By Dave Andrusko
First, thanks to all of you for the kind words about NRL News Today, particularly our attempt to keep you abreast of the latest polling data. If you look back at the last month of our stories, you will see two constants.
We kept making the point that given the enormous lead Mitt Romney had among Independents, the only way President Obama could possibly be ahead in the polls was if the surveys interviewed many more Democrats than Republicans on the highly dubious theory that the Democrats will enjoy a turnout advantage of up to ten points, larger even than Obama enjoyed in 2008.
Which is why we closed one story last week (written prior to the debate) with “(a) stay focused on the basics, (b) don’t believe the nonsense the increasingly partisan ‘mainstream media’ is spewing, and (c) don’t be surprised in two weeks or so if we aren’t told, geez whiz, maybe this race really CAN go either way.”
But it didn’t take two weeks; it didn’t take two days. It only took only one disastrous debate performance by a woefully unprepared President who joked in advance about being required to do his “homework” to completely change the narrative. Now Obama is being crushed even by those who heretofore had doted most uncritically on him for being thumped by Romney.
Now, all bets are off. Mr. Romney is ahead a raft of polls—Pew, Gallup, PPP, Rasmussen, to name just four—and is rapidly closing the advantage Mr. Obama had enjoyed in so-called “swing states.”
For today, I’d like to elaborate on something we have talked about over and over and over again: the aforementioned Romney advantage among Independents. Christian Heinze at The Hill newspaper put together the latest numbers and, woe and behold, Romney is stomping the President among Independents. Here’s the summary from The Hill:
“Fueling his current polling surge, Mitt Romney’s numbers with indies [Independents] are just getting remarkably good.
a. IBD/ITP poll released today: Romney 52% Obama 34%.
b. Pew poll, released yesterday: Romney 46% Obama 42%.
c. Politico/GW poll, released yesterday: Romney 51% Obama 35%.
d. CNN, released last week: Romney 49% Obama 41%.
e. National Journal, released October 3: Romney 49% Obama 41%.”
But almost as important as what Heinze rightly calls “one of the most under-reported stories” is his next two sentences.
“Now having said that, Romney has done well this entire cycle with independents, but not enough to overcome turnout models that suggested much, much higher Democratic turnout.
“But now he’s killing it so soundly that it’s enough to overcome higher Democratic turnout. In fact, in ARG’s poll of Ohio today, Dems are sampled at +9% over Republicans, but Romney wins indies by 20%, which is enough to inch ahead, overall, 48%-47%.”
Think about that amazing, even stunning statement. Despite a poll that sampled 9% MORE Democrats than Republicans in Ohio, Romney is now ahead because of an overwhelming lead among Independents. The obvious conclusion—which Heinze doesn’t draw—is that if there is anywhere near parity in turnout between Democrats and Republicans, President Obama is in a real dilemma.
Conclusion? Actually, two conclusions. First, nothing stays the same, ever, and fortunes can turn on a dime. For example, the President cannot possibly be as inept in the next two debates as he was in Denver and the press will joyfully announce “he’s back.” And there will also be a concerted effort by the media to separate Romney from his supporters.
Second, the genius of President Obama going all the way back to his primary fight with Hillary Clinton is that when he seems about to reach a tipping point and tumble inexorably downward, he figures out a way to rally.
So, however good things look at this minute for the Romney/Ryan team, pro-lifers must work harder than ever. The next three+ weeks will be wild.
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