COMMENTS: Polling the Palin Effect

NBC News published the national opinion poll it conducts with The Wall Street Journal. It found Barack Obama with a tiny lead in the popular vote over John McCain, 47%-46%. Political director Chuck Todd talked us through the numbers. Both candidates enjoyed a bounce in popularity as a result of their conventions. "Obama still has this enthusiasm advantage but it is not nearly the gap he once had." The reason was, you guessed it, "the Sarah Palin effect." Specifically she has firmed up support in "soft Republican targets" so Indiana, North Carolina and Missouri are no longer swing states.

ABC and CBS looked at demographics rather than states. Barbara Pinto zeroed in on white women for ABC's A Closer Look. "Palin has managed to capture the attention of so many people, especially women, but the question is Can she keep it?…Whether or not they decide to vote for Sarah Palin, a critical voting bloc is clearly excited she is in the race." CBS' Kelly Wallace generalized that "traditionally it is the top of the ticket that sways undecided voters. The emergence of Sarah Palin is challenging that assumption--for now."


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