Friday :: Jul 30, 2004

Zogby Indicates Trouble For Bush


by Steve

(Thanks to PollingReport.com for the graphic)

The first sets of snapshot polls from Zogby during, and after the convention are in, and there isn’t any good news for Bush in them. First, in a poll that measured preferences in a head-to-head match up taken through Wednesday night before Kerry’s acceptance speech, Kerry/Edwards have moved out to a five-point lead (48%-43%) over Bush/Cheney. The previous poll taken during the first week of July when Edwards was selected showed only a two-point Kerry lead (48%-46%). The biggest change in this poll from the previous one is the drop-off in support for Bush/Cheney, with the lost support moving to the undecided column, and not yet to the Kerry/Edwards column which is to be expected. But again, please note that this poll was done before last night’s speech and was done of likely voters, which will undercount those who didn’t vote in 2000 but plan to vote this year.

Secondly, in a poll that Zogby completed today after the effects of last night’s speech begin to be counted, Zogby reports that Bush is in trouble in the South, amongst key groups that Rove had been courting for years, and even in his own base.

The Bush campaign’s efforts to court voters in the Hispanic, Jewish, and Catholic communities seem to have fallen flat. Mr. Kerry is leading Mr. Bush by a similar margin to that which former Vice-President Al Gore won among Jewish voters in 2000. Mr. Bush is also running far behind his 2000 Hispanic total, with only 19% of the Hispanic voters supporting him, while Mr. Kerry is beating Mr. Gore’s total with 69%. Mr. Kerry is also running very strong among Catholics, topping Mr. Bush, 52% to 37%, showing that not only has Bush’s courting of them failed, but his use of wedge issues like gay marriage and partial birth abortion have failed to separate Catholic voters from Kerry.

Mr. Bush has also shown weakness in what is considered to be his best region, the South. While Kerry’s choice of Senator John Edwards gives him his biggest boost, his economic populism and courting of veterans are also key in his eroding of Mr. Bush’s support. Not only has Kerry now come to a tie with Bush in favorability in the South (55% for both), the Kerry-Edwards ticket has pulled ahead, 48% to 46% in the South. President Bush’s job performance is down to only 44% in the South, and only 43% of Southerners think the country is headed in the right direction.

Mr. Kerry is also performing well in Blue states, among Young voters and among Single voters. In the Blue states, Mr. Kerry is winning 50% to 38%, while in the Red States, Mr. Bush is only winning 48% to 46%. Among Single voters, Mr. Kerry is winning huge by a total of 69% to 19%. And among young voters – 18-29 year olds – a group Al Gore only won by 2 points in 2000, Kerry is winning in a landslide, 53% to 33%.

Also note that the gender gap has collapsed on Bush, with Kerry maintaining a nine-point lead over Bush with women, and now even leading Bush amongst men.

Zogby notes that Bush has failed to reach out to swing voters, is losing support in his base, and has passed up making any effort to reach out for Democratic voters while Kerry has shored up his base these past months. So while Rove has put in play his base-focused effort, it may cost Bush the election.

You know that the opposition is clueless when you see the White House focus on low taxes and spending restraint a day after the Democratic convention, as if Rove was running the 2000 campaign all over again. It seems that Rove and Bush have no idea on how to appeal to anyone other than their base and aren’t flexible enough to adapt to the race this year.

They have to trot out the usual drivel about Kerry making promises without specifying how he’ll pay for them, when it is clear that voters want solutions and action on domestic issues, not excuses for doing nothing. How exactly does an appeal based on taxes and spending excite swing voters when polls show these voting groups want action on health care, education, and other domestic needs?

Is the White House political operation so bereft of ideas to appeal to swing voters that the best they can do a day after Kerry blasted them on a variety of domestic failings is to say that we have no solutions, have not offered any ourselves, but all we know is that the other guy's ideas will cost a lot?

You're going to lose Karl, and one other thing:

You're vastly overrated to boot.

Steve :: 11:24 PM :: Comments (8) :: Digg It!