Mind the gap

Byline: | Category: 2012 | Posted at: Sunday, 4 November 2012

The Pew organization has just posted its final poll before the election.  It shows an Obama lead of 50-47. 

Here is one astounding result from the Pew poll that I think best explains why it is so difficult for polls to project this race:   Among those not planning to vote, Barack Obama leads 65-23, a margin of 42 points (Q: 8a).  With likely voters, this same poll has Obama up by only 3.  That’s a gap of 39 points, and therefore, where a polling company draws the line between those who will vote and those who will not, is the single greatest determiner of the poll’s result. 

(BTW, I had already written this gap into my fifth scenario that I will post tomorrow since I had already determined that there was a gap; I just didn’t know how large that gap really was until today.  You can see all five scenarios here.)

Looking at Obama’ enormous lead with this demographic, I can certainly understand why he has focused his campaign on turning out the vote instead of winning over the independents.  But will it work?

Here is reason for the Obama campaign to be concerned:  of the registered voters interviewed for this poll, 97% of them said that they have already voted or will do so (Q: PLAN1).  That would make 2012 one of the highest turnout elections in the history of the United States.  Undoubtedly, some of that 97% is lying.  If those not telling the truth are more  like their politically inactive but honest counterparts who support Obama by 42 points, then their absence in the voting booth will leave Barack Obama a one-term president.

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One Response to “Mind the gap”

  1. Lorenz Gude Says:

    Ah Ha! So that is why the Democrat’s ‘ground game’ is so important. In my severely limited view from Perth, Western Australia it was that first debate that apparently made people feel comfortable really showing their support of Romney. Unless all those large crowds at Romney rallies exist only in the fevered imaginations of Republican bloggers looks likely to perform well in the real polls.