When Is A Battleground State No Longer A Battleground State?

Quinnipiac University, The Washington Post and The Wall St. Journal have released their new "Battleground State" polls and, well, let's just say they might need to redefine their terms. Certainly by 2004 standards, Colorado, Michigan, Wisconsin and Minnesota would be classic battleground states. Colorado went for Bush 52-47, Michigan went for Kerry 51-48, Minnesota went for Kerry 51-48 and Wisconsin barely went for Kerry 50-49.

We're not in 2004 anymore.

Colorado(1351 LVs, June 17-24, MOE +/- 2.7%)

Obama 49
McCain 44

Michigan(1411 LVs, June 17-24, MOE +/- 2.6%)

Obama 48
McCain 42

Minnesota(1572 LVs, June 17-24, MOE +/- 2.5%)

Obama 54
McCain 37

Wisconsin(1537 LVs, June 17-24, MOE +/- 2.5%)

Obama 52
McCain 39

Obama is overperforming Kerry in Colorado by 10%, in Michigan by 3%, in Minnesota by 14% and in Wisconsin by 12%. The keys: Obama wins independents in every single state (by double digits in three of them) and holds onto 2004 Kerry voters much better than McCain holds onto Bush voters.

If I've said it once I've said it a thousand times, the least Obama will do...should do...this year is hold onto Kerry states. If pollsters want to test true battlegrounds in 08, they'd be well-advised to put polls into the field in states that went for Bush in 04 such as Virginia and Ohio, certainly moreso than some of the tight Kerry states such as Minnesota and Wisconsin.

Tags: 2008 Presidential election, Barack Obama, Colorado, John McCain, Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin (all tags)



Re: When Is A Battleground State No Longer A Batt

This is shaping up pretty good.

by John in Chicago 2008-06-26 07:14AM | 0 recs
Agreed, but...

...it's amusing to watch the media operate with an outdated narrative. It's like watching a man shift about in a suit that he no longer fits into.

Maverick McCain?
Red and Blue States?

Not so much anymore.

by iohs2008 2008-06-26 08:21AM | 0 recs
Re: Agreed, but...

Its extremely amusing. Just as amusing as watching Obama outmaneuver and rise above the crap story lines and talking points the media and the GOP try to throw out there.

by John in Chicago 2008-06-26 08:59AM | 0 recs
And don't forget the Obama haters on our side too

They think they're getting the upper hand on him, and then he shifts his weight and throws them to the mat.

I feel he's in a precarious position: he cannot make a mistake. Sure, McSame can make gaffe after gaffe, but Obama has to be perfect.

And so far, he has been.

by iohs2008 2008-06-26 10:52AM | 0 recs
Re: And don't forget the Obama haters on our side

This is always true of the Democratic candidate.  

I think some of the supposed gaffes only make the media look ridiculous.  He seems to have his finger on the country's pulse and speak their language a lot better than Gore or Kerry.  

by nintendofanboy 2008-06-27 06:11PM | 0 recs
Re: Agreed, but...

Good god the media is absolutely terrible.  I didn't believe it could get this bad, but it has.  No mention of Iraq anymore even though we are smack dab in the middle of an oil crisis.

No one even mentions that oil prices and Iraq are directly connected to one another, along with the falling dollar.  Time to force the media conglomerates to divest their assets.

by agpc 2008-06-26 04:20PM | 0 recs
Re: Agreed, but...

Actually it is worse than "no mention of Iraq", they are actually framing the debate as "the surge is working".  Well trying too anyway.

I think it will continue to be a good issue for Obama, since it undermines the "how are we gonna pay for it" arguments against needed social programs he will be proposing.

"We can provide X for a fraction of what we are wasting in Iraq" will be key.

FOr the American people it is too late for the War to be "working" now.

by nintendofanboy 2008-06-27 06:15PM | 0 recs
Re: When Is A

I'm gonna need more November celebratory booze.

by Reaper0Bot0 2008-06-26 07:16AM | 0 recs
Re: When Is A Battleground State No Longer A Batt

It's still early. But it looks good.

by Makey 2008-06-26 07:22AM | 0 recs
Re: When Is A Battleground State No Longer

I said it in the diaries and I will say it here

as one of the MN posters here we always say that MN will go to Obama, when that SUSA said it was a 1 point race, we call bull. MN is Obama country, I don't care if its by 1 point or by 10 Obama will take MN.

The ONLY reason we have a republican governor is because BOTH elections Pawlenty ran against a democrat and a 3rd party, thus the democratic vote was diluted between 2 candidates allowing the GOP to win it. this will NOT happen for a presidential election, this is why though Pawlenty was our governor we voted for Kerry in '04.

without a 3rd party candidate to dilute the democratic vote here, elections will look just like Amy Klobachars senate race, Dems take this state.

now Coleman is another problem, Franken is not well known, and how bad Coleman's record is, is also not to well known.

I am more worried about that senate race then I am about the presidential race. I am hoping a huge Obama turnout will help Franken defeat Coleman.

MN is Obama Country.

by TruthMatters 2008-06-26 07:34AM | 0 recs
Re: When Is A Battleground State No Longer

I agree.  Never believed Obama was in any danger there.  Hey, keep us updated on Franken, eh?  I love that guy!

by fogiv 2008-06-26 08:08AM | 0 recs
Franken's gonna do fine

Up until a couple of weeks ago he was concentrating on delegates.  When Minnesota at large meets Al and his family, they'll fall in love with them.

Al will win.

by lojasmo 2008-06-26 08:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Franken's gonna do fine

When he announced, I figured him for a shoe-in, but I don't know the MN political scene at all.

by fogiv 2008-06-26 08:55AM | 0 recs
Re: Franken's gonna do fine

Franken's running into a buzzsaw.

