The post-RNC polls are coming out and they show some interesting things not only about how voters are thinking about the election but about how the press is reporting it.
First a summary of the polls:
Time poll has Bush leading 53 to 43 (previous Time poll had Bush leading Bush and Kerry tied at 46)
Newsweek has Bush leading 54 to 43 (Previous Newsweek poll not available on summary chart on pollingreport.com)
Zogby has Bush leading 46 to 44 (Previous Zogby poll not available on summary chart on pollingreport.com)
American Research Group has Kerry leading 46 to 45 (Previous ARG poll had Kerry leading 49 to 45).
The post RNC state by state polls (the only ones that really matter) haven't started coming out yet. It could very well be the case that the bounce in the national polls is due to increased support in states already solidly behind Bush.
Zogby's summary report of the post RNC "bounce" is that undecideds who had been leaning towards Kerry were now firmly undecided again. Also some voters who had been supporting Kerry are now undecided. In past postings and comments I've said that I believe that negative ads have the effect of depressing turnout among undecided voters. This is because while it can convince people that the victim candidate is undesirable, it doesn't convince them to vote for the perpetrator. Zogby's analysis presents a similar view of the most recent polls. This means that it is now up to Kerry to restate his case for his candidacy while at the same time decoupling undecided from Bush by attacking Bush. This is the point in the campaign where Dukakis failed miserably. Early indications are that Kerry's campaign is at least not going to do what Dukakis did (i.e. nothing).
The press is reporting mainly the Time and Newsweek polls which are probably outliers but fits better with screaming head formating on the talk shows. Zogby and ARG have been more consistently in the middle of the varied poll results but their less dramatic numbers are not getting air time. This means that what might be a modest 4 point bounce for Bush is being reported like a 10 point bounce.
Sunday, September 05, 2004
Posted by Raised By Republicans at 9:41 AM