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New Newsweek Poll: Kerry 49, Bush 46

John Kerry leads George Bush 49-46 percent of nation-wide RV's in a head-to-head match-up, according to a Newsweek Poll conducted Sept. 30-October 2nd, after the first presidential debate. The poll also found that 61 percent of those who watched the debate said Kerry won, 19 percent said Bush won and 16 percent said it was a tie.

Comments

YES!!!

This new poll should be especially troubling in regards to Molyneaux's article. It seems to me that it means, if the election were held today, Bush would get no more than 46% but Kerry would 49+ since he is the challenger. Dangerous territory indeed for an incumbent.

This is even better than I had expected. The media no doubt will spin this as a tie. Even though, had the numbers been reversed, they would be talking about Bush still leading.

Anyway, we survived - and even thrived - on Bush's turf.

Now it's our turn to talk about the economy.

I hope we get more polls like this. Not only because it has Kerry in the lead, but it also makes it more difficult for the Republicans to spin the debate.

Did we really LOSE ground among Dems in this poll, and even drop a point among independents? We apparently did this all on party ID finally righting itself.

I think that this poll shows that Americans are looking for a leader who is able to make informed judgements based on his own Analysis.

The trick for Kerry will be to make the final link for voters between domestic energy self sufficiency (read Apollo project), national security and an improved economy. I think once voters make the mental links between globalization, bush energy policies and destruction of the middle class they will send the neocons into exile.

I must say that I'm surprised by this quick transition. I was fully aware of Bush's disastrous performance on Thursday night, but I didn't think it would have this big an impact, this fast. About the only thing that could explain it is if the public was looking for a reason, any reason not to vote for George Bush and this debate gave it to them.

OK Ruy. Give us the low-down on your thoughts....

Woo-Hoo!

Is it because lots of people who dislike Bush had, til the debate, seen Kerry only through the right-wing-created "frame" (flip-flopper, weak, etc.), and the debate allowed them to see through that and so reassured them that Kerry might be acceptable after all?

http://slate.msn.com/id/2107682/fr/rss/

This bounce will deflate if the democrats cannot hold the post-debate momentum.

Kerry said pretty clearly that no other nation should be able to prevent US action.

When Bush claims the opposite, why exactly can does Kerry not call that a lie?

Since instead of lying, he is calling it misleading, I would like to hear a statement soon and consistently that Bush is misleading the American people about what he said at the debate.

And I hope Kerry takes the offensive also, and we make a big deal out of the fact that Bush does not think we can afford homeland security.

One of the best consequences from polls like this is that the Bush-as-inevitable-winner aura gets smashed and the media will have a harder time pushing that particular propaganda.

I couldn't find the methodology of this poll, if someone could elaborate?

NEWS FALSH: NEWSWEEK POLL IS MEANINGLESS (See Below). OK, Newsweek flipped the switch to more Dems this time. Will you now, with a straight face, say this Newsweek result is bogus, like you did last week when GWB was ahead because it included more Reps.

We all know the MSM (CBS, NY Times, ABC, LA Times, CNN, NBC, Wash Post et al) is DESPERATE for a Kerry comeback storyline; So I'm sure they will be beside themselves with jubilation after seeing this Newsweek poll, like most on this forum. To really make any sense of this poll, however, we need to know what the GWB-Kerry split was AMONG THIS SAME SAMPLE both BEFORE and AFTER this poll similar to what the LA Times did.

Unitl we all know the before and after, this poll is meaningless IMO.

http://powerlineblog.com/archives/008037.php

UPDATE: Reader Meg Kreikemeier points out that according to RealClearPolitics, Newsweek's most recent poll included 345 Republicans, 364 Democrats and 278 independents. This compares to Newsweek's published data for their most recent prior poll, which showed President Bush with a comfortable lead: 391 Republicans,
300 Democrats and 270 independents. Yes, if you drop 46 Republicans and add 64 Democrats, you will get considerably better results for the Democratic nominee. This is a good reminder of why poll data always need to be taken with a grain of salt, especially until you see the underlying data.

My point about the Newsweek poll, however, was not that it was right, but that it and others like it will be the basis for a media effort to give the Kerry campaign momentum going down the stretch.

