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Parsing the (Tracking) Poll: The Youth Vote

Thanks to the polling gods -- and by that we mean Jon Cohen and Jennifer Agiesta -- the Washington Post is conducting a daily tracking poll for the final two weeks (!) of the presidential race between Barack Obama and John McCain.

The first track showed Obama holding a 53 percent to 44 percent edge over McCain; you can find the newest data EVERY DAY at 5 p.m. ET on our polling blog -- Behind the Numbers. (Bookmark it!)

Here at The Fix we always aim to bring you behind the numbers (that phrase sounds familiar for some reason) and so, in the final two weeks of the campaign, we are bringing out an oldy but goody: Parsing the Polls!

Regular Fix readers are familiar with Parsing the Polls -- a feature where, over the last few years, we have scanned surveys for a key or overlooked nugget of data.

Every morning for the final 14 days of this most historic of modern campaigns, we will be parsing our very own tracking poll -- highlighting an important (or unusual) demographic groups, response or trend.

So make sure to check out The Fix every morning and Behind the Numbers every night for the latest and greatest news and analysis from the Post's tracking poll.

Let's parse the polls!

It's no secret that one of the pillars of Obama's political base is young people who, at least in the Democratic primaries, tuned in and turned out in ways not seen in modern political history.

But, the level to which Obama is relying on a heavy turnout among these young voters for his winning equation come Nov. 4 is less understood.

The Post tracking poll offers clear evidence of the import of this often undependable voting bloc on Obama's chances.

Among all 18-29 year olds, Obama holds a wide 64 percent to 33 percent edge over McCain; among white voters aged 18-29 Obama holds a narrower 51 percent to 46 percent margin.

Compare those numbers to Sen. John Kerry's (Mass.) showing among those same demographic groups four years ago and it become readily apparent how central these voters are to Obama's chances at winning.

Kerry won all voters aged 18-29 by a nine points -- 54 percent to 45 percent -- in 2004; among white voters in that demographic Kerry lost by a whopping 58 percent to 40 percent margin to President George W. Bush.

Obama's numbers are also stratospherically stronger than Kerry's among first-time voters -- most but not all of whom are in that under-30 demographic. Obama take nearly three-quarters (73 percent) of first-time voters while McCain enjoys the support of just 26 percent. Four years ago, the race was much closer as Kerry won first time voters by just seven points -- 53 percent to 46 percent -- over Bush.

Every four years, reporters write stories about how this election is the one where young people have their voices heard and emerge as a critical voting bloc. The tracking poll suggests that this time around they might actually be right.

By Chris Cillizza  |  October 21, 2008; 6:00 AM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008 , Parsing the Polls  
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Next: Bachmann Goes Boom!

Comments

JOHN McCAIN will win the youth vote!

Even now, he is planning to drop SARAH PALIN from the ticket - her youth numbers are cratering faster than the stock market, because most kids don't agree that "Marriage is a sacrament between two unwilling teenagers" - and to replace her with ASHLEY TODD!

That Ashley is waaaay mavericky - a pit bull who chewed up her own face!

Posted by: HughBriss | October 25, 2008 3:29 AM | Report abuse

"socialism has been humming along in Europe"

Sharia law within 10 years

Posted by: leapin | October 23, 2008 1:28 PM | Report abuse


leapin said:

"they are voting themselves into a life under socialism which hasn't worked at anytime anywhere!"

Hey ignoramus, socialism has been humming along in Europe and elsewhere very nicely for the past 50+ years. But seeing that require taking your head out of your tush. But that's OK, you're not the only one. I've also known people who are actually talented and intelligent and who, due to some unexplained mulfunction in their logical circuitry decided to vote Republican.
You see, they're non-conformists and "empiricists", as it were, who decided to see what it's like to live under Republicans for themselves. Besides, they could afford that frivolity.

Posted by: VMR1 | October 22, 2008 12:54 PM | Report abuse

"This is NOT about diversity and it's not about Republicans against Democrats this time. It's smart vs. stupid, and it looks like the majority of the country has finally gotten smart."

In fact they are so smart that they are voting themselves into a life under socialism which hasn't worked at anytime anywhere!

Posted by: leapin | October 22, 2008 9:40 AM | Report abuse

.


.

You can tell who the paid Obama staffers are on here - they come on - they work for a shift with multiple postings and then they go home.


There is nothing in it for them except a paycheck.


They really do not believe what they say - it is a joke. I just wish the people giving money over the internet realized that their money was going to HARASS PEOPLE ON THE INTERNET WHO ARE EXERCISING THEIR FREEDOM OF SPEECH.


I have never seen a more UNAMERICAN campaign as Obama's has been this year.


Hostility toward Freedom of Speech is the FIRST CHARGE OF UNAMERICAN ACTIVITIES ON THE PART OF THE OBAMA CAMPAIGN.


Let's continue.


Hostility toward anyone who disagrees with them, False charges of RACISM, twisting Bill Clinton's words around, practically calling Geraldine Ferraro a racist for innocent and true remarks, intimidation of superdelegates with threats of "riots in the streets"

PREVENTING ELECTIONS IN MICHIGAN AND FLORIDA.


RIGGING THE DEMOCRATIC DELEGATE SELECTION PROCESS TO SELECT MORE MINORIITES.


