Star Wars has a reference for everything:
We mention this because some of the most reliable polling firms have released polls in the last few days since the Democratic Convention, and they’ve contained excellent news for the President.
CNN/Opinion Research Obama +6
Gallup Tracking Obama +5
Even the Republican-leaning Rasmussen Reports (which we don’t like because they use automated polling, not the more reliable live interviews) shows Obama +5.
To get a real sense of the possible shift in the race, check out the Gallup poll:
And here is how Nate Silver at FiveThirtyEight sees the trend of the Electoral College Vote:
So why did we quote Han Solo? For the first time, really, in this election we sense some real optimism and enthusiasm from Progressives. Maybe it is justified. After all, the Republicans seem to be in full panic mode. Romney’s pollster even put out a new memo that said that – all polling evidence to the contrary – “the basic structure of the race has not changed significantly.”
Our worry is that the Democrats will start to get cocky.
You should read all polls at this stage of the election skeptically. A polling bounce is just that – a bounce. That means that the polls will inevitably shift back towards Romney a bit. And, just based on statistics, in about a week or so we will see at least one poll showing Romney back in the lead. This will lead to media horse-race stories about how Romney is “surging.” Then there will be some panic among Democrats.
Our advice: don’t let the polls get you too high or too low.
And, while the President’s campaign matched Romney in fundraising last month, the Republicans maintain a huge advantage in SuperPac money. The Daily Beast a couple of days ago explained:
The Mitt Romney-associated super PAC Restore Our Future has outraised the Obama-associated Priorities USA Action by a 5–1 margin, despite Priorities’ raising a personal best $10 million last month. This is indicative of the unequal playing field in Election 2012. Conservative super PACS and outside groups have raised $248 million—nearly four times the $65 million raised by their liberal counterparts.
What this all means is that there is still a lot of work left to do, especially here in Ohio. But take this one thing from the polling shift: this hard work might just be paying off; somebody out there is listening. The alternative is that we could end up like the Commander of the Death Star:
Officer: “We’ve analyzed their attack, sir, and there is a danger. Should I have your ship standing by?”
Governor Tarkin: “Evacuate? In our moment of triumph? I think you overestimate their chances.”