HINDROCKET adds: Dafydd ab Hugh weighs in:

Bush was doing 9 points better than Kerry among their respective parties in the last poll, and he's doing 9 points better than Kerry among their respective parties in this poll; and in addition, Kerry was up by 6 among independents last time but is only up by five this time. In absolute terms, Kerry lost support slightly in the new survey... but realistically, there was no statistical change whatsoever between the two.
But wait -- then how did Bush drop from being up by 6 last time (49-93) to being down by 2 this time (45-47)? Very simply:

Newsweek's sample had almost 41% Republicans last time but only 35% this time, and only 31% Democrats last time vs. 37% Democrats this time.

Thus are great nonsense-surges created...!

This tells me that because of polling method, the Newsweek poll is completely worthless and should henceforth be ignored. Yeesh.


Posted by Hindrocket at 04:53 PM | TrackBack (2)

In light of the two posts below, this poll simply screams for an analysis of the internals. Because if it shows the same oversampling of Republicans its two predessors showed and still shows Bush trailing, he is in very deep voodoo indeed.

Please Ruy, show us the numbers. We know you can (and will).

The Emerging Democratic Majority may transform into a Surging Democratic Majority if the numbers keep moving like they have.

The actual questions in the Newsweek Poll are illuminating. Respondents are asked about the draft, whether Kerry's changed postions reflect changed circumstances, and whether Bush policies have increased anti-Americanism. Responses must be influenced by surrounding questions. The Kerry campaign should consider this inferential evidence that these are issues which change people's minds on the horserace.

Guess that means it's time to beat the war drums again.

Ready: 1, 2, 3,

Terizm, Terizm, Terizm ...

Watch this for some entertainment:


http://home.earthlink.net/~houval/gopconstrm.mov


Am I supposed to laugh or cry?

This is great news! A huge psychological blow to the Bush campaign. And it just shows how close the race really is and was all this time. Or who would believe that there was a shift of over 10 percent within one day?

Now, let's just hope, the candidate doesn't get giddy and stays as disciplined as he was in the first debate. Way to go, Senator!

NEWSWEAK POLL: THE STORY BEHIND THE NUMBERS....

It turns out, if the following report is true, that Newsweak essentially restricted their sample to the West Coast and Mountain states, and left out critical states such as OH, FLA, MO & PA. Yikes,; How can you do a poll and exclude half the country and the critical battleground states.

Even though your Managing Editor, Evan Thomas, claimed the mainstream media is in the tank for Kerry, I do have one suggestion for you guys at Newsweak: CA is already in the Kerry camp. Try polling FLA, OH & PA next time.

http://politicalvicesquad.blogspot.com/2004/10/liberal-media-cognitive-dissonance.html

Political Vice Squad
Saturday, October 02, 2004

Liberal Media Cognitive Dissonance: The NewsWeak "Poll"

Back on September 11th (good time for a political poll, huh?), NewsWeak belched out a set of data that was based on the following partisan breakdown:

R = 39 percent
D = 30 percent
I = 27 percent
Not stated = 4 percent

Earlier today, however, NewsWeak predictably began the last-ditch media push to try and take down President Bush and to replace him with John Kerry. Part of that process, of course, is and will be a psy-ops campaign to encourage liberal college students actually to vote and to suppress turnout amongst nervous, fickle conservatives. "Polling data" allegedly showing Kerry "closing the gap" or "catching Bush" will be part and parcel of that campaign.

Here's the partisan breakdown for today's "poll" by NewsWeak:

R = 34 percent
D = 36 percent
I = 27 percent
Not stated = 3 percent

In other words, they decreased Republican sampling by 5 percentage points and increased Democratic sampling by 6 full percentage points. Furthermore, this "poll" strictly was limited to the "Pacific and Mountain time zones." In other words, registered voters from the following states completely were excluded: Texas, Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Missouri, Louisiana, Arkansas, Kentucky, Indiana, and the entire old south.

"Stupid is as stupid does"

-- Forrest Gump

P.S. - Please click on "comments" for a more detailed analysis by Oak Leaf, who is one of this blog's and Polipundit.com's most esteemed commentators. He tears this "poll" apart the way a demo crew might tear down a condemned building . . .

UPDATE: A correction is needed for one of my comments. Hat tip to: Al, who's in the thread. Oak Leaf's comments, however, within the thread, are right on the money.

The polling Thursday night was limited to the Mountain and Pacific Time Zones. To be blunt, I didn't even notice that they claimed to have polled on Friday and Saturday. And why not?

