29 September 2012

Battleground Report 09/28/2012 - T-minus 39 days

Friday, September 28, 2012, was exactly 39 days before the General Election on November 6, 2012.

Here the corresponding BATTLEGROUND REPORT from 40 days before the GE 2008: BATTLEGROUND REPORT from 09/26/2008.

The BATTLEGROUND REPORTS run also with the national numbers. Here is the NATIONAL POLLING OUTLOOK thread, with links to every day going back to September 13, 2012. Want to see the numbers for a specific day? Go to that link.

All of the 2012 polling for all states, including national figures, including specialty polls, including the newly published RED STATE REPORT and of course, including the BATTLEGROUND STATE REPORT, is HERE for 09/28 at GoogleDocs.

The LEGEND for the following EXCEL table is HERE. In fact, you need to read it in order to develop an "eye" for the table:
StateEV% of ECPolls28.09.1227.09.12Shift20082004SWING (H-I)End polling 2008Compare E – KCompare E – GE008
GA162,97%0 / 213,5013,500,005,2016,6011,403,859,658,30
NE50,93%0 / 1011,0011,000,0014,9333,2218,2919,00-8,00-3,93
MO101,86%0 / 49,129,120,000,137,207,070,468,668,99
IN112,04%1 / 38,008,000,00-1,0320,6821,711,186,829,03
AZ112,04%1 / 37,677,670,008,4810,471,994,433,24-0,81
TN30,56%0 / 17,007,000,0015,0614,270,7914,00-7,00-8,06
MT30,56%0 / 27,007,000,002,3820,5018,121,645,364,62
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--------------------
NE-0210,19%0 / 10,000,000,001,2121,6920,484,00-4,00-1,21
NC152,79%1 / 60,830,830,000,3312,4312,760,620,210,50
FL295,39%0 / 162,352,350,002,815,017,821,790,56-0,46
CO91,67%0 / 93,083,080,008,954,6713,626,62-3,54-5,87
IA61,12%1 / 64,004,000,009,530,6710,2012,75-8,75-5,53
VA132,42%2 / 134,314,090,226,308,2014,504,93-0,62-1,99
NV61,12%1 / 74,434,430,0012,492,5915,086,83-2,40-8,06
NH40,74%1 / 54,604,000,609,611,378,2410,43-5,83-5,01
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--------------------
USA538100,00%4 / 104,534,74-0,217,262,469,727,54-3,01-2,73
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--------------------
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OH183,35%1 / 95,224,550,674,582,116,692,302,920,64
WI101,86%0 / 86,196,190,0013,900,3813,5211,34-5,15-7,71
MN101,86%0 / 38,008,000,0010,243,486,7611,34-3,34-2,24
MI162,97%2 / 7 8,748,610,1316,443,4213,0214,44-5,70-7,70
PA203,72%2 / 108,798,660,1310,312,507,8111,34-2,55-1,52
OR71,30%0 / 19,009,000,0016,354,1612,1915,57-6,57-7,35
NM50,93%2 / 39,339,330,0015,130,7915,929,260,07-5,80


In the battlegrounds and potential battlegrounds, polls came in for VA, NH, OH, MI, PA, and NM.

As was the case on 09/27, there is only one statistical tossup state: NORTH CAROLINA, for which there was no new polling on 09/28. NC is holding steady at +0.83 for the President. On this corresponding day in 2008, McCain was ahead in the Tarheel State by +2.70. That is a +3.53 advantage for the President over this time frame in 2008.

The biggest statistical news of the day is that officially, OHIO has just moved ever so slightly out of the battleground zone. Ohio had a statistical jump from +4.55 on 09/27 to +5.22 on 09/28, a +0.67 jump from one day to the next. This happened because the polls from 09/13 fell out of the statistic as they are now more than two weeks old, and two of those polls showed only +1 for Obama. The new PPP shows him at +6, above his national margin average. Two more important thing to note:

-President Obama has been ahead in every single OHIO poll within the last 3 weeks (14 polls, 9 of which are in the current statistic).

