Saturday, August 2

OBAMA CAMPAIGN STAGNATES

A stunning chart of the rolling average of polls compiled by Real Clear Politics shows that Obama's percentage of the vote when pitted against McCain has been stuck in a 2.5 point spread since last February. To the extent that the gap between the two has widened it has been mostly due to McCain losing support. McCain's total has varied between 47% last January and 41% the end of June, with a recent bounce to 44% while Obama's total has been stalled between 46% and 48%.

While we were aware of the Obama campaign becoming becalmed in recent weeks, we hadn't realized how far back the problem extended - since we don't save our own moving averages. In essence, Obama has failed to attract new voters since early this year and has relied primarily on McCain losing support. Right now, RCP has Obama at 46.5% and McCain at 43.9%. We have Obama four points ahead.

We have suggested from time to time that the problem with the Democrats is that they seek their votes and their money from two quite disparate sources. Even with the economy in the pits, the party is still looking for funds from the very places - Wall Street, large corporations etc - that got us into the current mess. This helps to explain why the Democrats and its candidate are so reluctant to propose dramatic (and appealing) new economic solutions. Yet, as the polls suggest, not doing so has done them little good and they are forced to rely on the inadequacies of their opponent rather than on their own virtues to maintain a slim lead.

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