Daily Polling Shows McCain Gains

Yesterday, I noted that the two major tracking polls showed a tie in the national race for President. I wanted more recent state polls in order to validate those national result. Today, they started coming in.

First, if you add any pollster site to your blogroll, it should be fivethirtyeight. Yes, he’s an Obama supporter but he’s better at working with this data and presenting it than anyone else. He’s the Michael Barone of political statistics. He, too, sees today’s state polls as giving more weight to the national shift over the last two weeks.

Second, we have two national telephone poll giving McCain a lead today: Rasmussen and Zogby put the race at McCain +1. Zogby’s telephone polls went from Obama +10 in early July to McCain +1 this week. Rasmussen’s tracker went from a tie to McCain +1. However, Gallup went from Obama +1 to Obama +3 so not every national poll went McCain’s way today.

Third, we have the state by state data that confirms a national movement in McCain’s direction. See below the fold for data:

McCain 50 (47)
Obama 44 (45)

This is a shift toward McCain since the last SUSA poll in Feb. More importantly, it’s a shift from three recent pollsters who have shown Obama up 2 (Rasmussen, Quinnipiac, and PPP (D)). Considering McCain has spent $0 in FL while Obama has spent $5 million (more than any other state), it is great news for McCain that he still holds a small lead.

AZ (Rasmussen):
McCain 52 (49)
Obama 36 (40)

Here, McCain shot ahead by 16 points up from a 9 point lead in late June. Other pollsters in May and June showed a 8-10 point lead. McCain’s approval ratings are also way up in AZ where he now has fav/unfavs of 71/26 (+45). Obama, by contrast, is at 43/55 (-8) in this state that some Ds were making noises about. There are several down ballot races in AZ where a stronger than usual GOP showing could help carry GOP Congressmen over the line.

Unrelated to the Presidential race, Ward Connerly’s Civil Rights referendum is supported 46-27 with 27% undecided. McCain support the anti-racial preference initiative; Obama opposes it.

AL (Rasmussen):
McCain 55 (51)
Obama 37 (36)

Here, McCain gained a few points since June. The state is not in play, but the 2-5 point improvement shows that the national shifts are showing up around the country.

McCain 38 (30)
Obama 47 (53)

The shift from early June is massive. Obama’s +23 position shrinks to +9. In March through May, MA was polling very closely with Obama leading in low single digits. Since May that widened to over +13 for Obama in every poll until this one. The shift may not actually be 14 points, but it is definitely in McCain’s direction and more evidence that the national shift is real and it is affecting states.

CT (Rasmussen):
McCain 36 (35)
Obama 51 (52)

This is small enough it could be sample error. But the two point shift matches the small shift we are seeing elsewhere. I did not want to pick and choose the best data, CT is the smallest shift in McCain’s direction of state polls released today.

So now I would like to see some actual swing state polling (besides FL). OH, MI, PA, NH, IA, CO, VA, and NM polling in the post-McCain bounce era would help us understand where the election sits today.

Obama is still the favorite. He is still ahead. But the lead is narrow and surmountable.