I've literally never seen a poll -- which was not stated to be a straw poll or a focus group test -- that was released the same day its sample was completed. Yeah, this "poll" never claimed to have been of likely voters, so adjustments for turnout models would not have been necessary. But still. Come on. The same day???


posted by Jayson Javitz @ 4:34 PM

I would love to see some polling or focus groups give a verdict on what the most effective way to spin the debate for us would be.

I have the feeling that the words "Global Test" tested better for Rove than the alternatives and now he is hammering that.

What tests best for us?

We should be hammering too.

Liberals can spin just as effectively as conservatives but we need someone to say this message works better than that message.

Should we be saying Bush doesn't want to pay for homeland security?

Should we say Bush lost his composure during the debate which proves he is not a strong leader?

Should we say Bush is not facing reality in Iraq?

Which one works best? I don't think everyone should try to push their own pet favorite while the Republicans are a united chorus of "Global Test".

Can someone please publish numbers so we can be as effective as possible.

Funny how folks are rarely concerned with poll internals until they find themselves behind.

This election is today, as it has always been, about turnout. Pure and simple.

There is nothing in anyone's poll methodology that permits them to project who will and who won't get up and go to the polls, who will and who won't become frustrated by long lines and leave without voting, who will and who won't see their employers provide scheduling flexibility to accomodate their voting.

I am not sure where Smooth Jazz got his party breakdown numbers. According to Chris Bowers at MyDD the numbers are a little different:
"There was virtually no movement among the Party ID subsets, especially considering that the subsets have margins of error of plus or minus 6, 6, and 7 respectively. The difference is that the overall sample is composed 36D, 34R and 30 I/O now, compared to 35R, 32D and 33 I/O on September 10th."

No doubt the real numbers will out. What I see is a poll that shows essentially zero change in self-identified Republicans (35 to 34) and yet a big move to Kerry among the overall sample. Which reads to me "Independents are jumping off the fence, and are more willing to call themselves Democrats now that they feel comfortable with Kerry".

So, according to Republicans, polls that show a much higher percentage of GOP partisans than previous data indicate could be possible=good. Polls that only show a slightly higher percentage of GOP partisans than historical trends indicate=bogus liberal media lies.

Mmmmm-kay.

You don't have to have a degree in political science to know Bush gave the worst debate performance since Ross Perot's Admiral VP.

You don't need polls, either.

4% moved from Bush to Kerry overnight.

So much for those push polls Gallup runs.

Bergen Record poll: Kerry 50 Bush 42 Nader 2....NJ comes back to reality. Dems in NJ reacted to the debates by coming home. I have witnessed numerous discussions in the last two days to back this up. Paul Fresh

The trend is clear however 11->5->-2. And in any case, correcting partyid to a more realistic value (slight Dem advantage) can hardly be deemed a bad thing. The worst that could be charged is that they deliberately skewed the earlier partyid to exaggerate the trend.
I guess this trend will continue after through the next debate and until the big Oct surprise.
If no suprise or no results therefrom, they will then have to resort to suppressing voter turnout in dem strongholds (i.e., cities) of key states with repub govs (e.g., OH, FL and NY; CA may be too far out of reach).

Wow, seems like a lot of Chicken Littles screaming "The Sky is Falling! The Sky is Falling!"

Frankly, I think they KNOW their candidate is flawed, and the debate on Thursday show the "Emperor has no clothes" as the split screens showed what Bush looks like when he thinks no one is looking.

I think they are trying to set up their excuse that the SCLM "stole" the election. Even if there is a major shift in party alignment, to include a massive Electoral College victory for Kerry, a Democratic take back of the Senate, and a virtually tied House, they will not face reality of how they have screwed up the country. The nation wants sanity back in Washington, not fantasy.

What's your feeling on Slate magazine's "Election Scorecard"? Does Bush really seem to have this advantage in electoral votes?

Even if they did oversample dems (but only by 20 more than republicans as opposed to nearly 100 more dems) it fits the party-ID numbers which means its' more accurate.

Where were you when they were oversampling for Bush?

