Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

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Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Monday, September 15, 2008

The McCain/Palin ticket playing in NY? Say it ain't so, Barry

While checking out news sites today I ran across an interesting story in the New York Post. It seems that John McCain has gained a significant amount of ground in New York, much to the chagrin of the Obama campaign:

BOOSTED by the selection of Sarah Palin as his running mate, Republican John McCain has experienced a surge of support among women in heavily Democratic New York state - where he has closed the gap with Barack Obama, new private polls show.

The internal Republican and Democratic polls, details of which were provided to The Post, have stunned members of both parties - and produced deep worries among Democrats.

One great concern for Democrats is that the data show a continuous movement toward the McCain-Palin ticket by women, a majority of whom traditionally favor Democrats.

The movement by women toward McCain is being credited to Democratic attacks on Alaska Gov. Palin, last week's "lipstick on a pig" crack by Obama and to the continuing unhappiness by female Democrats over Obama's failure to pick Hillary Rodham Clinton as his running mate.

"If it winds up being tight in New York, that means McCain wins the election nationally," said a prominent Democrat familiar with some of the polling data.

A prominent Republican familiar with the results said, "It really is something, because we just assumed Obama would carry such a heavily Democratic state like New York with no difficulty."

The private polls have consistently shown the Obama-Biden ticket still leading but with less than 50 percent of the vote in a state where Democrats outnumber Republicans by over 2.3 million voters.

What's with the change? Well, let's look at the obvious factors. Women in NY aren't happy that Obama didn't choose Hillary as his running mate. In NY she is more popular than Chuck Schumer. Toss in Charlie Rangel's recent exposure on his tax evasion (it's not a mistake folks, and his "my wife does the taxes" excuse isn't washing with voters), and it's playing into the "anti-politician" mood in the country right now. And we can even throw in Eliot Spitzer's antics that brought him down as contributing to the mood.

The Post article cites the Siena College poll that Captain Ed picked up today and lays out the situation that the Obama camp is facing right now:

Seven weeks until Election Day, the race for President has tightened in New York, with Sen. Barack Obama (D-IL) leading Sen. John McCain (R-AZ) 46-41 percent among likely voters, according to a new Siena (College) Research Institute poll released today. Obama’s five point lead is down from eight points in August, 13 points in July and 18 points in June, when he led 51-33 percent. On a series of six questions concerning current issues in the campaign – economy, Iraq, terrorism, health care, America’s position in the world, and education – likely voters believe Obama will do a better job on four. Conversely, out of six attributes voters often look at in choosing a candidate – compassion, patriotism, experience, intelligence, integrity, and leadership – New York’s electorate gives the edge to McCain on four.

“Although New York has long been regarded as a ‘safe’ state for the Democrats in presidential politics, likely voters in the Empire State are currently only giving Senator Obama a five-point cushion,” said Steven Greenberg, spokesman for the Siena New York Poll. “The conventions are over. The running mates are set. And as voters begin to focus on the race, New York’s overwhelming Democratic enrollment advantage is not reflected in how voters tell Siena they plan to vote.”

Captain Ed breaks down the numbers that are hurting Obama right now:

McCain has made significant gains in New York largely on national security and personal attributes. He wins on terrorism, 54-33, and edges Obama in ensuring American strength, 47-41. McCain obliterates him on personal qualities, especially patriotism (59-21), experience (73-18), and perhaps most unsettling for Team O, integrity (43-38).

In other words he wins on the attributes that a status-quo weary nation is looking at. The four issues Obama leads McCain on in the Siena poll are likely to shrink as we get closer to Election Day. This puts NY as a state officially in play, and that's what has the Obama camp worried. Furthermore, the down-ticket races aren't looking good either, and that might have something to do with Schumer's involvement in causing IndyMac to fail, Rangel's tax problems, and the Spitzer scandal. When these stories came to light, it was the wrong time for them. It put doubt in the minds of voters that the Democrats might not be the right party to lead the nation. Given the 9% approval Congress has, we think that has contributed to the shift int he polls, as well.

Things aren't looking good. Obama needed $100 million this month, and he only netted $66 million which only gave him an additional $11 million cash on hand. If this forces Obama to shift his sights to NY in an attempt to make sure it's secure that means he yanks money out of key battleground states that he's nearly neck-and-neck with McCain in. Surely this can be chalked up to the excitement among voters about Sarah Palin's presence on the McCain ticket.

Publius II


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