RIGGING THE ORDER OF THE DEMOCRATIC PRIMARIES TO ENSURE THAT THE BLACKS IN SOUTH CAROLINA AND THE HISPANICS IN NEVADA HAVE UNDUE INFLUENCE IN THE MEDIA.

GENERAL HOSTILITY TOWARD THE US CONSTITUTION.


THE CHARGE IS: OBAMA AND DAVID AXELROD ARE RUNNING THE MOST UN-AMERICAN CAMPAIGN IN AMERICAN HISTORY.


CHARGE MADE.


THEY ARE GUILTY AS CHARGED.

.


.

Posted by: 37thandOSt | October 21, 2008 11:25 PM | Report abuse

.


.


The angry liberals really have an obnoxious condescending tone to them this year.


.


.

Posted by: 37thandOSt | October 21, 2008 9:55 PM | Report abuse

The angry liberals especially those Obama staff bloggers can take as much as snouty tone as they want, but they are still really wrong for this country.

.


.

Posted by: 37thandOSt | October 21, 2008 9:41 PM | Report abuse

Wow - reading here, this must be the place where the desperate Republicans are reassuring each other.
I am over 50, but I have worked with the Obama campaign for way over a year now. The thing that's different this time is - so are my kids, both voting age. We're in California, so we're not worried about our state. My son is going to Florida to help get out the vote there. He has NEVER wanted to vote before or even cared about politics. There are hundreds of thousands like him.
Don't fool yourselves. This is NOT about diversity and it's not about Republicans against Democrats this time. It's smart vs. stupid, and it looks like the majority of the country has finally gotten smart.

Posted by: sheridan1 | October 21, 2008 7:03 PM | Report abuse

JonSM99 -

Are you saying these groups vote on the basis of skin pigment?

Posted by: leapin | October 21, 2008 5:16 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if one of the reasons why young people support Obama so overwhelmingly is that they're more ethnically and racially diverse than older age groups. The country is getting browner, and I bet among the under 30 cohort, you'd find a smaller share of whites and a larger share of black, Hispanic, and Asian voters than in the overall averages.

Posted by: JonSM99 | October 21, 2008 5:06 PM | Report abuse

Vote for socialist policies that have never worked anywhere at any time. Never mind the morality of involuntarily confiscating the income of others.

Posted by: leapin | October 21, 2008 5:03 PM | Report abuse

"it is reported that some people [Obama]assocaites with are anti semitic. don't [sic]hand our nation over to this man who only wishes harm for this nation"

Fortunately, McCain has a good history of voting in favor of Jewish interests and the security of the United States.

http://www.votesmart.org/issue_keyvote_detail.php?cs_id=V3584

I would hate to suggest that McCain would do anything other than 'bomb, bomb Iran' but this little amendment would have closed the loophole that currently allows Halliburton to do business with Iran and other states that may threaten US and Israeli national secuirty. He apparently voted against it.

Incidently, that anti-American Obama and his running mate both voted for the amendment. I guess Obama didn't consult his friend Ayers before he voted.

Posted by: spanielmcnugget | October 21, 2008 4:58 PM | Report abuse

You know for too long the republican pro McCain/Palin crew have posted all sorts of nonsense on various sites in an attempt to frighten people away from Obama.

Even Palin has stated that she feels a better approach is to sit down with people at the kitchen table and discuss with them how we (repubs) are going to fix the economy.

All this BS about Joe the plumber.

So here is the opportunity right wingers go ahead now and instead of telling me how much I need to be afraid of Obama tell me how your party will fix things, and if you can convince me I'll vote repub otherwise its dems across the board

Posted by: akpat | October 21, 2008 3:29 PM | Report abuse

If Democrats are in control of Seneate and White House what happens

Nancy says Obama we support you pull the trigger ( she says it on economy to cut down taxes) , Obama thinks he is experienced enough on foreign Policy and pulls of Nuclear Trigger Bombing all countries and then calls Powell and Biden in confusion. Then they decide all the bombed countries had WMD :-)

Obama is going to lose as Hillary lost it in primaries.
Posted by: mrn744 | October 21, 2008 2:46 PM | Report abuse

-------------


Whet is the point to your post? A political campaign is not wishful thinking. What have you done to get Mccain elected? I would say nothing. Right now the Obama end game has begun. Obama does not need one more vote he already has overwhelming support. Now is the "get out to vote" part of the plan. My wife and a bunch in our area as well as all over the country are taking people to the polls and this will go on right through election day.

Millions of text messages reminders and emails are going out to remind people to vote early. Doors are being knocked on calls are going out and thousands and thousands of volunteers are on the ground implementing what has been in the planing for months.

I am sorry to say, John Mccain is still trying to figure out what his message is, It changes every three days. Mccain has no ground game and no end game and no idea what he is doing. Mccain and his campaign are just out classed by a more talented, dedicated and harder working campaign.
You are going to have to face the fact Mccain is going to lose.

Posted by: popasmoke | October 21, 2008 3:06 PM | Report abuse

Polls predicted Hillary to win primaries and she lost it miserable putting a brave face in the end.

Rememeber Obama had tough time winning white collar votes nothign has changed after that they are going to be deciding factors

Older voters are really scared of Obama's in experience

First time voters and young voters are group thats most vulenrable to change and i am sure thats going to be day of election.

