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The Race Goes to 11 -- Powell Helps with Indies

By Jon Cohen and Jennifer Agiesta
Barack Obama is up 11 points on John McCain among likely voters in the new Washington Post-ABC News tracking poll, 54 to 43 percent. Though little changed from yesterday, Obama's national lead is now his biggest of the campaign in Post-ABC polling.

Former secretary of state Colin Powell's endorsement provides a new boost for Obama, who has made significant progress with voters as a leader in international affairs. But Obama also continues to be lifted by more fundamental advantages, including a 2 to 1 advantage on "helping the middle-class."

First on Powell -- two in 10 independent voters said they are more inclined to vote for Obama because of Powell's backing; 4 percent said they were nudged the other way.

In polling after the Powell nod, Obama trails McCain by 19-points on the question of who would be a better commander in chief. But McCain's advantage as prospective commander in chief is sharply diminished from early September, when he held a whopping 43-point lead on the question coming out of the nominating conventions.

Continue reading at Behind the Numbers»

By Web Politics Editor  |  October 22, 2008; 5:06 PM ET
Categories:  The Pollster  
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Next: McCain Defends Palin Against 'Elitist' Critics


Democrats for John McCain and Sarah Palin in 2008

Posted by: hclark1 | October 23, 2008 1:56 PM | Report abuse

HOW ABOUT A BLOG ON-IS OBAMA THE 2ND COMING OF CARTER? (when you include Ebayers, Obama's 2% of small businesses make over 250k comment is valid - when you consider small businesses that EMPLOY PEOPLE it is far OFF! So, get your resume in order!)

Ralph Reilan- IBD Today-

Obama gets to his reassuring 98% figure by lumping firms with no employees, the majority of small businesses, with small businesses that have 50 or 100 employees. Census data show that 79% of all American companies, counting both large and small firms, have no employees.

Similarly, the SBA's Office of Advocacy reports that 52% of small businesses in the U.S. economy are home-based — that is, not exactly the heavy-hitters when it comes to job creation.

As the New York Times reported regarding the makeup of the nation's 27 million small businesses: "According to figures compiled by the Small Business Administration, there are fewer than six million small businesses that actually have employees. The rest are so-called non-employer firms that report income from hobbies or freelance work done by their registered owners, earning as little as $1,000 a year."

By treating a lemonade stand the same as a home builder with 100 employees, Obama can get away with saying that 98% of small businesses in America won't be hit by his proposed increases in income taxes.

He's telling the 59 million employees in the small-business sector there's almost no chance, specifically a 2% chance, that their jobs or incomes will be negatively affected by his proposed tax hikes and policies to "spread the wealth around." In fact, Obama's proposed tax hike on incomes over $250,000 is precisely aimed at the small businesses that are generating the highest revenues and hiring the most workers.

"Two-thirds of small business profits are earned in households making more than $250,000 per year," reports Americans for Tax Reform. "In 2006, $473 billion of the $706 billion of small business profits was earned in households Obama has said he would raise taxes on."

Obama's proposed increases in income taxes and Social Security taxes would shift the bulk of the profits in the small-business sector to the federal coffers, reports Americans for Tax Reform:

"The tax rate on the lion's share of small business income could reach 54.9% under a President Obama. The individual top rate will climb from 35% to 39.6% and the Social Security/Medicare tax rate could climb from 2.9% to 15.3%. Put those together and you get 54.9%."

By increasing costs, Obama's higher business taxes would have the direct effect of increasing layoffs and raising prices. His proposed 54.9% tax rate would be the highest since the Carter administration, when the nation's unemployment and inflation rates peaked, respectively, at 7.6% and 13.5%.

Posted by: thecannula | October 23, 2008 10:22 AM | Report abuse

McCain is a maverick you libs dont know nothing about his background. He was a war hero and is all about the working man. Obama aint going to do nothing but raise our taxes and take our guns not only that but I wouldnt be supprised if that muslim terrorist reverend right is his right hand man when he gets elected. How would you feel about that? You libs probably want irani terrorists to keep attacking us and thats whats going to happen if you let that muslim monster obama get in office

Posted by: JohnnyREP | October 23, 2008 9:37 AM | Report abuse

Let me get it straight: Sen. Obama is against Bush Administration and President Bush (check), against War in Iraq (check), against 8 years of Bush policies (check). Gen. Colin Powell served as a Secretary of State in the Bush Administration (2001-2004), was a chief spokesman for the Iraq War, and was a foreign policy spokesman for the President Bush during 2001-2004. Gen. Colin Powell endorsed Sen. Obama for the President of the USA and Sen. Obama accepted it not only without hesitation but with happiness. Does it mean that Sen. Obama is no longer against Bush Administration and President Bush (check), against War in Iraq (check), and against 8 years of Bush policies (check)? Why would you accept an endorsement from a Bushie anyway?

Posted by: Wiel | October 22, 2008 10:58 PM | Report abuse

McCain's experience has not led him to sound judgment. It could have, but being a "Maverick" was more important.

Posted by: rooster54 | October 22, 2008 10:13 PM | Report abuse

If people would read this article they may have an easier time of getting over McCain.
Powell is an honorable man. I read his biography by Karen DeYoung and I hope the next President invites him back into the cabinet.

Posted by: BakedAlaska1 | October 22, 2008 7:21 PM | Report abuse

McCain handed over his campaign to the JV squad from Rove High School. Bad decision making. He picked Palin. Unvetted, unqualified. A reckless and dangerous decision. Bad decision making. He flip-flopped on everything he ever claimed to stand for is is running a dirty/negative campaign. Bad Choice.

Meanwhile Obama is getting it together to be ready to lead the USA out of the mess that the last 8 years of Republican rule has created.

Get this ballots in and let's get 'er done!

Posted by: thebobbob | October 22, 2008 6:48 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, but the latest AP poll has Obama and McCain tied.e

That doesn't include Powell's endorement, Palin's wardrobe, today's stock drop.

Posted by: thenotoriousflavio | October 22, 2008 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Powell reinforced how important it is to have leadership and good judgment and how Palin and McCain are discordant with that theme.

Posted by: Gator-ron | October 22, 2008 5:25 PM | Report abuse

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