Aug 19 2008

Is Obama Crashing In Polls? Updated!

Published by at 3:47 pm under 2008 Elections,All General Discussions

Major Update: Yep, Obama is in a major slide in at least one poll:

Barack Obama’s public image has eroded this summer amid a daily onslaught of attacks from Republican rival John McCain, leaving the race for the White House statistically tied, according to a Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll released today.

Far more voters say McCain has the right experience to be president, the poll found. More than a third have questions about Obama’s patriotism.

Overall, Obama holds a narrow edge over the Arizona senator, 45% to 43%, which falls within the poll’s margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points. In June, Obama was ahead by 12 points.

More striking than the head-to-head matchup, however, is the drop in Obama’s favorable rating in the run-up to his selection of a running mate and the Democratic National Convention next week in Denver.  

Obama’s favorable rating has sunk to 48% from 59% since the last Times/Bloomberg poll in June. At the same time, his negative rating has risen to 35% from 27%.

By comparison, McCain’s ratings have hardly budged during the same period: …

That is a 19% swing in favorability for Obama!

We all know it is not just the onslaught of GOP and McCain ads and comments, it is Obama’s flip-flops on issues near and dear to his liberal base, his pandering in front of the Germans without taking time to visit the injured troops (it is HIS job to make it happen despite any obstacles), his luke warm response to the Russian invasion of Georgia. Your opponent cannot get traction unless you give them the opening and the case is believable by the voters. Now I am still holding my crow on the side to see how the Gallup numbers go this week. But Obama has tons of money and he is still going backwards. – end update

I predicted on August 4th Obama would go into the Democrat Convention with bad poll numbers:

In one week McCain has gained 15 points with the independent middle of the electorate. That is a stunning change, and one I do not think is done playing out.  I suspect Gallup’s Daily Tracking Poll might show more erosion in the coming days (it seems to be a slower in picking up changes in the electorate than the Rasmussen Poll, which tends to show less volatility – go figure). Once the middle moves it will not move back again because we are heading into the conventions.

On August 12th I was beginning to prepare myself a hefty dish of crow as Obama rebounded somewhat when the Olympics started, but then I thought about it and doubled down on my prediction:

And that is why Obama’s current bounce in the polls may not be a good sign. It is clear Obama’s base is more motivated (and one might even say obsessed), so it would make sense that as attention moves away from politics for a few weeks Obama’s numbers would rise simply because of this extra energy in a small base.

But what comes up must come down, as we say in physics. And what this tells me is when attention does move from the Olympics to the elections, Obama’s numbers will drop as the polls start to get a more representative sample of opinions. And falling polls going into the Democrat convention will be played to the hilt on why Obama is destined to fail this fall.

I still have my plate of crow warming on the side, but news is breaking that a new LA Times poll is coming out today with bad news for Obama:

Which White House contender had the better summer?

A new Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll of registered voters across the country leaves little doubt about the answer.

We can’t reveal the precise figures yet; for that, check back at about 2 p.m. PDT (5 p.m. EDT). Suffice to say that the results will not alter the perception that — given a seemingly sunny political climate for Democrats – Barack Obama is under-performing nationally.

Check back here in a little over an hour (maybe longer depending on traffic) to see if I am eating crow or not!

16 responses so far

16 Responses to “Is Obama Crashing In Polls? Updated!”

  1. kathie says:

    The more that Obama dips in the polls, the greater the chance of him choosing Hillary I think.

  2. Ray_in_Aus says:

    As I said before, I support Hillary (actually the Democrats) but after seeing the Cult of the COLB in action and seeing the Obama supporters leaving the opposing arguments to be presented by Republicans and foreigners like myself, I think it would be bloody funny if he went down the drain in the polls.


  3. TomAnon says:


    I think you can put that crow back in the freezer.


  4. kathie says:

    Ray do you live here or in Australia? If you live here how long have you been in this country? Just trying to get a feeling of your background. Where do you come from in Australia?

  5. AJStrata says:

    Chilling it now Tom – don’t want it to go bad (just in case!)

  6. Ray_in_Aus says:

    kathie wrote:

    Ray do you live here or in Australia? If you live here how long have you been in this country? Just trying to get a feeling of your background. Where do you come from in Australia?

    I’ve always lived in the two southern states of Australia – Victoria and South Australia. I’m more interested in justice than politics, so I don’t care who’s in power, as long as they don’t over do it.


  7. WWS says:

    One of the best stories of the day came out of Australia.

    “Too cold for global warming relay.”

    “Climate change may be THE hot international issue of the moment but enthusiasm for the cause clearly wanes on a freezing Friday afternoon when the campaign moves to a mountain top where the wind chill factor is below zero.”

    I’ve seen a report that Australia is suffering through one of it’s coldest winters in a long time. Sounds like a little global warming might be a nice change. Stay warm!!!

    I should add that although July was hot, this is the most unusually cool August I have ever seen in Texas.

  8. kathie says:

    Thanks Ray, it helps me understand where you’re coming from.

    Politics is not always fair. The nuts on the internet have free rain to think up any conspiracy. Proving it is another thing. I think that the bias of our MSM makes the nuts more frantic. That being said there is a lot of good thinking that is expressed on the internet. I’m thinking of the Dan Rather story for one and blogs that are very thoughtful. Like this one.