Posted by: mrn744 | October 21, 2008 3:03 PM | Report abuse

People talk about the Bradley effect, and to be sure there have been some very unreliable polls during this cycle. But, I feel that polls have underestimated Obama support amongst younger voters because of flaws in their outdated methodology.

For 6 months I've said that I can't see this election being anything other than an Obama landslide. I'm more convinced now than ever. McCain is toast. Imagine that Sarah Palin will be spending a lot of time in New Hampshire over the next 4 years.

Posted by: pr8mrh | October 21, 2008 2:55 PM | Report abuse

Obama/Biden 08 will same result as biden for president in primaries 08

Posted by: mrn744 | October 21, 2008 2:55 PM | Report abuse

If Democrats are in control of Seneate and White House what happens

Nancy says Obama we support you pull the trigger ( she says it on economy to cut down taxes) , Obama thinks he is experienced enough on foreign Policy and pulls of Nuclear Trigger Bombing all countries and then calls Powell and Biden in confusion. Then they decide all the bombed countries had WMD :-)

Obama is going to lose as Hillary lost it in primaries.

Posted by: mrn744 | October 21, 2008 2:46 PM | Report abuse

king_of_zouk:

Numerous people here have told numerous times that you're an idiot. It's like, when three or more people tell you you're drunk maybe you shouldn't drive a car.

Posted by: VMR1 | October 21, 2008 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Ah, the joy of getting in the middle of a food fight. I hadn't followed it all the way down.

Don't worry about Zouk. Just another cut-and-paster from the right [Yes, Zouk. I've seen a number of unattributed comments from you that were cribbed from other sites.]

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | October 21, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

king_of_zouk:

Here you go again, if its not the youth that want their heads read for voting in Obama it must be something else that is wrong with him.

Why is it that the right wing in this country cannot come up with something real. Instead of tearing down everything why dont you tell me how McCain and co are going to fix things.

Do something useful and you may get my vote.

Posted by: akpat | October 21, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

FairlingtonBlade:

Regarding the comment "It is the young, stupid, naive, impractical youth"

The King_of_Zouk originally made this statement denigrating youth as being the only reason that Obama could win, in other words if you are young and stupid you will vote for Obama.

The youth are entitled to vote just as you and I are and in many cases there philosophy of life is more in tune with present day world issues than older folks.

Whats more smart or not, wealthy or poor these people will inherit the mess we have made.

Posted by: akpat | October 21, 2008 2:22 PM | Report abuse

don't take my word for it, consult your people:

Is Obama crisis-leadership qualified? Will he truly be ready Jan. 20 to assume the helm of our country?

Actually, those leadership questions have been answered already by three leading Democrats (before they could taste the perks from their alignment with the Democratic presidential nominee). Obama's own running mate, Sen. Joe Biden, replied only months ago about whether Obama is ready for the presidency: "Right now I don't believe he is. The presidency is not something that lends itself to on-the-job training." Then he later told George Stephanopoulos, "I stand by the statement." Biden was right.

Before Obama was her party's choice, Hillary Clinton repeatedly proved him to be an indecisive waffler who couldn't or wouldn't be pinned down on any issues. Hillary was right.

Even former President Bill Clinton dodged having to give an affirmative answer to an ABC correspondent when asked whether Obama is ready to be president by saying, "You can argue that no one is ready to be president." Another smooth answer, Bill. The fact is he totally understands that Obama is not ready.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | October 21, 2008 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Akpat -

"Arrogance does not become you. It is the young, stupid, naive, impractical youth that are inevitably the ones who get drafted and set to places far and wide to spill the guts and bleed American blood on foreign soil."

Last I heard, there was no intelligence test in a draft. No draft either, but that's beside the point. There were college deferments, but not the same thing. Also, I don't think there's any test for naivete in the military, drafted or volunteer. Likewise, impraticality is incompatible with military service. [Also known as casualties.]

"It is the young, stupid, naive, impractical youth that are going to end up paying for the financial mess that there elders and 'betters' have created."

So, you're saying that the intelligent ones won't have to pay for it? Generally speaking, the better educated are likelier to have high incomes. Naive and impratical folks also don't tend to do all that well financially, either. As service on the national debt is likely to be paid by high earners, it is the intelligent, practical, wise young folks who will do most of the paying.

"You arrogant conceited A$$"

Pot, kettle. Kettle, pot.

BB

Posted by: FairlingtonBlade | October 21, 2008 2:05 PM | Report abuse

akpat, you are clearly a loon. your Lib friends "Lied" to the same extent that bush did. the military is actually employed to go fight wars. what did you think they were for - directing traffic?

I guess irrational fear of the draft may be the only card you have left from a very thin deck. Understood.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | October 21, 2008 1:59 PM | Report abuse

Youth is to Naivete what Obama/Biden are to Gaffes

Posted by: leapin | October 21, 2008 1:57 PM | Report abuse

I do not know what polls you guys are looking at that has McCain up by 2 or 3 but here is the real polls by "Politico. com " All the "battle states" have Obama up, some by small margins but up nevertheless.
CO+6, Fl+2, MI+14, MO+3, NV+5, NH+10, NM+8, NC+2, OH+3, PA+11, VA+8, and WI+12. As you can see, even if McCain ends up winning in NC or MO etc. those are states that he should have locked up a year ago and now he has to spend time and money there to hold them. That means he will lose other states that Bush won. I don't see a way out for him but who knows, there are two weeks left, anything can still happen.

