From Real Clear Politics:
I've been criticized a great deal for reporting bad polling data. There's an assumption that I revel in it and blog the data because I a bitter Clintonistas who hasn't gotten over Hillary's loss. My assurances that I was supporting Obama were ignored as certain people here insisted I was cherry-picking bad news to report. I've been told:
"Get over it, dead-ender!"
"The primaries are over!"
"You want him to lose!"
"Go back to NoQuarter!"
To those who doubt my sincerity, I ask, "How do you explain this data?"
(a) RCP is a bitter pro-Clinton organization, OR
(b) some of you need to take off the rose-colored glasses, stop attacking the bearers of bad news, and realize that this election is not going to be a cakewalk.
I want Obama to win, and when I see people high-fiving one another for a landslide that hasn't happened yet, I'm going to call them out on it. I'm going to point out potential weaknesses. It's not because I don't want him to win. It's because I'm a gay American without equal rights, a graduate student with crappy health insurance, and the son of union parents who watched as Republicans used the government to weaken unions and worker's rights.
I NEED him to win. I can't afford for him to lose, no matter how upset I may be about the primaries. So please stop attacking the bearers of bad news and start focusing your energy toward what is important: Victory in November!
Updated at 9:45pm EST by Psychodrew
Since so many people were insisting that 538.com knows everything, I paid a visit. And guess what I saw:
Our popular vote projection shows a literal tie, with each of Barack Obama and John McCain projected to earn 48.5 percent of the vote, and third-party candidates receiving a collective 3 percent.
Things get confusing, however, when looking at the electoral college. We project Obama to earn slightly more electoral votes on average. However, we also project John McCain to win the election slightly more often. What accounts for the discrepancy? Obama's wins tend to be larger, and McCain's tend to be smaller. If Obama wins this election by between 7 or 10 points, there are very few high-EV states that he won't be able to put into play; even something like Texas is probably winnable. If McCain were to win by that margin, on the other hand, he would still almost certainly lose New York, he would almost certainly lose Illinois, and he would almost certainly lose California. Those states represent 107 electoral votes that are essentially off-limits to McCain, even on his very best days.
Who's going to break the news to Poblano that he is a bitter, dead-ender McPuma troll?
But when the election is close -- and this is the case that we really care about -- McCain has appeared to develop a slight advantage in the electoral math. There are several states on our map that are colored light pink, meaning that they tip very slightly to the Republicans; these include Colorado, Ohio, Virginia, Florida, Montana and Nevada, in each of which Obama has better than a 25 percent chance of winning, but less than a 50 percent chance. There are a fairly large number of scenarios, then, where Obama comes tantalizingly close to a victory, but loses several different battleground states by mere points or fractions thereof. This dynamic is fairly fluid, however, and if Obama were able to get a toehold somewhere like Colorado or Virginia, it could quickly reverse itself.
Updated at 1:35pm EST by Psychodrew
Since I'm the bearer of bad news today. I just read this in the LA Times:
John McCain has begun rallying dispirited Republicans behind him, while Democratic rival Barack Obama has made scant progress building new support, leaving the presidential race statistically tied, according to a new Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll.
The survey highlights Obama's vulnerability on the question of his readiness to lead the nation. Less than half of the registered voters polled think the first-term Illinois senator has the "right" experience to be president, while 80% believe McCain, a four-term senator, does.
In a head-to-head matchup, Obama holds a narrow edge over McCain, 45% to 43%, which falls within the margin of sampling error of plus or minus 3 percentage points. (In June, Obama was ahead by 12 points in the Times/Bloomberg poll, but other surveys at the time showed him with a narrower lead.)
More striking, however, is the drop in Obama's favorable rating. It has slid from 59% to 48% since the June poll. At the same time, his negative rating has risen from 27% to 35%. The bulk of that shift stems from Republicans souring on Obama amid ferocious attacks on the Democrat by McCain and his allies.