Because he is a nationally-known Progressive figure, the GOP's HateMachine has been in full swing flinging anti-Franken crap all over MN for months.

They've been trying to nail his ass to the wall, and national right-wing figures like Limbaugh, Hannity, Glenn Beck, O'Reilly, NewsMax, TownHall, pretty much the entire array of HateMedia that commands serious audiences in the tens of millions is looking to hype anti-Franken issues.

They've embarrassed him with crap about his career, painting him as a pornographer whose work appeared in Playboy, painting him as an irresponsible businessman who owes back taxes in five or six states, painting him as a Liberal carpetbagger looking for a free ride to Washington, and some of it has stuck.

Franken had been running within the margin of error against Coleman, a freaking moron and Bush-lover but well known in MN, and he's lost almost 10 points and is now in trouble.

He needs to find and sharpen up his message, and he needs money badly to counteract the flood of anti-Franken media buys.

by dembluestates 2008-06-26 10:46AM | 0 recs
Re: Franken's gonna do fine

Thanks for the info.  I'll hunt up his site and donate today.

by fogiv 2008-06-26 11:26AM | 0 recs

on November 5th, early morning.

by NY Writer 2008-06-26 07:38AM | 0 recs
Make it MidDay

I'll still be hung over from the Victory Party.

by parahammer 2008-06-26 07:42AM | 0 recs
Re: When Is A Battleground State

And North Carolina!

by Nathan Empsall 2008-06-26 08:27AM | 0 recs
Re: When Is A Battleground State No Longer A Batt

Some of the most encouraging numbers in these polls are what they show about the 18-34 group (eg. in MN Obama is beating McCain by 30 points).  This election is likely see as large a generational split as occurred during the primaries.  

by IncognitoErgoSum 2008-06-26 08:27AM | 0 recs

CO still looks swingish to me. The spread between OB and MC is the same as the BU-KE numbers.

Lets also take this whole argument with a grain of salt, please, since we are comparing the actual vote in 2004 with polling done in the election preseason. Things wont start to really shake out towards their final configuration until the debates have occurred. Until then all you are really measuring in this comparison is name ID.

by azizhp 2008-06-26 08:34AM | 0 recs
Re: Colorado

So are you saying that Obama has greater name ID then McCain?

by BDM 2008-06-26 08:43AM | 0 recs
Colorado will not go for McCain.

Colorado has nearly a 50/50 split between Dems and Republicans but of those Republicans many are fiscal conservatives (excepting the wacky evangelical enclaves) who can't stand what has happened to the party.  I expect a number of crossovers and a record turnout for Dems.

If I have to personally drag every single Democratic voter to the polls in November then so be it.  

by GFORD 2008-06-26 09:51AM | 0 recs
CNN will look at these numbers

And tell us it means that they are all "lean McCain".

by RandyMI 2008-06-26 09:23AM | 0 recs
Deja vu

The map is starting to shape up a little like the fictional Santos-Vinnick race on the West Wing with a few exceptions. Little did the producers know at that time we would have an elderly "maverick" Republican running agaisnst a fairly young Democrat of color.

by RandyMI 2008-06-26 09:27AM | 0 recs
West Wing nailed it

I've too have been thinking about the amazing number of parallels to the fictional election in the West Wing, and how they were unbelievably prescient.

I mean, even the pairing - Santos (the young, minority, technocratic progressive from the middle of the country) and Vinnick (the cranky Republican from the West who has bucked his party at times).

Santos went up against an "inevitable candidate" (Bingo Bob Russell) and one with name recognition but was damaged goods (John Hoynes), and a slew of other smaller candidates like Rafferty (who was the only one pushing single-payer).

Among the important wedge issues during their primary was drivers licenses for illegal immigrants.  (Which many argue caused the inevitability of Clinton crack.)

Vinnick was against ethanol and got beat down in Iowa, but in an open GOP field won early and the Democrats were still battling it out beyond super Tuesday.

And of course, the weirdest part about all of this - the writers based Matt Santos loosely on Barack Obama.

by barath 2008-06-26 09:53AM | 0 recs
Re: When Is A Battleground State No Longer A Batt

The only reason MN was so close in 2004 was that (as much as I liked him) Kerry was a pretty weak national candidate. I think Gore could have won 2004.. but oh well.

MN will vote for Obama... it has been a hell of a long time since MN did not vote for a Dem (The 1972 Nixon blowout), 36 years, and I don't see that streak ending this year.

by notedgeways 2008-06-26 09:34AM | 0 recs
Its too early to put any stock at all in polls

no definitions should change. Polls are interesting, but mostly worthless now except overtime to show trends.

by gak 2008-06-26 09:36AM | 0 recs
Alaksa Update

Charlie Cook just shifted Alaksa from "Solid Republican" to "Likely Republican" in the presidential race.

by RandyMI 2008-06-26 09:37AM | 0 recs
Cool, huh?

It's barely pink on the fivethirtyeight.com map.  Loving it!

by GFORD 2008-06-26 09:53AM | 0 recs
Re: When Is A Battleground State No Longer A Batt

I would also note the size of these polls (and the resulting low MOE).  Good stuff.  

Certainly this poll backs up the Obama campaign's position that Minnesota is not a battleground state.  

Where's Nekkid? And BJJ fighter?  Don't they want to discuss these polls too?  They were so eager to discuss the national gallup poll that had it 45-45.  

by bosdcla14 2008-06-26 09:41AM | 0 recs
Re: When Is A Battleground State No Longer A Batt

Not so much.

by niksder 2008-06-26 11:33AM | 0 recs


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