Posted by: Opa2 | October 21, 2008 1:54 PM | Report abuse

king_of_zouk:

Regarding your comments concerning the military. It IS the young, stupid, naive, impractical youth that are inevitably the ones who get drafted. The draft doesn't include old codgers. These young people are entitled to vote just as you are.

No there is not a draft at present but quite what would happen if McCain got in is open to suggestion. At present McCain feels he can win this war when all others think not.

In the end we have to have a good reason to put our people in harms way, many have been killed, many more injured and many more have family issues due to there prolonged absence from home.

If the republican party loved there fellow Americans they would not have sent our military out on a war based on lies and deceit.

As far as you last comment is concerned the republican party and the right wing do not have a monopoly on loving their country. It appears to be quite the opposite. The administration supported by McCain and others appear to have trampled the constitution, the Christian faith and their country into the ground.

Posted by: akpat | October 21, 2008 1:27 PM | Report abuse

zouk,

I suppose by "ahead" you mean McCain has statistically insignificant leads in one or two polls in those states.

The only candidate who has polled outside the margin in OH, FL, MO, or VA in the last week is Obama.

Posted by: cam8 | October 21, 2008 1:16 PM | Report abuse

Once Joe gets into business, he'll realize that all he has to do is raise his prices 4% and he'll spread Obama's pain around.

Our elected public servants are no longer listening to us. The bank bailout is not the only issue. The vast majority of American citizens have been against our continued presence in Iraq, against amnesty of illegal aliens, against more H-1B visas, against the continued shipment of our jobs offshore, and against more government growth and spending, but the government continues to support these things with legislation and to grow and spend. Almost half of us believe that 9/11 was an inside job, but no one is calling for an independent investigation. We want to wean ourselves from our dependence on foreign oil, but Congress and the Senate play with renewable tax credits like they are a volleyball. Who they are listening to is not clear, but it can only be surmised from looking at their lists of campaign contributions.

http://ewebsmith.com/Finance/notlistening.html

Posted by: websmith1 | October 21, 2008 1:13 PM | Report abuse

so big Mac is now officially ahead in OH, FL and MO. Is that the state by state you were talking about? Only VA left for a win by the good guys.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | October 21, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

""It is the young, stupid, naive, impractical youth that are inevitably the ones who get drafted ""

Hey groundless moonbat, the draft has not been in effect for decades and there is no plan to imlplement it. In case you forgto, the US Military is all volunteer and has been making its numbers quite nicely. contrary to Lib belief, they are smarter than the average Joe and support McCain by 68%. I guess a little intelligence is highly correlated to Repub votes. Meanwhile, hate for America spells Obama support.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | October 21, 2008 1:05 PM | Report abuse

another day, another drop in the polls for THE ONE. Truth leaks out.

Posted by: king_of_zouk

------------

Poor zouk.
His beloved Zogby now has Barack up by 8.

Electoral college is all. Nationwide polling is not.

Posted by: wpost4112 | October 21, 2008 1:00 PM | Report abuse

Chris: As you know, the key to every (reasonably close) election is getting your supporters to actually vote. Obama's massive GOTV effort is not only impressive in its design and function, but more importantly has the MONEY behind it to make it work efficiently.

Not only are youth and first-time voters notoriously difficult to turn out, so are minority voters. But look at the primaries: Obama has a tested and effective turnout strategy that has already proven itself to work. On the flip side, not only are McCain's voters much less enthusiastic and therefore more difficult to turn out, McCain has little or no money to put into a GOTV effort.

GOTV may not be very sexy compared to a campaign's internal politicking, policy-making, and backroom strategizing, but it is what ulimately wins elections.

Posted by: Stonecreek | October 21, 2008 12:51 PM | Report abuse

king_of_zouk: wrote
))
so without the young, stupid, naive, impractical youth vote, the messiah can't win. figures.
))

Arrogance does not become you. It is the young, stupid, naive, impractical youth that are inevitably the ones who get drafted and set to places far and wide to spill the guts and bleed American blood on foreign soil.

It is the young, stupid, naive, impractical youth that are going to end up paying for the financial mess that there elders and 'betters' have created.

You arrogant conceited A$$

Posted by: akpat | October 21, 2008 12:43 PM | Report abuse

This article is about polls.
I find polls an interesting read, but thats just about all.
Every day now you find nationwide polls with a MOE of 3%, but 8 or mor points apart. How can that be?
Gallup are offering three numbers. They are quite different where in fact they should not be so different after all.

Don't feed the trolls, don't trust the polls.

Posted by: awaler | October 21, 2008 12:42 PM | Report abuse

There are some huge assumptions about voting behavior buried in these polls. The likely voter model discounts first-time voters. Because we've seen unprecedented voter registration over the last 12 months, I don't think that's a very good assumption. And, as Chris points out this segment of the voting population is strongly pro-Obama.

The Registered Voter weighting is probably closer to the truth in this instance. The Likely Voter model was put in to account for differences between past polls and elections to reconcile differences. However, every election is different, and applying historical trends to this particular election is probably going to result in significant differences between polls and the election.

