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Author: tamhas Big gold star, 5000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 74297  
Subject: Re: NC, VA, FL Called for Romney. Date: 10/12/2012 12:39 PM
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Still too simplistic Tinker and too quick. I have covered all of this already.

Romney clearly got a big bounce from the debate and the press immediately following. There are suggestions that it may have been as much as 5 or 6 points for a day or two. There are indications that this bounce has faded. Most or all of the polls cited there are tracking polls, meaning that they cover a rolling period of 3, 5, or 7 days. That means that it takes a while for a bounce and fade to work its way through to the new numbers. So yes, as of right now, Romney's position is significantly improved over where it was pre-debate.

There are indications that some of this is enhanced enthusiasm on the part of the Republican voters making them more likely to respond to polls and more likely to be classified as likely voters. That can be significant in an actual election, of course, since it may make them more likely to actually vote, but it is not so much a change of decision as it is a change of enthusiasm, which is more fragile and more likely to shift, e.g., if Democrats are heartened by Biden's performance or if the next presidential debate has a different character.

So, I am not pretending that there has been a shift, just warning you not to be too cocky about the amount of certainty to attach to it.

Moreover, as I have also said before, there is about a 2 point difference between what the national tracking polls are telling us vs what the state polls are telling us. There are several possible explanations for this and we don't really have the data to decide. It is enough, however, to put Obama still on top and this is reflected in the electoral college numbers I cited. One indication of this is that Nate Silver now has a 5.2% probability that Romney wins the popular vote but loses the electoral college. Prior to the recent shift that and the reverse number were always down in the 1-2% range at most.
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