Smooth Jazz-

You assert that Newsweek left out states such as Ohio. I gather they did in their first night of polling, since it was late at night, but they did poll them the next days. Here's there list of states, by regional area:

Republican states: AL, AK, CO, GA, ID, IN, KS, KY, LA, MS, MT, NE, NC, ND,
OK, SC, SD, TX, UT, VA, WY
Swing states: AZ, AR, FL, IA, ME, MI, MN, MO, NV, NH, NM, OH, OR, PA, TN,
WA, WV, WI
Democratic states: CA, CT, DE, DC, HI, IL, MD, MA, NJ, NY, RI, VT

The swing in Dems and Reps (a) is less than you had posted as so elsewhere; and (b) is about in line with what might have been expected from turnout in previous elections. The Dem/Rep split is worth noting, but is at least arguably more on target that that which came before.

Various-

About Kerry's response to the "global test" charge. The newest ad from the Kerry campaign gives two quotes from what he said in the debate and accuses (accurately to my mind) the Bush campaign of lying about his stance.

http://www.johnkerry.com/pressroom/releases/pr_2004_1003.html

This is timely and could well (a) counter the spin; and (b) build on the case that was made in the debate that the only arguments Bush is able to make are either trite, gross distortion, or both.

Smooth Jazz, are you copying and pasting messages from the Free Republic? How interesting, because when I tried to counteract their spin with my own (legitimate) analysis, I got labelled a troll and denied my posting privileges. Yet here you are posting their spin, and no one here feels the need to stop you. I think that definitely suggests that people at Donkey Rising (and other left-wing blogs) are more open-minded and realistic than at the Free Republic, where only like-minded opinions count.

[MOD: This question/proposal may be seen as provocative, but at the risk of wasting my time here, this interests me, so I'm hoping to hear what EDM and readers think]

This topic & the Molyneaux insight push us to think about how to get the "2-point conversion" team on the field, that is, what can Kerry/Edwards do to attract the Nader vote.

I realize it's popular to say Nader is insane and that anyone who would vote for him is a moron or naive, and this is the exact cognitive setting and set of tactics that fried Gore's ability to win those votes. Historically, it's very hard to win over a hard-core small candidate's support with dismissiveness or whingeing or acting as though those votes are an entitlement. It's not hard, however, to win them by co-opting the issues they care about.

I've been registering voters for about seven months, and I'm not industrial strength (hundreds), but more craft (17 so far, but I own them, keep in touch with them, get them to the polls, get them to try and register/talk to others). In engaging people, I find a lot of interest in Nader's stand on the issues (mostly trade/ jobs/ environment/ corporatism/ media concentration/ the War on Iraq), and I work with them respectfully to see if they could vote for Kerry in November even while they prefer Nader. I've converted two of five, for now.

The organized effort to keep Nader off the ballot undermines the chance to win over these voters, I believe (if Nader got Kerry taken of the ballot in your state, would it make you campaign for Nader?). But they are issue-oriented more than anything, meaning there's hope.

In how many states would a 1.5% or maybe even 2% uptick make a difference? And why is it not worth as much effort to harvest Nader, ALREADY committed Anti-Bush Junior, votes than it is to jello-wrestle with those who can't bring themselves to make up their minds even after seeing Bush Junior look befuddled and like a chimp about to pass gas for ninety minutes last week?

So what issues would Kerry/Edwards have to push to win the Nader voters? Announce on October 29 they'd make Nader A.G. or give him a choice of cabinet positions? Nader is pretty much a non-issue to moderates, so it's not like it would offend the undecideds. Or perhaps just a bold proposal on an issue the Nader core care about. Or other, but if so, what?

Or are there poll results that indicate the bulk of Nader voters can't be converted? (I'm skeptical having done it, but OTOH a sample of five isn't a sample at all, and I am doing it one on one and not as part of an industrial approach).

Since new numbers have not come out after the debates for the battleground states, you should take the polling numbers for the electoral college with a grain of salt at this point. I say this b/c the polls regarding who won the debate in the battleground states appear to mirror the national polls. What this will translate into with the still hurricane damaged Florida, the right leaning Ohio- who knows?

Also- great discussion on Air America about polling from Gallup and Zogby

While I would not look at scoreboards until the new post battelground state polls begin to come out, I would look at electoral-vote.com b.c. of the breakdown for Senate races which I am not sure is affected as much by national politics as local politics. ie, one thing that is definitely a good sign- Bush has no coattails right now. Another sign of weakness the number of competitive Dems in supposedly Republican strong holds.

In response to Jack Stark's comments:

Well Jack, the main reason (I think) that many Democrats have resorted to trying to keep Nader off the ballot and ridiculing his support is because of his complete and total unrepentance in helping W become president, combined with his tiresome line of "no difference between them."