So... my prediction is that with the exception of the deep South, Obama is going to win the popular vote by a large margin, perhaps even higher than 10 points. In the electoral college, perhaps as high as 350 electoral votes.

The theocon/neocon alliance is a spent force. McCain has been out-raised, out-thought, out-maneuvered, and out-campaigned from day 1. His bizarre reach for Palin was an attempt to ignite the Republican base, which it did. The problem is that the ignorant, cognitively dissonant Joe Plumbers of this world are not enough anymore.

Posted by: dpc2003 | October 21, 2008 12:41 PM | Report abuse

Is McCain REALLY trying to win Pennsylvania? What in the world makes him think that state is more winnable than Colorado? Does Obama ever draw less than a +10 there?

Posted by: DDAWD | October 21, 2008 12:37 PM | Report abuse

poor messiah - lead now down to a single point in Battleground poll. He is also behind again in FL and OH. It seems the Oba-tanic has hit a burg. Maybe it's al gore's global cooling iceberg. He will be sending out an SOS soon but the sinking is inevitable. Perhaps ACORN can steal enough votes to make it close.

He just can't seem to close the deal. all the hype, all the lies, all the cover up, all the momentum, and still NO SALE.

Maybe it was the crack about "We're going to take your money and spread it around to our people" that annoyed actual bona-fide workers.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | October 21, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Health Care: Seven months. That's all it took before Hawaii concluded that the only state universal child medical coverage program in the country is unsustainable. Give officials credit for heading off a disaster. On March 1, the Hawaii Medical Service Association began enrolling children in the state Keiki (child) Care program.

here's a glimpse at the future of Obama-care.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | October 21, 2008 12:28 PM | Report abuse

"The Fix should ask the pollsters whether they have changed the weighting of the youth vote in their poll sample, relative to 2004"

I don't have a source off the top of my head, but I don't think most of them are. Most of them have changed the weights of Democrats vs Republicans (about 15 percent more Dems today, about even in 2004), but I don't think they've altered the voter model for demographic factors.

Posted by: DDAWD | October 21, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

MIAMI -- The wife of a Florida congressman embroiled in an adultery scandal filed for divorce Monday. U.S. Rep. Tim Mahoney admitted last week to having at least two affairs, including with an aide he paid off to keep her quiet about their relationship. His wife, Terry Mahoney, did not comment on seeking the divorce, and her attorney, Karen Steger, said "the petition speaks for itself."


this is the result of the PeLousy congress calling for the end of the culture of corruption. Wait until you see the result of the call for tax increases, more spending, huge regulations, fireign surrender and more. change is coming - hold onto your pennies.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | October 21, 2008 12:27 PM | Report abuse

so without the young, stupid, naive, impractical youth vote, the messiah can't win. figures.

another day, another drop in the polls for THE ONE. Truth leaks out.

Posted by: king_of_zouk | October 21, 2008 12:13 PM | Report abuse

some right wing nut case wrote
"He understands that if you tax people too much they will stop working hard. Or they might switch to cash economy. Either way tax revenues go down.
Joe the Plumber gets it, Obama does not."

Sometimes I wonder whether people even think about what they are saying. I don't think that are many people who earn over $250,000/year who have the ability to switch to a cash economy!!! Give me a ******* break. Because you have to pay an additional 3% tax people are going to stop working hard! At 36% I'll work my butt off but at 39% oh no that is to high I will just stop working.

Posted by: rds7481 | October 21, 2008 12:11 PM | Report abuse

When Obama speaks about delivering change he means it. Getting the young people of America to the polling booth in a Presidential election is a BIG change and will make the difference in this election.

The youth of America know that if they don't speak up at this time and vote, their future and the future of their children are in jeopardy as well as the retirement incomes of their parents and grandparents. I can imagine that at least one or two of those new youth voters that Obama has inspired will one day run for president. I only hope that after the election is over, the youth of America will remain involved in polictics.

The younger generations are energized by Obama because he represents real change - someone who hasn't been in the Senate long enough to be tainted and caught up in the old way of doing business. They can relate to Obama because of his age and intellect. They can relate to Obama because he put himself through college on scholarships and student loans. They can relate to Obama because he wasn't born with a silver spoon in his mouth and was just an ordinary person. There is nothing about McCain that they can relate to - all they see is a tired old warrior.

Posted by: Nevadaandy | October 21, 2008 12:06 PM | Report abuse

You know for too long the republican pro McCain/Palin crew have posted all sorts of nonsense on various sites in an attempt to frighten people away from Obama.

Even Palin has stated that she feels a better approach is to sit down with people at the kitchen table and discuss with them how we (repubs) are going to fix the economy.

All this BS about Joe the plumber.

So here is the opportunity right wingers go ahead now and instead of telling me how much I need to be afraid of Obama tell me how your party will fix things, and if you can convince me I'll vote repub otherwise its dems across the board

Posted by: akpat | October 21, 2008 12:05 PM | Report abuse

"Among all 18-29 year olds, Obama holds a wide 64 percent to 33 percent edge over McCain"...

