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Wednesday, September 08, 2004

AZ Republic Poll: Things Looking Bad for Kerry

Posted by DavidNYC

It looks as though the Arizona Republic wins the prize: They're releasing the first swing-state poll conducted entirely after the Republican convention. And it isn't pretty for our team (likely voters, 7/30 - 8/1 in parens):

Kerry: 38 (45)
Bush: 54 (48)
Other/undecided: 8 (7)
(MoE: ��4%)

We went from three points back to a whopping 16 points in just a month. No link is available yet - I pulled this one off of Polling Report - and there are no other internals available. I'm guessing, though, that Kerry's unfavorables have spiked. I say this because Bush's increase came entirely at Kerry's expense - the undecideds haven't budged. Of course, it's possible that this transfer of support took place because Bush's favorables went up, but somehow, that just doesn't seem to be as compelling an explanation.

Of course, I should caution that this is the widest lead we've yet seen in AZ, by a pretty substantial margin (suggesting to me that this may be a bit of an outlier). And it's only the second time since early June that Bush has registered over 50% in a straight horserace here. And obviously, this poll is definitely inflated by the RNC - but the last AZ Republic poll was taken right after the DNC, so that might have been an artificially close result.

But at the same time, this is pretty discouraging. I still firmly believe that Arizona is marching blue-ward - it just may be a little early to be whipping out the cans of teal paint. The silver lining, of course, is that we don't need AZ to win - in fact, I'd say it's not part of any non-landslide (or at least, hefty margin) victory scenario. But I'd still like to be able to threaten Bush here, help out our Congressional candidates (particularly Paul Babbitt in AZ-01), and lay the groundwork for future presidential victories in this state.

UPDATE: Larry in comments provides a link to the story.

Posted at 03:40 PM in Arizona | Technorati


The Oregonian is also reporting a new poll out that shows Bush up by one in Oregon:


Posted by: webgirl at September 8, 2004 04:45 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

The same company did two earlier polls in Arizona, both showing Bush +3.
Arizona is lost, even if this only is one poll, shoot me, but that's my opinion. I agree this is no sign at all of a broader landslide. Some states like Michigan aren't budging at all. Bush is up only 3 or 4 points overall in general. That's a lead that could easily be erased in the debates, or if Kerry actually stood for something substantive before then. Go beyond platitudes Kerry, give the voter something real to judge you on. Let the voter know exactly what you'd do differently.

Posted by: carol at September 8, 2004 04:56 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

On November 2, Bush will not triple his 2000 margin in AZ barring a nationwide defeat to the magnitude of 1980 or 1988. I agree with the assessment that Kerry is unlikely to win AZ, even though it's a long-term feather in the Dems' cap. Ultimately, I'm guessing Bush by about 3 will be the final outcome here. Poll reasults as off-the-wall as this don't scare me.

Posted by: Mark at September 8, 2004 05:13 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

AZ seems to be one of those states that none of the mainstream polling people want to poll. I honestly think that AZ will go red in 2004. If my memory is correct, the only poll to show AZ blue was done by Arizona State University. ASU currently has Bush up by 3.

On election day, we will know the results pretty early.

Kerry loses PA = Bush blowout.
Kerry wins FL or OH = Kerry squeaker.
Kerry wins WV, FL, & OH = Kerry blowout.

Posted by: DFuller at September 8, 2004 05:32 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Ohio seems to be the most critical one for Kerry.

Posted by: carol at September 8, 2004 05:56 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

There is a Gallup poll out showing Bush up by 10 (!!) in Ohio. Not good news, I'm afraid. I continue to believe that this may be the high point for Bush.

Posted by: erg at September 8, 2004 07:52 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Hard to belive Pres. Bush is up by 16 in AZ and only up by 5 in conservative VA. Just my feelings. I think Pres. Bush will win AZ, but only by 7.

Posted by: David at September 8, 2004 08:23 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment


It bothers me that Kerry seems to be focusing more on OH, WV, and MO more than FL. FL looks like it should be an easier win.

The other thing that bothers me is Kerry doesn't seem to be doing a lot to fire up the black vote. True blacks vote over 90% democratic but turnout and GOTV is very important and can make a huge difference. Look at the record black turnout for Clinton, it helped him win several states and kept the vote close in several others. Even if Kerry and Edwards are unlikely to win anywhere in the South outside Florida it can help the Senate races and force Bush to spend resources where he otherwise wouldn't have to.

In addition the efforts to disenfrancise the black vote in FL and elsewhere in 2000, 2002, and again in 2004 provide a great issue to attempt to increase turnout over. If Kerry and Edwards don't have time send Jessie Jackson, Sharpton, and Carter out to talk to the black community.

Posted by: Chris Stefan at September 9, 2004 03:46 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

David had mention not having a link on the latest AZ poll.

The only thing that has come up is the Arizona Republic article. Phoenix-based Market Solutions Group listed as conducting the poll. Here's the snippet of the article:

The Arizona Republic
Sept. 8, 2004 10:40 AM

President Bush emerged from the Republican National Convention with a surge of support that, if it lasts, would give him a solid win in Arizona, a new Arizona Republic Poll shows.

A survey of 600 likely voters found that if the election were held now, Bush would sweep Democratic Sen. John Kerry by 54-38 percent.

The 16-point gap was a dramatic shift from the 3-point spreads indicated in Arizona Republic Polls in June and at the conclusion of the Democratic National Convention in July.

In the latest poll, conducted by Phoenix-based Market Solutions Group Sept. 3-5 by random telephone calling throughout the state, only 7 percent of those surveyed said they were still undecided. More than one in five Democrats interviewed said they intended to vote for Bush. All three polls had a margin of error of plus or minus 4.0 percentage points, making the earlier findings a statistical tie. (( more ))


Posted by: Larry the Duck at September 9, 2004 05:42 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Kerry was a long shot at best to win AZ anyway. No reason to fret about him falling behind there. I'm a lot more concerned about two key states: FL and OH.

