Reid camp claims lead of four to eight points based on internal polls

First, the early vote results show that strictly on party registration, Democrats actually have a 9,000-vote lead from votes already cast. (Jon Ralston, the king of all political media here, has an excellent round-up). This is a surprising number, given that this is the nationalized race of what is supposed to be a wave election, and it indicates that Reid may have stopped the bleeding several weeks ago, enough to shore up his base and get out his vote. And the Reid campaign believes — given that Angle is so far outside the mainstream of even conservative Republican politics, and given the sizeable Republicans for Reid operation in the state — that Senator Reid will pick up more disaffected Republican votes than Angle will pick up disaffected Democratic votes.

Second, counter to all of the public polls, the internal Reid numbers for the past three weeks show that Reid has actually had a lead ranging from 4 to 8 points (and last week, the National Republican Senate Campaign Committee had a similar internal poll showing Reid six points up). The campaign’s rolling-track numbers from last Friday also showed Senator Reid with a six-point lead.

Why are these numbers so different from Rasmussen, Mason-Dixon, et al? Well, first and foremost, Nevada is unlike any other state, in that it has a comparatively transient population, with lots of newcomers, and a sizeable percentage of that population works in the gaming industry — the casinos.