but until I see Romney making serious progress here and overcome the state party fratricide it’s a slight lean Obama but still vulnerable due to the horrible economy. (6)
7. Ohio — I put Ohio in the pure toss-up even though the Dems think it’s a lean Obama due to the auto bailout. The energy issue and Obamacare disdain are equally powerful and a huge weaknesses for Obama. (5)
8. Wisconsin — The state has the obvious strengths for Romney in Scott Walker’s ground game, Ryan on the ticket and the changing state landscape since 2010.  But it’s a Democrat state until I see polls showing Romney up 3+ meaning he’d win by 1-point. (7)
9. New Hampshire — One of the hardest state’s to read.  There is a huge Independent streak in this state that can break either way. Romney’s ties to the state are a huge help but the entire region has been trending blue for decades. (8)

Addendum:

Michigan — It is political punditry malpractice to not include Michigan in this list.  Romney is unquestionably competing in the state, he has decades long ties to the state and  Real Clear Politics has the average margin at +3.3%.  It is a definite Battleground (9)
Pennsylvania — Obama is vulnerable in this state but Chuck Todd regularly poo-poos this state as a Battleground and ever more I am inclined to agree with him  It may flip to Romney but it would be well after Romney has cliched the Presidency. (10)

Ryan Rally in Janesville, Wisconsin Monday (Aug 27) 10:45am

The Republican Convention kicks-off next week and Paul Ryan is heading home to Wisconsin from the campaign trail before leaving for Tampa.  You can join the groundswell of support for the future Vice President in his home town:

Convention Send-Off Rally with Paul Ryan with Janesville!

When: August 27, 2012 – 10:45am
Where: Janesville Craig High School, 401 South Randall Avenue, Janesville, WI 53545

You’re welcome to attend a Convention Send-Off Rally with Paul Ryan. Doors open at 8:45 AM and the event begins at 10:45 AM.

To RSVP and get your ticket, click here: http://conventionsendoff.eventbrite.com/

All attendees will go through airport-like security and should bring as few personal items as possible. No bags, sharp objects, umbrellas, liquids, or signs will be allowed in the venue. Cameras are permitted.

For Questions, contact us at: TeamWI@mittromney.com or call (608) 535-9307; For Important Campaign Updates: Text (WI) to GOMITT (466488)

Obama +5.5 in Michigan — Glengariff Group

New Poll commissioned by local Detroit TV stations shows President Obama with a +5.5 lead over Mitt Romney (47.5 to 42.0) in Michigan. The party ID was very fair at D +6 in this volatile state that has experienced many population shifts over the last decade.  In 2008 the Democrat advantage was D +12 and in 2004 the party ID was D +5. The poll, of 600 likely voters in a live-operator telephone survey, was conducted Saturday through Monday by Glengariff Group Inc. In this poll, 80 percent of respondents were land-line users, 20 percent were cellphone users. It was commissioned by The Detroit News, WDIV Local 4 and WZZM-TV in Grand Rapids, and has a margin of error is +/- 4 percentage points.  Among the respondents, 39.1 percent said they lean or vote mostly for Democratic candidates, 33 percent said they lean or vote mostly for Republican candidates and 25 percent they were independent voters. (2.8 percent did not know or did not answer.)

For President Percent
Barack Obama 47.5
Mitt Romney 42.0
Other/Undecided 10.5

Obama +3 in Ohio — University of Cincinnati

The local pollsters are getting in on the Presidential action with the University of Cincinnati release its own survey showing the President maintaining a narrow lead in the Buckeye State. Obama leads Romney by 3-points 49 to 46 which is within the polls margin of error. Important for the Romney camp, the poll shows a majority of voters find the economy the most important issue of the election and favor Romney on that issue by a margin of 49 to 42.  The survey was of  847 likely voters was conducted August 16-21, 2012.  The margin of error is +/- 3.4 percentage points.

For President Percent
Barack Obama 49
Mitt Romney 46
Other 2
Undecided 2

Obama +9 in Pennsylvania — Muhlenberg/Morning Call

New polls in Pennsylvania show the President with a large lead in the Keystone state.  It seems like the Romney campaign his half-in, half-out in Pennsylvania making large campaign stops but also not spending money on TV ads.  That could quite possible change after Monday when Romney becomes the official nominee freeing up hundreds of millions of general election funds, but we’ll have to wait and see on that.  Until then, according to the Muhlenberg/Morning Call poll, President Obama remains in commend of these 20 electoral votes. The poll of 422 likely voters was conducted Monday Aug. 20 through Wednesday Aug. 22 and has a margin of error of +/- 5 percent:

For President Percent
Barack Obama 49
Mitt Romney 40
Undecided/Other 11

Mitt Romney Releases Energy Plan in New Mexico

Mitt Romney stumps in the expanded Battleground state of New Mexico today and launched his plan for rapidly expanding energy production in the US and putting the country on a the towards energy independence:

Seeking to refocus his presidential campaign on the economy after days of distraction, Republican is promoting energy proposals aimed at creating more than 3 million new jobs and opening up more areas for drilling off the coast of two politically critical states, Virginia and North Carolina. Romney is traveling from Arkansas to New Mexico on Thursday to discuss what aides cast as a comprehensive energy plan that would result in more than $1 trillion in revenue for federal, state and local governments, plus millions of jobs.

The most significant aspects of Romney’s plans hinge on opening up more areas for offshore oil drilling, including in the mid-Atlantic, where it is currently banned. Romney also wants to give states the power to establish all forms of energy production on federal lands, a significant shift in current policy that could face strong opposition in Congress.

