An hors d’oeuvre to whet your appetite for tomorrow night’s debate. Three different national polls released yesterday also showed the race within the margin of error, so yes, Romney’s very much within striking distance. In fact:
The sample of *registered* voters is 45D/39R/14I; figure that the sample of likelies is another two or three points more Republican and that’s not a half bad estimate of election-day turnout. (Both Scott Rasmussen and Romney’s pollster Neil Newhouse are expecting something on the order of D+3.) More from NBC:
Obama edges Romney by three points among likely voters, 49 percent to 46 percent, which is within the survey’s margin of error. Obama’s lead was five points, 50 percent to 45 percent, in the NBC/WSJ poll released two weeks ago, following the political conventions…
[A]mong voters expressing the highest interest in the election, Obama and Romney are essentially tied (49 percent to 48 percent).
And two key pillars of Obama’s political coalition – Latinos and young voters – are much less interested in the election than they were in 2008…
Given the increased economic optimism, Obama and Romney are nearly tied on which candidate would better handle the economy, with 45 percent picking Romney and 42 percent choosing Obama.
I’m not so sure that the uptick lately in O’s numbers on the economy is due to any bona fide optimism. NBC says they’re seeing movement among Republicans and indies too, but most of it is coming from Democrats. That’s no surprise: The closer we get to election day, the more people’s views of O’s performance will be colored by their preference for him or against him. Democrats are getting their game faces on, so it’s time to convince themselves that things are much rosier than they actually are. Note the sharp increase starting in August as casual Democratic partisans started coming home:
They had to tell themselves that the economy’s improving in order to justify voting Democratic, so that’s what they’re telling themselves. I think you’re seeing the same thing happen with this result, which is a disgrace:
Under normal circumstances, i.e. without an era-defining presidential election looming five weeks from now, I think you’d see something there on the order of 35/55. As it is, Democrats need to circle the wagons and pretend like the Foreign Policy President wasn’t (a) inexcusably negligent about Chris Stevens’s security in Benghazi and (b) a shameless liar about whether the attack was planned or spontaneous afterward.
Update: Dead heat.
Romney led in the poll among independents, 49 percent to 41 percent, with both candidates winning more than 90 percent support from their respective parties. The survey had Obama winning 81 percent of the nonwhite vote and Romney carrying 55 percent of white voters.
In estimating the turnout on Nov. 6, the poll projects an electorate that is 74 percent white, 11 percent African-American, and 8 percent Latino. The likely-voter party splits are 36 percent Democratic, 29 percent Republican, and 30 percent independent.
The estimates are similar to the 2008 turnout, when, according to CNN exit polling, 74 percent of voters were white, 13 percent black, and 9 percent Latino, with Democratic turnout at 39 percent, Republicans at 32 percent, and independents at 29 percent.
All even — with a D+7 sample? Oh my.