Daily Poll Roundup

There have been no major head-to-head polls out since yesterday, so the RealClear Politics average remains at Bush +3.4. Several new state polls have come out and they’re very much a mixed bag, although showing a bit of a Kerry gain.

Electoral-Vote.com has added in new poll results from AR, CO, FL, NH, NJ, OH, OK, PA, TN, and WA and revised his calculation to Kerry 284, Bush 247 (up from Kerry 253, Bush 247 yesterday). The reason? The latest Survey USA poll has Florida leaning Kerry by 1% after being “exactly tied” yesterday. I’m a bit skeptical of this result but we’ll soon see.

Slate’s Election Scorecard has it 299-239 for Kerry, giving him Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania–a trifecta among the Big 3 swing states. Let me go out on a limb here and say that ain’t gonna happen. Indeed, they don’t think so either:

Bush’s average national margin narrows; several polls now suggest a tie. Latest polls give Kerry 299 electoral votes, but a more complete Slate analysis later today will assign Florida to Bush, New Mexico to Kerry, and one Maine EV to Bush, leaving Kerry with 276.

Meanwhile, Bush’s slight lead in Colorado continues to grow:

Bush gains in poll – Numbers indicate more women moved into GOP column (Rocky Mountain News)

President Bush has pulled ahead of Sen. John Kerry in Colorado on the strength of increased popularity among women, according to a Rocky Mountain News/News 4 poll. Bush leads by 5 points, just outside the poll’s margin of error and up from a 1-point edge last month. His advantage includes a plurality of women, a change from previous polls that showed female voters preferred Kerry. Overall, the president has the support of 47 percent of respondents who said they were likely to vote Nov. 2. Kerry has 42 percent, and Ralph Nader has 3 percent. Five percent remain undecided, and another 3 percent refused to say whom they’ll vote for. “This is a war of inches,” said Lori Weigel of Public Opinion Strategies, which conducted the poll. Bush “has definitely inched ahead.” “I hate to say it,” she added, “but it just might be the soccer moms.”


Bush made several gains compared with a similar poll last month. He narrowed Kerry’s advantage among independent voters from 30 points to 7. And he padded his lead among Republicans by 4 points, while Kerry’s lead among Democrats stayed the same. Perhaps most important, the president turned a 7-point deficit among women into a 2-point advantage. Bush maintains a 9-point lead among men, the poll indicates.

This seems consistent with the national head-to-head polls.

Other interesting developments:

  • Bush just barely leads in North Carolina and Virginia
  • Ohio has swung back to Bush, although barely, in the latest polls
  • Pennsylvania looks increasingly like a Kerry lock, moving out of the “swing” category
  • Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, and Arkansas continue to trend Bush

Again, it’s the state polls, not the national polls, that are important.

Update (1250): Via Wizbang, I’ve added a poll tracker to the top navbar, which I’ll leave up through the election. I already have a link to all the major polls and poll roundups, but it’s a handy visual device.

Update (1255): I moved it down just a bit, so that it has a white backing.

Update (1327): Larry Sabato has it Bush 284, Kerry 254 (via Stephen Green).

Now that the three presidential and one vice-presidential debates are through, it is clear that the debates in many ways served to elevate Kerry. In an ironic twist of fate, the rules that the president’s campaign thought would help George W. Bush strike a convincing blow against the Democrat only kept John Kerry on message and within the allotted time. With national polls showing the president anywhere from a point to many points ahead of the Democrat, it will come down to just a few states in the Electoral College. The Crystal Ball has moved Arizona, Arkansas, Missouri, Louisiana, Tennessee, North Carolina, Virginia, and West Virginia to solid Red states. That leaves–as we see it–11 states: Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin for a total of 121 electoral votes. Of course, some states are much, much closer than others.

Sabato gives the Florida and Ohio to Bush and Pennsylvania and New Mexico to Kerry, all narrowly. That’s my guess as well. I’m a bit dubious of a Bush runaway in North Carolina, however. The demographics of the state continue to change in ways that are eroding its traditional Southern heritage, owing to a surge of job seekers from the Rust Belt.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Some guy says:

    Electoral-Vote.com is spinning wildly out of control. He’s way too partisan.

    He had a piece a few days ago defending his methodology. Suffice it to say it needed defending.

  2. James Joyner says:

    I don’t think it’s so much that he’s being partisan–he was showing a more pro-Bush figure than the others recently–as that it’s based on whatever the latest poll is, regardless of the caliber of the poll.

  3. Talentscout says:

    JFKGB (who really funded the Viet Nam anti war movement?) slipping among women? Maybe he should take counsel from the previous dem pres. Might be his numbers would climb if he was accused of glomming all over some female campaign worker or intern. Maybe not though. Terror eaze ahh might not cover his six like Hillary did for Bill.

  4. dw says:

    Things that keeps bothering me about the polls… are they taking into account the record number of voter registrations and whether that may be skewing their percentages and weights WRT party preference? Are they looking at underlying shifts in likely voter preferences vs. 2000? How are the voter drives by Rock the Vote and the Christian Coalition affecting things?

    The Seattle P-I’s raw numbers show a jump of 300,000 new voter registrations over 2000. In a state with 50% average sufferage and a voting population around 3 million that’s a 10% shift. Assuming that’s going on all over the country, it’s entirely possible the polls are wrong in either direction.

    It’s going to come down to turnout more than any election in history. There are so few undecideds that their votes do matter, but at this point the parties would do better to abandon them, screw the middle, and whip their partisans into a frenzy so that they’re piling 10 at a time into their Escalades/Priuses. 10 GOP/Dems are worth more than the one idiot out there waiting for a candidate to give him a free pony.