Not surprising, given that the Republicans and Bush have waged an unwise war, screwed up the economy by believing their own bs about the invisible hand (while doling out favors - and big military and energy contracts - to their friends, as usual), put students in debt, put young professionals out of the health insurance safety net, and hypocritically used science to find oil but not to clean up the mess it leaves on our shared planet.

Republican policies are so dumb and bad for the country it is a wonder that smart people have looked the other way this long...

Young people: it is your planet too, don't let the old, greedy buggers ruin it for you.

Peace, prosperity, health care, education, energy independence, clean environment. We can have it all, but we have to be smart, work hard, and get rid of the Republican jerks.

Obama/Biden '08

Posted by: jrob822 | October 21, 2008 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Joe the Plumber and Sarah the Pretender ARE mediocrity personified.

Enough said about those two.

Posted by: wpost4112 | October 21, 2008 11:24 AM | Report abuse

Why is it that polls do not always reflect the actual vote? Remember Dewey did not get elected. Polls are not considered accurate statistical research. In some instances too few people are polled. In other instances the method of polling introduces biases into the answers.

As a a recipient of pollsters' obvious efforts, I can confirm that the questions which were asked of me were slanted. The organizations names spoken so rapidly as to be unidentifiable.

I can also tell you that depending upon the voice tone on the other end of the phone line I will either hang up, lie (yes, lie), or answer correctly. If I believe that the pollster is non-threatening I am more likely to tell the truth.

Given the recent news about ACORN how many citizens might be fearful to respond to an unknown voice who has your name, address, and other information about you? Can you imagine registering to vote and giving ACORN your pertinent information? They did hire felons...still do.

It is not too big a leap to find voters reluctant to answer questions of a highly personal nature. The last time I looked it was still a free election with private votes...or, is that going to the October surprise - the CHANGE is really Ole' Chicago Politics.

Posted by: CitizenProf | October 21, 2008 11:19 AM | Report abuse

"Joe the Plumber said on FOX last night, 'Obama’s tax policies are breading mediocrity'"

Mmmmmm. Sounds good. I'll have my mediocrity on a bed of fettucine.

Seriously - Joe the Plumber can't even handle the current policies. He should pay his taxes before he moans about them.

Posted by: bondjedi | October 21, 2008 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Joe the Plumber said on FOX last night, “Obama’s tax policies are breading mediocrity”.
He understands that if you tax people too much they will stop working hard. Or they might switch to cash economy. Either way tax revenues go down.
Joe the Plumber gets it, Obama does not.

In the Soviet Union people used to say, “YOU PRETEND THAT YOU PAY, I PRETEND I WORK”, Joe understand, Obama doesn’t

Posted by: DemocracyRules | October 21, 2008 11:07 AM | Report abuse

BACK TO THE FUTURE: 2000, 2004 REDUX?

Fear and smear seems to work every time... especially when certain pollsters' data can be strategically massaged.

And how about these early voting reports of electronic voting machines registering votes for the WRONG candidate?

Could it be that the election is being stolen right before your eyes and mainstream media refuses to acknowledge the possibility... or investigate certain pollsters who may be producing the best numbers money can buy?

Witness the official war on ACORN; even in a worst-case scenario, it's registration fraud, and not voter fraud... but does "Joe Sixpack" or Fox News make a distinction? Of course not. Yet the group is painted by McCain as a threat to democracy itself. And it's been conveniently leaked that the group is under federal investigation.

That raises this disturbing question:

WHAT IF McCAIN-PALIN'S STRATEGY IS AIMED NOT AT VOTERS, BUT AT THE APPARACHIK?

http://www.nowpublic.com/world/mccain-palins-fellow-traveler-insinuations-what-if-u-s-security-forces-agree

OR members.nowpublic.com/scrivener

Posted by: scrivener50 | October 21, 2008 11:02 AM | Report abuse

" ... Joe the Plumer ... "

Yeah, a preening bird really does seem to be a more apt description of that guy. LOL

Posted by: RealCalGal | October 21, 2008 10:52 AM | Report abuse

jandcgall1 asks
"Is it too much to ask for an analysis by county in the battleground states?"

Yes, it is too much to ask. I'd like to see that data too, but the reality is that nobody has the money available to poll 300-400 people in every county in every battleground state. Here in MN, they aren't even polling all the congressional districts. Pollsters decided that MN-1 and MN-3 were the tight races, so those are the ones they poll. Its looking like MN-6 is tightening & with Bachmann's rant on Friday could end up being a surprise pickup for the Dems. Polling data to support or refute this hypothesis is not to be found.

Posted by: bsimon1 | October 21, 2008 10:46 AM | Report abuse

Fivethirtyeight.com, in its edifying Tracking Poll Primer, today says that the WP/ABC poll is "Strong relative to that of other major news organizations...although just average compared to the field [of national polls] at large" and that it has a "Significant Democratic lean of 3 or so points".

Posted by: llhanlon | October 21, 2008 10:39 AM | Report abuse


Hey Jersey Boy--

I can't speak for your state.

But the Palins are still secessionists and the GOP campaign is still incredibly negative.

And that was still an innocent bear that got offed and strewn with Obama banners.

Just sayin'.


Posted by: tony_in_Durham_NC | October 21, 2008 10:34 AM | Report abuse

Both my college-age sons were charged up to be able to vote in this election. They chose to vote by absentee ballot and mailed them in last week. They and their friends are also active in canvassing neighborhoods near their campuses and encouraging voter registration. One of them attends college in North Carolina and he reports that the outpouring of student enthusiasm is making a real difference in that new battleground state.