-OHIO never ever once got this close to or moved over the battleground line in from September-November 2008, not even once. So, this statistical event today is more important than appears. Now, it is very likely that Ohio can slip back into battleground territory, since polling averages tend to work like sinus waves: they expand, then they colllapse some, then they expand again, and so on. In fact, on this corresponding day in 2008, McCain was leading in Ohio by an average of +1.40.

Interesting to note is that NEW HAMPSHIRE's margin gain for the President of +0.60 is very similar to his gain in OHIO.

VIRGINIA also jumped slightly, by +0.22 over 09/27, for the same reasons as Ohio. In spite of one new poll showing that race in VA at only +2, the PPP showing +6 moved the margin, plus one RAS poll older than two weeks, showing +1, fell out of the statistic. So, in reality, over a 2-week period, VIRGINIA has been very steady around the composite +4 range, ala OHIO.

Super interesting to note that both MICHIGAN and PENNSYLVANIA both got two new polls, some polls older than two weeks were cycled out, and both states' margins advanced by +0.13 over the day before. At  +8.74 and +8.79 respectively, it is looking very much as if ever +8 state (both red and blue) will probably leave the battleground table once we have seen polling following the first debate. If polling in these states continues to show these states moving father and father out of the battleground zone, then there is really no reason to keep them there. On this corresponding day in 2008, Obama was leading in MICHIGAN by +5.60 and in PENNSYLVANIA by +4.3. In both cases, the President is ahead of his statistic from four years ago.

Your eyes are not fooling you on NEW MEXICO. There were two new polls for "Tierra el Encanto", but the polling average did not budge a bit: it stayed at exactly +9.33. Though this rarely happens, if the sum average value of the polls leaving the statistic is exactly that of the sum average value of those entering the statistic, then the top-and-bottom lines may shift a little, but the statistic itself stays the same. Two polls fell out of the statistic - a sum of 16, two new polls entered the statistic - a sum of 16. Here is a good time to make an important note. The one poll was actually older than two weeks ago two days ago, but the statistic for NM stayed put from 09/21 to 09/28, with nothing in between, and so the 2 week period from 09/21 counting backward stayed in the statistic until new data came in. That is usually how it works, that is standard method, and I apply it here as well. On this corresponding day in 2008, Obama was leading in NM by +5.80.

In sum total, of the 8 battlegrounds, there are techically only 7 (without OHIO), and Obama is leading in all of them.

No polls came in for RED STATES on this list, but one poll came in from a non-battleground, NORTH DAKOTA (DFM), showing Romney up by +13 in the state. This is less than the margins in the other three polls of ND for this year, but still decidedly better than McCain's margin from 2008. It is also relatively in line with the Nielson Brothers polling of SD.
On September 26, 2008, McCain was ahead in: WV (+5.30), MO (+3.80) NC (+2.70), IN (+2.20), NV (+1.70), OH (+1.40) and FL (+1.30)But Obama took the lead from McCain in VA on this day, it went from McCain +1.30 on 09/25 to Obama +0.40 on 09/26, plus Obama was ahead in:  NH (+1.30), MN (+4.00), WI (+4.10), PA (+4.30), CO (+5.00), MI (+5.60) and NM (+5.80). This means that on September 26, 2008, there 5 tossup states and 12 battleground states strictly within the +5 boundary. That is 5 more statistical battleground states than right now in 2012.

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Facit: in the BATTLEGROUNDS, President Obama is on decidedly and measurably better footing right now than he was exactly four years ago against John McCain and he increased his standing in 5 states over 09/27/2012 and remained steady in 1 state. Romney's battleground statistics were unmoved on 09/28.

Compared to 2008, Obama is doing better in all but three states on the list: WV (which is not even on the 2012 battleground list), IN and CO.


For the first time, OHIO's margin has moved above the national margin, but notice that the two states still closest to the national margin are: NEVADA (-0.10 under the margin) and OHIO (+0.74 above the margin). Remembering that OH and NV are the two best bellwethers in the nation, this tells me that the state polling overall is in line with the current national average.

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