It’s the rare (re-)poll indeed that turns my thoughts to suicide, but lock your knives up tight and try eyeballing this one. Unless I missed something, the one and only positive result for McCain over 15 pages of crosstabs is that he’s still thought of as a superior commander-in-chief. Otherwise, it’s insanity like this:

The sample’s comprised of 476 likely voters whom they interviewed in late September. That poll shook out at 48/43 for The One, but with undecided voters now splitting for Obama 52/36, he leads overall by 13. Why?


How this squares with the fact that most national polls have tightened a bit and now put Maverick within five or six is beyond me. Maybe it’s the fact that the weighted sample favors the Dems by more than 10 points? 38.2 D, 27.3 R, 34.7 I. Or maybe it’s this:

Combine the lopsided Democratic sample with the perceived negativity and no wonder McPalin’s net favorables are in the tank, with McCain down to -9 from +1 a month ago and the ‘Cuda down to -11 from +6. It’s not independents who are killing them — they’re both -1 among that group — it’s Democrats. Both of them have just a nine percent favorable rating among Dems; for comparison, Obama’s and Biden’s ratings among Republicans are 17 percent and 25 percent, respectively. Exit question: What’s the strategy with two weeks left to bring indies back around? Joe the Plumber-palooza? Or is it time to double down on attacks?

Update: Silver lining: In a poll of five key swing states, Rasmussen has him back up again slightly in Florida and Ohio. Dark cloud: He almost certainly needs all five states to win.