    By the way your country has done great work in Iraq and Afghanistan. Your country’s support has been invaluable! Kathie

  9. Ray_in_Aus says:

    kathie wrote:

    Thanks Ray, it helps me understand where you’re coming from.

    Even if know where people are coming from and we agree on some of the big issues, it seems that if we keep digging we’ll find issues that create distance.

    For example I could know someone for a while then find out they are excessively racist or ‘nationalist’ or religious bigots or they adhere to some patently crazy notions. I’m not referring to stuff that is judged to be crazy – but stuff that really is.


    By the way your country has done great work in Iraq and Afghanistan. Your country’s support has been invaluable! Kathie

    The Prime Minister we had for a decade and who backed the U.S. after 9/11 (part of which he saw from a few thousand yards) did something that no one on the media seems to have given much attention to – assisting the U.S. without hesitation AND being first in the queue.

    He not only announced that the ANZUS treaty was automatically in force immediately the attack occurred – he did it without consulting his fellow Ministers or his government.

    It was quite some time before Iraq was invaded and there we had the usual posturing in the parliament and the media about whether the government would approve of military assistance in Iraq, but hardly anyone of his age or a bit younger doubted for a second that Australia would be there because of what their fathers and grandfathers had said about the massive Yank assistance in WWII.

    It was Prime Minister Howard’s chance to do what people of his generation wouldn’t think twice about – assist the U.S. if attacked, and unless the U.S. is attacked again in the next decade – probably the ONLY chance for decision makers in Australia to act without any big debate.

    Just before the invasion of Iraq the politicians here were still going through the ritual in Parliament about whether we would go or not, but we already had our commandos sneaking around Iraq doing their thing for weeks, although he had to pretend it wasn’t happening.

    Another thing he did, which was most extraordinary for a peace-loving country like Australia, was to announce to the world that when it comes to hunting terrorists and giving them some very unlucky days where nothing goes right for them, Australia would respect no country’s sovereignty in that quest.

    I have some gripes about other stuff he did (and didn’t do) but yes he did the right thing by backing the U.S. and promising never to quit with the military assistance until the job was done.

    As it turned out it seems that our military was never in harm’s way as much as U.S. troops were – or if they were, no snipers ever got them in their sights for long enough to do much damage.

    In Vietnam we were only paying our insurance premium, but Afghanistan and Iraq has been for (indirect) defence of the U.S.


  10. kathie says:

    Your right Ray. Howard never wavered, his speech was clear, he was courageous when many were not. Weather one agreed with the war or not, tho I’m sure ASIO had much the same intel that we did, everyone admires grit, and Australia and Australians have it in abundance.

    Some times you just have to do what you have to do, having faith that man is smart enough to make corrections if need be. But when a friend is in danger you stand by his side.

    So now we look at Georgia, attacked and destroyed, decimated by a much bigger neighbor for the purpose of sending a message to the Georgians about their perceived independence and to Europe about their oil and gas supplies. And where is old Europe, talking and intellectualizing and wondering. What can we do where we don’t loose anything? And if I had to guess, that is exactly what Obama is thinking. I think in this world it will take a lot of courage to lead this country, and to be a friend.

  11. Redteam says:

    but hardly anyone of his age or a bit younger doubted for a second that Australia would be there because of what their fathers and grandfathers had said about the massive Yank assistance in WWII.

    It was just  coincidental that I had just gotten a haircut in Albury by a barber that was a veteran of WWII and knowing I was an American, he said my haircut was free (I paid him anyhow) just a couple of weeks before 9/11. He told me stories of the war and how thankful he was for America’s assistance during that time.  Just before I left Australia a couple months later, I returned to visit him (just to see his reaction to 9/11) and it was just as you described(in that quote).  I gave him a good tip and thanked him for his support of America. (he was retiring at the end of that year).  But, I went to many places in Australia during the 3 months after 9/11 and it was the same all over.  I appreciated, and am a strong fan of, John Howard.

  12. Ray_in_Aus says:

    Here’s an interesting article about Gen. MacArthur when he came to Australia during WWII. There has been a bit of an outcry because the tiny railway station he stopped at has been allowed to fall into disrepair.

    He took charge of everything and promised to keep the bottom half this country at all costs. No one thought the top half could be saved.

  13. Ray_in_Aus says:

    Here’s an interesting story about Gen. MacArthur’s arrival in Australia in WWII. He promised to save the bottom half of the country at all costs.

  14. Terrye says:

    According to RCP McCain has taken the lead in electoral votes.

    I have always had my doubts about the way RCP adds up polls and divides them, but the trends are becoming more obvious.

    Now Obama will try to get “tough”, which with a Democrat usually means shrill and paranoid.

  15. […] Previously I posted on some terrible polling news for Obama as he slid 12 points against John McCain in the last month in the LA Times/Bloomberg poll. Now a Zogby Poll (forever unreliable, I know) shows a dramatic shift towards McCain as well: McCain leads Obama by a 46% to 41% margin. […]

  16. […] this is no way to limp into your party’s convention! I posted earlier (here and here) on a slew of polls showing Obama slipping against McCain. Even more polls are out this […]