Michael Moore apologized for doing his tiny bit to help Bush win, and admitted that Bush has been much wose than he expected. He acknowledges that Kerry has his drawbacks, but also acknowledges that any movement in the right direction is impossible so long as Republicans keep controlling the government. It's rational choice. He might like Nader better, but it's not only about who is the best. It's who is the closest to your views who is likely to win. And as you pointed out, many Nader supporters, presented with Moore's logic on this point, have switched. My formerly unrepentant Naderite friend was one of them.

Democrats are suspicious of Nader's anti-Bush credentials precisely because he ran. The fact that he actively ran even as almost all other left-wingers rallied behind the Democrats seems, to us partisans, to say something: that Nader does not really care about the policies he claims to favor. By trying to split the liberal vote, Nader is effectively saying that he doesn't care if Bush stays president. We partisans tend to think that any self-professed liberal who doesn't care if Bush stays president must be a bit off in the head. I know it probably isn't productive in converting Nader voters, but it's what most Democrats think.

Plus, we feel genuinely insulted by Nader's persistent suggestions that the parties are the same. When he says that, he's saying that my positions are indistinguishable from Tom DeLay's. When he says that, he's saying that I'm in bed with Grover Norquist. When he says that, he's saying that I secretly like George W. Bush. And those are fighting words to us.

But we're also angry because we feel betrayed. We've tried, whenever possible, to advance the causes Nader claims to represent. But the practical reality is that not all of those causes will get approved by the public all at once. When Nader runs, he's telling us that he doesn't appreciate what we've done for consumer safety and environmental laws. The predictable Democrat response was: "So we help him approve OSHA, the EEOC, and the EPA, and THIS is the thanks we get?"

I see your point of course, and it is well taken, but I thought I ought to tell you why Democrats are not exactly in a forgiving mood toward Nader.

Great news!!

Us Kerry supporters in Canada are really keeping our fingers crossed.

From what I've read, Kerry still isn't a wonderful candidate as far as US-Canada relations go. But as far as keeping the world a safe place, he is way better than Bush.

Thanks for the insight!

All the above discussion of the Dem/Rep breakdown on this poll is based on incorrect numbers. Please look at the caveat clearly stated in the press release -- the numbers of Democratic, Independent, and Republican respondents are raw unweighted numbers.

It's possible to back out the weighted party representation from the results that are provided for presidential preference by party, if you assume that the independent voters are unweighted. (It will probably make little difference if this assumption is wrong since the independents are so evenly split on presidential choice.) My calculation gives the weighted breakdown as 37.6% Democratic and 33.3% Republican. This is approximate since appreciable errors are introduced by the need to use Newsweek's numbers that are rounded off to the nearest percentage point.

One methodological issue that completely mystifies me is why this and other polls weight their sample among Democratic, Republican, and swing states. I don't see how this eliminates any kind of systematic error. You pay a significant penalty in introducing errors of various kinds by weighting to an additional variable. (This is called "overparameterization" in control theory.)

When the media giants were publishing their Gallup polls and Newsweek and TIME were also doing their thing with double digit leads for Bush after the GOP confab in NY, I wrote in this space that the media corps. and their polls had a commercial purpose to them and weren't to be trusted.

I still believe that. We need to see Zogby and Pew before we conclude that Bush is on the ropes. Kerry has much to do before he closes the deal with the voting public.

I'm most anxious to see the internals on the more trustworthy polls. I want to know how or whether Kerry has improved his position with uncorraled Dems and whether Bush has lost any ground with Repubs. Is Kerry improving his position with married women and Catholics.

Mostly I'm concerned whether the level of commitment to Kerry among African Americans is strong enough to assure a large enough turn out to match up or surpass the turn out of small town and rural white voters who will be flocking to Bush in great numbers. Has Kerry done a good job in reaching out to them? I don't have the sense that he connects with African Americans as well as Gore did. Is anyone out there who can give me comfort on that?

I'm sure this has already been submitted, but Gallup shows a tie in LV, Bush up by 2% in RV. That's a swing of 8% in LV, 7% in RV from the last Gallup poll.

Excellent news, confirming the Newsweek poll movement.

Say WHAT?

Newsweek: "All but erased Bush's lead..."