In a supporting document, Romney says it now takes up to 307 days to receive permits to drill a well on federal land. By contrast, states such as North Dakota issue permits within 10 days and Colorado within 27 days, Romney said. “States are far better able to develop, adopt and enforce regulations based on their unique resources, geology and local concerns,” the statement said.

In an effort to appease environmentalists, Romney says he would prevent energy production on federal lands designated as off-limits. Romney’s plan focuses heavily on boosting domestic oil production, including approving the Keystone XL pipeline that would run from Canada to U.S. refineries in Texas.

The proposal would establish a new five-year leasing plan for offshore oil production that “aggressively opens” new areas for drilling, starting with the coasts of Virginia and North Carolina. Virginia’s Republican Gov. Bob McDonnell has pushed to expand offshore drilling as a boost to Virginia’s economy.

The Obama administration has proposed a plan that would allow energy companies to begin seismic testing to find oil and natural reserves in the Atlantic Ocean. Companies would use the information to determine where to apply for energy leases, although no leases would be available until at least 2017.

Thoughts on Polling Firm Foster McCollum White & Associates

A polling firm is only as good as their reputations and “Foster McCollum” is comparatively new on the national scene compared to a Gallup, Rasmussen or Quinnipiac.  It doesn’t make them any more or any less credible but it does mean they have less of a track record to check for a “house bias” as Nate Silver measures it.  Obviously they generated a lot of buzz (most of it negative) for their Florida poll showing Romney up +15 points in a race that has been a toss-up for either candidate depending on the week.  I credit the polling firm’s President Eric Foster for meeting the controversy head on by addressing the poll’s findings and unusual sample sizes by reaching out and posting a public comment on my post.  Foster offered great detail and an explanation that helps readers to more credibly look at the results.

A few people have taken shots at me because I have referred to the firm as a “Democrat Polling firm.” I came to this conclusion based on how they have been referred to previously. Here is Business Insider interviewing the President of the firm regarding the Presidential contest: “Democratic Pollster: Obama’s Negative Tone And Messaging Is Going To Lose Him Michigan.” Real Clear Politics also identifies them with a (D) designate after their name (Side note: I need to find out the right way to refer to them. RCP calls them Baydoun/Foster). Feel free to dismiss my posts as partisan because of the labels I ascribe to some firms, but dismiss me and apparently Foster McCollum at your own peril.

In the above linked “Democratic Pollster” piece, Foster McCollum’s President claims Obama may lose Michigan at a time  (mid-June) when genuinely biased Public Policy Polling had Obama leading by an incredible 14 points. The pro-Obama media was derisively laughing at the Romney campaign trying to compete in Michigan claiming the state was part of an impregnable “blue wall.” Today the Real Clear Politics Average is Obama +3.3.  It appears President Eric Foster knew a lot more about what the poll numbers were telling him than either the conventional wisdom or PPP were representing.

Additionally, in my quick search I came across their polling for the Republican primary in Michigan which was a razor thin win for Romney in his “home” state.  The final results were Romney winning by 3 points over Santorum 41 to 38.  The evening before the primary Foster McCollum released its poll (a time most precarious because you have no excuses if you’re way off) and it showed Rick Santorum closing fast, erasing an 8 point deficit and closing to within just over 2% of Romney — nearly the exact outcome.  They also had the order correct: Romney, Santorum, Paul and Gingrich and almost each candidate’s final vote percentage within the margin of error. Romney’s total was 0.6% above the margin of error.  For a primary election that is damn accurate.

None of this means the much talked about Florida poll is definitely correct.  In my humble opinion it reflects a best case scenario for the Republicans where their base is fired up and the Democrats are resigned to defeat (basically an inverse of 2008 which is how Obama won North Carolina and Indiana).  But they called the GOP Michigan primary spot on, they forecast  Michigan exactly as it has played out and the big take-away from the Florida poll was that seniors are trending towards Romney after the Ryan pick and that is exactly what is happening.

Paul Ryan’s Impact on Battleground State Seniors — Definite Plus to No Impact

In the immediate aftermath of Paul Ryan’s selection as Romney’s VP, the Obama re-election team in the media televised and wrote countless ominous stories about Ryan  having a meaningful negative impact the Romney campaign, going so far as to write off some battleground states.  We immediately told you those stories were complete bunk and every poll since then has confirmed this.  We’ll set aside the controversial Foster McCollum poll for now and look at just the Seniors vote in this morning’s Democrat over-sampled Quinnipiac polls.

In Florida, where we showed the sampling to be a Democrat wave meaningfully higher than 2008, Seniors preferred Romney-Ryan by 13 points 55 to 42.  In 2008 Seniors voted for John McCain by 8 points 53 to 45.  So a five point bump among seniors in a poll that over-samples Democrats.

In Ohio, where the sampling matched 2008’s Democrat wave that isn’t going to be repeated, Seniors preferred Romney-Ryan by 8 points 52 to 44.  In 2008 Seniors voted for John  McCain by 11 points 55 to 44. That’s a 3-point drop both within the margin of error and reflective of the Dem over-sampling.

In Wisconsin, where the sampling was nominally below the 2008 Democrat wave, Seniors preferred Romney-Ryan by 2 points 49 to 47. In 2008, seniors were perfectly split 50-50, so a 2-point bump for Romney -Ryan.

The bottom line is the Paul Ryan impact on seniors is a net positive with momentum shading towards being a decided positive based on the likely voter identification on election day in November — completely contrary to what the media was breathlessly telling you in the immediate aftermath of his selection.