Day By Day

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Dude..., Where's My Convention Bounce?

Well, that was quick! Obama's convention "bounce" has disappeared. Polls taken at the end of the convention had showed him 4-8 points ahead of McCain, but the nomination of Sarah Palin on the following day seems to have completely erased that lead. On Saturday Zogby reported that McCain had recaptured the lead over Obama by two points, 47% to 45% [statistically a dead heat]. [here]

What seems to have happened in the past few days is that both candidates have managed to unite their fractured parties and are well positioned to go into the final struggle. Both parties are showing an enormous degree of enthusiasm. Both tickets look like winners to their constituents. The internecine wars of the past few months are over.

That is probably good news for the Republicans. Ever since WWII Republicans have had a natural draw of about 52% of the electorate in presidential contests while Democrats draw about 47%. These figures are remarkably stable over time. Democrats are competitive in presidential elections only when Republicans are divided [think Ross Perot] or when some national trauma [like Kennedy's assassination or Watergate] disturbs the normal political balance. Head to head in a normal year a unified Republican Party will invariably win the presidency.

The choice of Sarah Palin has, at least for now, unified the Republican Party and, as a result, for the first time, John McCain looks like a winner.


CNN poll -- has Obama ahead by one point, essentially a dead heat. Sarah killed the convention bounce.