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Polls, polls, polls
August 22, 2008 - Steve Murch
As speculation builds Friday afternoon over Barack Obama’s vice presidential candidate (and cable TV is staking out every nook and cranny of the country), pollsters are working overtime. Polls are being conducted every hour it seems and with every combination possible.
Friday morning CNN had a poll not only comparing Obama to John McCain, but Hillary Clinton to McCain. The poll showed that Clinton had a bigger “lead” on McCain. First memo to CNN (or to the polling company that did the survey), Clinton isn’t the candidate. Secondly, don’t you think that by being out of the spotlight helped freshen Hillary in the eyes of voters. And exactly are these people who actually responded — why didn’t they tell the pollster how foolish they were for posing Clinton in a head-to-head with McCain?
Of course we’re being inundated with these polls because the Democratic National Convention begins next week, and Republicans are to follow. As history has shown, each candidate will receive a bump during and immediately following their respective convention. By the end of September when all post-convention analysis is wrapped up we should be beyond the hype stage and into the real guts of the campaigns. Then polls should show us what Americans are thinking — which heading into the conventions, polls shows a near statistical dead heat.
The one recent poll that is probably the closest to importance this far from the general election was the most recent Fox News poll of independent voters. Obama had a 2 percent lead on McCain, but 36 percent of those voters were undecided.
It could be an interesting couple of months.
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