So many things scare me about the upcoming election. I worry that Obama supporters will get over-confident from the polls and not turn out to vote. I worry about Republican voter suppression tactics swinging a close race. I worry that too many young voters won’t realize how important this election is to the future make up of the Supreme Court and stay home hitting the bong. (I also worry about the reaction of the unhinged few on the far right who will refuse to believe Obama was fairly elected, buy the GOP narrative of a stolen election, and swallow down the hyperbole of “the end of America” and “a thousand years of darkness” who also happen to be mentally unstable enough to commit violence and armed enough to do serious damage, but that is a topic for a different post.)
This news however lightened my mood a bit and granted me a bit of confidence. (Not overconfidence, mind you. I will still be volunteering and doing what I can this cycle.):
Republicans are getting depressed under an avalanche of polling suggesting that an Obama victory is in the offing. They, in fact, suggest no such thing!
If you adjust virtually any of the published polls to reflect the 2004 vote, not the 2008 vote, they show the race either tied or Romney ahead, a view much closer to reality.
Almost all of the published polls show Obama getting less than 50% of the vote and less than 50% job approval. A majority of the voters either support Romney or are undecided in almost every poll.But the fact is that the undecided vote always goes against the incumbent. In 1980 (the last time an incumbent Democrat was beaten), for example, the Gallup Poll of October 27th had Carter ahead by 45-39. Their survey on November 2nd showed Reagan catching up and leading by three points. In the actual voting, the Republican won by nine. The undecided vote broke sharply — and unanimously — for the challenger.
An undecided voter has really decided not to back the incumbent. He just won’t focus on the race until later in the game.
So, when the published poll shows Obama ahead by, say, 48-45, he’s really probably losing by 52-48!
I could spend the time tearing this apart line by line, explaining how and why the polls are not biased, how idiotic it would be for pollsters who’s reputation depends on their accuracy to intentionally slant a poll, and how history shows that no, the undecided vote does not always (or usually, or even often) break for the challenger, in fact it actually splits relatively evenly. I could even link to Nate Silver’s research on that point to back up my claims.
But there is no need to go into all of that. All you need to know about Dick Morris’ post is that it was written by Dick Morris.
Forget the national polls. Forget the swing state polls. Forget all of Romney’s gaffes.
The clearest indication that Obama is winning the presidential race is that Dick Morris thinks he is losing.