« Kerry Gains on Bush in Time Poll | Main | So, How Well Does That Gallup Likely Voter Model Really Work? »

Kerry Up 1 in NH See-Saw Race

Kerry leads Bush 47-46 among New Hampshire LVs, with 7 percent unsure, in a head-to-head poll conducted 9/20-23 by Research 2000 for The Concord Monitor.


The inside baseball technical analysis of the horse race is interesting up to a point, but it ignores the elephant in the room, so to speak. I have been a Democrat my entire adult life, and I have enjoyed rooting for "my team" in many elections. In over 35 years, I have never before experienced an election, where I honestly thought democracy and the rule of law might be at stake. Bush has been such a bad President, such a radically bad President on so many levels, that when I see the poll results, I am less interested in the technical questions, which might give me hope that "my team" will finish first and win the pennant, than I am shrilly interested in what the heck Bush supporters are thinking.
Do they not care? Do they simply not know? How can a President with Bush's record get the support of a near-majority? The "wrong track" numbers remind me that people are not completely nuts, but how is it that a significant fraction of the population think we are on the "right" track, and another significant fraction think Bush is not responsible.
How do nominally fiscally conservative Republican voters rationalize away the deficits? How do they rationalize away Iraq? Not finding Osama? North Korea? How do people rationalize Bush's inarticulateness and smug self-presentation?
These are some the questions I would like polls to partly answer for me.
Just as one concrete example, do "angry white men/Fox News viewers" intend to vote for Bush because they believe all sorts of not-true things? Saddam behind 9/11, Bush served honorably, economy is booming, etc.


You asked the same questions that I have been asking for a long time. I know we aren't suppose to have these discussions here, but I think polls are fundamentally flawed (they show us the horserace, but it doesn't tell us much about how well informed the electorate is or is not, and for that matter, do not give us a clear understanding of what views they maybe holding. My friend, a military history buff, and I were talking about the Iraqi war. He's a moderate to conservative guy. Specifically, he and I could not wrap our minds around the inconsistencies in people's views. He could not understand how anyone would go into a military conflict not thinking their would be long term repurcussions for it. By his view of wars, he actually feels that up until the insurgents began to take over sections of Iraqi, that historically, the war wasn't going poorly militarily. I think the mistake with polling data is that it doesn't ask the right questions. i.e., If someone says to the pollster, I believe that Saddam was behind 09/11 asked them what is the basis of the belief. If they say they feel they are safer or not safer ask them to give at least 5 facts which explain this feeling. I guess my point is that the polls are superficial, and provide no real political discussion even for the people taking the polls. It's the skit on Jay Leno where he ask American's really simple questions- and they invariably get it wrong. Least, I get a response back saying that this is an attack on the right, I should point out that I think this is a larger issue of a lack of civic education. If they say they support Bush or Kerry ask them to give indepth reasons why- ie, literaly ask them to name 10 issues they agree with someone on. I have done this with so-called north Republicans, and I am constantly amazed at how they call themselves Republicans, and yet where it counts they sound like moderate Democrats.