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One Last Look at the Polls in Florida and Ohio

By Alan Abramowitz

Florida and Ohio are the keys to the 2004 election. If John Kerry carries one of them, he has an excellent chance of winning. If he carries both of them, as I believe he will, he is almost certain to win. Instead of just averaging all of the polls, let's combine them all, based on the actual numbers of respondents in each sample of likely voters. Remember, I'm looking at likely voters here, but Kerry generally does better among registered voters and in this high turnout election, the registered voter results probably give a better picture of what is going to happen. But many polls do not report results for registered voters, so we're stuck with the likely voter numbers.

Here's what they show. In Florida, there have been 12 polls since October 15 with a combined n of 9526 likely voters. George Bush is supported by 47.3 percent, John Kerry by 46.3 percent. So Bush is still well below the crucial 50 percent mark generally needed by an incumbent.

In Ohio, there have been 11 polls since October 15 with a combined n of 9034 likely voters. John Kerry is supported by 47.9 percent, George Bush by 47.4 percent. Again, Bush is not close to the 50 percent mark and is actually trailing slightly in this combined sample of likely voters.

With a huge turnout expected tomorrow and with even a small undecided break toward the challenger, we should all be celebrating tomorrow night.

Comments

Okay pollsters.... can you really just add together polls like that? I suppose it makes sense, unless there's been some kind of external event that would cause a huge swing to one candidate in recent days. I guess we find out tomorrow.

Very interesting Alan - let's wait and hope for tomorrow.

david

Mystery Pollster has an interesting take on the best poll for OH, which has it as 50-50 as it can be, with a 2% margin of error. That's gonna be the closest state of all, where the GOP challenges can hurt. And they're backed by a Republican Court of Appeals.

Other than the lines, voting is going smoothly in the largest democratic polling place in Cincinnati Ohio.
I was calling folks this morning to make sure they voted and many said they had never gotten a call from the republican party at all during the campaign.

I think they are overestimating or overselling their GOTV effort in Ohio.

The Zogby website today is looking at Bush + 3 in FL and a tie in PA.

Does FL include early voting?

Is the PA tie a statistical anomally?