Local SF News: "Closed the gap...now in a dead heat..."

Molyneaux is right, and if anything understated the matter:

"If and when Kerry succeeds in narrowing or eliminating the polling gap between him and Bush, the media will report a “dead heat” when, in fact, Kerry will be positioned for victory..."

new gallup poll out, race is dead even. at 49-49. will be very interesting to see the internals of this poll, the breakdown of rep, dem's, and independants.

More good news! The new CNN/USA Today Gallup poll shows the race to be a deadheat:

(CNN) -- President Bush and his Democratic challenger, Sen. John Kerry, are about even among likely and registered voters in the latest CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll, released Sunday.

The poll showed Kerry and Bush tied at 49 percent each among likely voters interviewed. Among registered voters Bush had 49 percent and Kerry 47 percent. Independent candidate Ralph Nader was favored by 1 percent in each group.

The margin of error in each case was plus or minus 4 percentage points.

By contrast, Bush was ahead of Kerry among likely voters 52 percent to 44 percent in the Gallup poll conducted September 24-26. Among registered voters in that poll, the spread was 53 percent for Bush and 42 percent for Kerry. Nader had 3 percent among each group.

The latest poll talked with 1,012 adult Americans by telephone Friday through Sunday, after the presidential debate Thursday. Among those interviewed, 934 said they were registered voters and 772 indicated they were likely to vote.

"It's obvious that the debate helped Kerry. What's less obvious is how," CNN polling director Keating Holland said.

Other polls conducted after the debate also showed Kerry in a virtual tie with Bush. (Full story)

Interesting to see in today's Washington Post that Bush's staff had admonished him, in preparation for the debate, NOT to show the look of disdain they normally see in the White House. Which we all got to see.

NEW GALLUP POLL:

Read it and weep Republicans:

Kerry 49%
Bush 49%

Kerry is doing better in the Gallup poll now than he did after the Democratic convention.

In fact, this is the first time that Gallup doesn't have Bush ahead since early July.

AMERICA COMING TOGETHER...

HUGE INCREASE IN VOTER REG>..OFFICES SWAMPED in DEMO AREAS

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/10/04/politics/campaign/04vote.html?hp

ONly the lightest LV screen (how certain are you...) will pick this up and then only if the pollster does not use Dept of Elections databases for their sample selection as some do here in CA...


Those folks won't be in the RV lists for a week or two

What about the LA Times poll showing Kerry ahead 49-47. I have made a point of being skeptical but THREE POLLS each showing a bounce of 6 points or more suggest that this debate really HAD an impact. The question now is whether it can stick.

The coming days are going to be times of close study of the internals of all the polls, and shifting assessments on all those electoral-vote.com

Really important is the New York Times article about record registration. They said that ONE COUNTY in Nevada, I assume the most populous (Clark) had over 200,000 new registrants this year, more than double the figure for 2000. Now in a state with only 5 electoral votes, and if these are urban registrants heavily recruited by Democrats, that really signals a big shift for that crucial swing state. Ohio, PA and other areas also with huge registrations. My own rule of thumb is that if the Democrats manage to increase their net gain by 5% or so or more of the total RVs with new registrants in any swing state, they would normally be expected to get that swing state. What is the usual calculation of these things (that's pure intuition -- what do the pros say?)
[What I mean by 5% is that is that if in a state with 1 million RVs, the Dems get 70,000 new and Reps 20,000, thats a net gain of 50,000 dems, or 5%. Especially since I figure newly recruited registrants will be pursued and vote in at least as high numbers as most RVs, that would give Dems a 5% boost, so if the state was a swing state to begin with, then it would be expected to be in the Dem column.]
I still say Edwards needs to characterize flipflop template as "a mere spin" in the next debate, the Kerry and Edwards periodically in campaign, back it up, and at least they've reduced its harm by half. The danger is that this repeated mantra could chip away at their support unless countered

The new Gallup poll is out. It shows a tie. Kerry erased an 8 point Bush lead even though the poll is probably still, based on rev. of some of the results, loaded up with republicans.

In response to thecreature's comments:

Cogent, insightful, thoroughly laid out description of why Dems are passionate about Nader the Candidate. BUT...

BUT...
what about Nader's voters? I don't want to argue the math of TN and FL and Gore's decision to purge Clinton from his campaign and and and. I'm hoping to get insight into why Nader's voters are less worth harvesting than people who are (or claim to be) undecided.