By the way, we live and vote in New Jersey. Our small town (very pro-American, Ms. Palin) is solidly behind Obama but several neighbors have McCain signs on their lawns. No one has damaged any signs and no one has keyed any cars.

Vandalism, intimidation, and verbal abuse at rallies is not part of democracy. A lesson that the troglodytes among the McCain supporters would do well to start learning.

Posted by: dee5 | October 21, 2008 10:32 AM | Report abuse

Top 2008 Election Blogs in the real world:

Martin H. Kaplan, associate dean of the USC Annenberg School for Communication, offers his picks:

1. thinkprogress.org

2. www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald

3. digbysblog.blogspot.com

4. dailykos.com

5. www.huffingtonpost.com

6. www.talkingpointsmemo.com

7. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/linkset/2005/04/24/LI2005042401085.html

8. atrios.blogspot.com

9. firedoglake.com

10. www.crooksandliars.com

11. www.washingtonmonthly.com

12. www.americablog.com

13. www.politico.com

Posted by: wpost4112 | October 21, 2008 10:31 AM | Report abuse

.

.


Voted One Of The Top 5 Political Blogs For The Election Of 2008


Bookmark It Now




http://www.myspace.com/37thandostreet


.

.


Voted One Of The Top 5 Political Blogs For The Election Of 2008


Bookmark It Now




http://www.myspace.com/37thandostreet


.

.

Posted by: 37thandOSt | October 21, 2008 10:23 AM | Report abuse

Young voters saw in 2000 that a few votes can make a difference. Yes, they were in their early teens at the time, but that sort of national drama has a big impact at that age. And over the last 8 years, they have come to realize that the person in charge can make a huge difference for better or worse.

As a back-to-school career changer at 40, I see it all over the campus I attend and the public schools I am observing. They genuinely believe their votes and activities make a difference. That's significantly different from my first college experience in the late 80's.

Posted by: starthom | October 21, 2008 10:18 AM | Report abuse

Re: polls by counties in battleground states

The public is inundated with meaningless data from national and state polls. What is important--and what we are not getting--is data on county polls in the battleground states. Poll data by county gives the best insight into where the candidates stand; after all, this is not a popularity contest, but an electoral college.

Is it too much to ask for an analysis by county in the battleground states?

Posted by: jandcgall1 | October 21, 2008 10:15 AM | Report abuse

tony_in_Durham_NC


Let's see you speak out about what Congressman Lewis said first


.


In New Jersey, Obama supporters are "keying" cars with McCain stickers.

.

Posted by: 37thandOSt | October 21, 2008 10:13 AM | Report abuse

The Fix should ask the pollsters whether they have changed the weighting of the youth vote in their poll sample, relative to 2004. The reason this question is important is that it could give us additional insight into the poll data. For instance, if Obama's lead among young people is as strong as reported, but the young folks are weighted in the sample according to their participation in 2004, the poll is likely underreporting Obama's actual numbers.

On the other hand, if the poll is already weighting the youth vote heavier, in anticipation of them actually showing up in higher numbers, the poll could be overstating Obama's numbers - if the youth don't turn up as expected.

In any case, given the apparent excitement and enthusiasm among the electorate, my guess is that all the pollsters are off and we're going to be surprised by the outcome.

Posted by: bsimon1 | October 21, 2008 10:13 AM | Report abuse

"birds of a feather flock together" why else do you think obama hangs out with likes of wright who he sat under fo over 20 years and un-repentant terrorist bill ayers. obama thinks and feels the same way as these other hate filled people. obama had two guys working for him that had ties to the terrorist group hamas. also it is reported that some people he assocaites with are anti semitic. don't hand our nation over to this man who only wishes harm for this nation

Posted by: diaco7529 | October 21, 2008 6:31 AM | Report abuse
------------------
reply
We could also talk about all the communists that spend time at Mccains ranch and he visits when he is over seas.

Posted by: popasmoke | October 21, 2008 10:11 AM | Report abuse


Hey Chris, parse this:

REPUBLICAN ANTI-OBAMA VIOLENCE IN NORTH CAROLINA

Journalist attacked at Palin ralley, Elon, NC

http://blog.news-record.com/staff/capblog/archives/2008/10/report_from_pal.shtml

Bear killed and dumped with Obama banners at Western Carolina University

http://www.citizen-times.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=200881020067

Tires slashed on 30 parked vehicles at Obama rally in Fayetteville, NC

http://www.wral.com/news/state/story/3771147/


I challenge John McCain and Sarah Palin, or even Senator Elizabeth Dole or NC gubernatorial candidate Pat McCrory to speak out against these acts.

PS: It doesn't help that the Palins are secessionists. We tried that down here in the 1860's. Doesn't work.


Posted by: tony_in_Durham_NC | October 21, 2008 9:55 AM | Report abuse

You never did a redux for the "Can McCain Win?" Wag the Blog.

I guess this means the question was rhetorical?