The math of going after current Bush Junior voters is powerful (minus one from Red Army, becoming plus one in Blue Army equals +2). But after that anything we add is +1. So voters who want to vote for Nader, already committedly anti-Bush Junior, are worth as much in actuality as undecideds, who by their choice of "undecided" are creating the appearance of not-already-anti-Bush-Junior. The sale is already half-closed w/the citizens who say they prefer Nader, it seems to me.

I'm not arguing against anything you said, thecreature, just finding it another reinforcement of my sense that:

1) Bush Junior is more of an enemy to the country than Nader,

2) Democrats seem to focus more attention on bringing down Nader than his numeric significance merits,

3) Resulting in a counter-productive image/ campaign spin on his supporters that makes it harder to capture their votes.

My SENSE is, if those votes are too few to care about, who cares and let's not waste our time wasting ammo on Nader, or if they are (Nader cost Gore's win, not his campaign or post-elec or legal "strategy" or his willingness to blink first) enough to care about, let's get a positive set of tactics to harvest them and not just alienate them. Either/Or...I *think*.

Does anyone have any 2004 polling or demographic info that suggests attacks on Nader and his voters net us positive yield?

True enough Jack,

But then there's the persistent problem of people like that guy in the Washington Post's Outlook on Sunday.

People who, rather than look at the progress that's been made, instead whine about the progress that HASN'T been made. He claims he voted for Nader not because he didn't like the Democrats, but because they hadn't done quite enough for him to like them.

I honestly don't understand how he (or others like him) can even have such an arrogant political attitude. As if their personal problems ought to be so important that politicians should spend every bit of their attention only on them. Just because the Democrats don't aggressively court blacks (to use his own example) doesn't mean they don't have their interests at heart. Court the base and you annoy the moderates needed to win.

The choice I would present to any who are thinking of abandoning a major party (either one) because it isn't good enough (meaning it has done some but not enough) is the following choice:

You can get some of your agenda passed, or you can get nothing. What's it going to be?

Okay, thcreature.

The essence of your message is clear to me: "You can get some of your agenda passed, or you can get nothing. What's it going to be?"

Have you tested this on Nader voters (committed or leaning)? Has it seemed to work? All insight welcomed.

You also suggested: "Court the base and you annoy the moderates needed to win."

I'm agnostic on this issue. I wonder what issues buy more incremental moderate votes than lose incremental base votes. My gut says at some point we could get to a point where we're redefining "base"...that is we're moderate enough that those voters we called base don't consider themselves part of the base anymore. They are somewhat few in # than the moderates, but somewhat greater in passion -- I meet (perhaps just a regional drift) very many passionate undecideds or passionate moderates.

And are there any proven techniques beyond the specific one thecreature laid out for harvesting these voters?

Who are the 2 percent who are in polls favoring Nader? and how would Kerry go about getting their votes?

Per unit of effort, is mining part of that 2 percent more effective than mining the 4-8 percent who are in polls with no preference or the 40-50 percent in polls favoring Bush?

A progressive person who would give Nader a protest vote in 2004 lives in a different reality than mine. I have no idea how to communicate with that person.

On the other hand, I think the amount of effort that would be required to convert 50% of Nader voters to Kerry, yielding 1 percent of the vote would be better spent on people who are unsure, or Bush voters, just because there are so many more of those.

As for Nader, what is he doing? He is certainly not advancing progressive issues. I'm not sure if he is deliberately trying to help Bush, if he is mentally unbalanced and does not know what he is doing or if he is so egotistical that the notoriety he is getting is worth the risk of producing a Bush presidency.

Either way, I've already put too much thought into Nader. He is no longer a progressive if he ever was.

We're headed for a repeat of the 1960 squeaker, it seems, since the President did so poorly as a communicator in debate#1.

Here's the twist, however: 1960 was Kennedy's year, in part, because he was the more optimistic candidate, and Nixon was a pessimist. Bush is far more optimistic than Kerry. If he demonstrates that in the next 3 weeks, he'll be re-elected, in spite of losing the 1st debate bigtime. Kerry is a pessimist.

Clinton was optimistic and beat Bush 41; Bush 41 was more optimistic than Dukakis; Reagan was a "super-optimist" and re-directed the American political debate in both domestic and foreign policy!

Paul Richard Strange, Sr. Waxahachie Texas