Posted by: JohninMpls | October 21, 2008 9:48 AM | Report abuse

Obviously, the buzz right now is the young voters. But is there any way to determine if voter turnout in general expects to be higher? Are other demographics (boomers? nonagenarians?) planning on turning out in greater numbers? Has registration gone up across the board? I wonder if all the news attention on the whippper-snapper set has seen any backlash yet.

http://www.squatcrouch.com/

Posted by: Squatty_HJ | October 21, 2008 9:07 AM | Report abuse

"don't hand our nation over to this man who only wishes harm for this nation"

I'm astonished that there are people on either side of the ticket who still think that one candidate or the other wishes to "harm the nation".

Posted by: Kili | October 21, 2008 9:06 AM | Report abuse

To find the real youth vote, consult the Scholastic poll of 1st-12th graders, nearly a quarter of a million kids, which has accurately predicted election outcomes for all but 2 years (1948 and 1960).
Obama voters lead McCain 57 to 39 percent.
Interestingly, key state races are fairly close except Florida (Obama 55 to 41 percent) and Michigan (Obama 57 to 40) and Colorado (McCain 61 to 36).
http://www2.scholastic.com/browse/article.jsp?id=3750501

Posted by: oldmagnolia | October 21, 2008 9:04 AM | Report abuse

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Barack Obama will suspend his presidential campaign for part of two days this week to return to his native Hawaii to be at the side of his gravely ill grandmother, a campaign aide said Monday.

Such a caring and compassionate fellow isn't he? he knows his grandmother is gravely ill on Monday but the media say he will Dash to his gravely ill grandmothers side on Friday for part of 2 days.
Preview of how he will take care of our Country


Old Joe Biden took more time than that with his mother in-law.

"and also the media has been asked to stay away and respect his family's privacy "
just why do they get their privacy respected when Palin , McCain, and Joe the Plumer have had their privacy invaded, their families, their friends.

It's all about Obama does not want that grandmother talking ,she knows too much!!!!!!
Seems like he is hoping she will croak befor he get's there. He hasn't even sent his wife or children to see her neither is taking them when he DASHES to her side on Friday.
When our country is gravely ill Obama will respond in the same way. Him and his ugly wife will be dining on lobster and caviar while the Country is gravely ill.

Posted by: xantiphi | October 21, 2008 9:01 AM | Report abuse

The turnout machine for Obama has always been key in any prospective Dem victory. All of the polls have Obama well ahead among registered voters but McCain inching closer among likely voters. Getting those new voters and youngsters to come out will no doubt determine the race in lots of battlegrounds.

http://www.political-buzz.com/

Posted by: parkerfl1 | October 21, 2008 8:16 AM | Report abuse

Is't Mickey Mouse in the over-75 demographic?

Posted by: AsperGirl | October 21, 2008 8:11 AM | Report abuse

MCCain can only win pennsylvania if he's ahead nationally -it would be part of a mCcain landslide- his campaign makes no sense.

Posted by: rupertornelius | October 21, 2008 8:09 AM | Report abuse

Well, geez, if we have to play this stupidly negative game...

Let's compare Obama's 'involvement' with Ayers --he was 8 years old, remember, at the time of Ayers' terrorist activity (since then of course, Ayers has become a model citizen) with...

the Palins ACTIVE (and they're adults!) involvement in the Alaska Independent Party-- good ol' boy Todd Palin was a full-fledged member. And Palin herself continues to support a radical political organization that seeks nothing less than the overthrow of the US government.

and then there's McCain's and his wife's longstanding relationship with Keating (convicted criminal) and Liddy (convicted criminal and traitor to the US). Both McCain and his wife were implicated in the Keating 5 scandal.

Not to mention Palin's own relationship with extremist religion.

Hard NOT to be afraid of the McCain/Palin ticket, to be honest.

Posted by: itchy2008 | October 21, 2008 8:09 AM | Report abuse

Let's all just ignore "diaco 7529" He appears to be unaware of the facts.

The poll numbers here are good as are two other sets this morning. I think that this is not a 9 point race, but it could be a 7 point race. That would be 3 times Bush's 2004 margin and - well infinitely beyond Bush's 2000 margin because Bush lost the popular vote.
If McCain really has abandoned Colorado his only possible strategy is to win Pennsylvania while keepingt Ohio, Florida, Virginia and Morth Carolina. That is a very difficult game to play.

Posted by: djah | October 21, 2008 7:34 AM | Report abuse

It may be the year when youth turn out in larger numbers than normal. It may also be a year where voter turnout generally rises as people realise that their vote is needed to ensure we don't have another 8 years like the past and allow a narrow-minded group of politicians to hijack the country....

Posted by: RickJ | October 21, 2008 7:33 AM | Report abuse

My law office is across from a county early voting location. I will look to see "who is voting" to get an idea if the younger voters are really turning out.

JD - pls eml me at

mark_in_austin@operamail.com

Posted by: mark_in_austin | October 21, 2008 7:23 AM | Report abuse

"birds of a feather flock together" why else do you think obama hangs out with likes of wright who he sat under fo over 20 years and un-repentant terrorist bill ayers. obama thinks and feels the same way as these other hate filled people. obama had two guys working for him that had ties to the terrorist group hamas. also it is reported that some people he assocaites with are anti semitic. don't hand our nation over to this man who only wishes harm for this nation

Posted by: diaco7529 | October 21, 2008 6:31 AM | Report abuse

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