Terrorism is now the new national security boogeyman. Sure, we have to take terrorism seriously, but is it really our only concern? Seems to me that the Republicans are doing an excellent job getting people to focus on the scary issue of terrorism. They know it's a winning issue for them, even if they're actually underfunding The Homeland Security Dept. and wasting our resources in Iraq, and perhaps even stirring up more future terrorism in the process (which would consolidate their power even further).

Posted by: Rock_nj at September 9, 2004 08:44 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

People here keep insisting that AZ is going to be nothing but blue skies for the Democrats in the future. If the current GOP surge there is to believed, I'm afraid many Democrats may have been counting their chickens before they hatched. Remember, there is a big difference between the Hispanic and African-American communities in this country.The Hispanic vote does not mirror the African-American vote in voting overwhelmingly for the Democrats, regardless of who the candidates are. In fact, if NC gives any indication, there is a great deal of friction between the African-American and Hispanic communities.

Posted by: Pepe at September 9, 2004 09:07 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Hispanics tend to be a little more conservative on issues like abortion and other social issues than African Americans. In a good year, the Dems win 65% of the hispanic vote. Also, I imagine as hispanics become a bit more established in America, they might become a bit more conservative. It's one thing when your on the outside looking in, and another thing once you're established in a new country. AZ will probably slowly trend Democratic, but it won't be a surge. Bush will likely win AZ this year, and perhaps AZ will become a tossup in future elections, but a lot of that depends upon the candidates running and the issues of the day.

Posted by: Rock_nj at September 9, 2004 10:05 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

I think we need to keep the faith. Kerry is not out of this race by any means. The Gallup Ohio poll shows Bush with a 10 point lead, HOWEVER, with just registered voters the lead is 1 point. Bush is now on the defensive regarding his war record, the 1000+ war causalties, and the economy.

Last week I think will be Kerry's worst week (post convention) and that is when alot of these polls were taken. We have the debates next and I have seen some powerful anti-Bush ads.

Keep positive.


Posted by: Peter at September 9, 2004 10:25 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

I agree, there's no need to panic. But, I think it's reasonable at this point to start writing off some of the marginal states like AZ and CO. They were long shots for Kerry from the start, and he showed some promise there, but Bush will probably be able to pull out wins in those Republican leaning states.

Posted by: Rock_nj at September 9, 2004 10:45 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

CBS News now has the President up by 7 points among RVS. It appears the President is leading among independents now too. However, the 7 points is less than the Newsweek and Time polls.

Posted by: david at September 9, 2004 10:56 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Apparently, the Kerry campaign has decided not to advertise in CO or AZ now (although they might later). The prime targets among the Bush 2000 states are:

-- FL
-- OH
-- NH
-- WV
-- NV

Thefore Kerry has to take either FL, or OH or WV + NV to win.

I admit to being somewhat discouraged by the barrage of state polls showing Bush ahead. Even in NJ. my home state, a recent poll shows Kerry ahead by only 4 in RV, 2 in LV (although there are 12% undecideds, who break Democratic in NJ). I think NJ (because the north of NJ is a NY media market) may have shown an exaggerated impact of both conventions.

Posted by: erg at September 9, 2004 11:23 AM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Don't worry, Kerry will win NJ. You can tell something has changed in NJ in recent elections. NJ is a Democratic state. Kerry wins by at least 10%.

I think Kerry targeting those 5 key states is very good strategy. It would be nice if he pulled out a win in CO or FL, but it's not crucial. He wants to win, and winning means taking most of those five states. I'm glad to see his advisers are advising him well.

Posted by: Rock_nj at September 9, 2004 12:13 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

I maintain that any decision to limit Kerry's election hopes to five pink states will most likely fail. While Virginia and North Carolina probably aren't worth his time, I'm disgusted with the idea of conceding Arkansas, Missouri, Louisiana, Colorado and Arizona. If running a campaign targeting four or five swing states almost exclusively and completely ignoring at least 38 of the other states was a successful strategy, we'd be talking about Al Gore's re-election prospects right now.

Posted by: Mark at September 9, 2004 12:28 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Well, it's a matter of practicality now. Time s running short for Kerry. He has to focus his efforts where he can realisticly win. Getting over 270 EVs is the key to winning. If he can win NH, OH, and FL, he wins.

Posted by: Rock_nj at September 9, 2004 12:39 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Polls on AZ are apt to be skewed on account of the large spanish speaking population of the state. I don't know how careful pollsters are to gather data on those voters (who admittedly turn out at a rate less than the overall population) but I wouldn't be surprised to discover they are just neglected, as running a poll in spanish and english is pricey and complicated. It's a good reason to think that the poll is pretty skewed away from the democratic voting hispanic population.

Posted by: lenhart at September 9, 2004 01:08 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

rock, the only problem with that philosophy (as Gore can attest to) is that if you don't win those three states you're putting all your marbles on, you don't win the election. If the Dems want to be the party of 22 U.S. states and ignore the rest, they'll continue to lose Presidential elections and Congressional seats. I'm not advocating Kerry campaigning in Idaho, but is Arkansas really worth surrendering in September when all but one credible poll has showed it tied for months? I guess I wasn't expecting two months ago that Kerry's campaign would lapse into the Gore mode of desperately needing to run the table on the handful of swing states they deem winnable while abandoning the rest.

Posted by: Mark at September 9, 2004 01:30 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Rasmussen puts Bush ahead +0.7 nationally, a week after the GOP convention! some bounce!

Posted by: Ed at September 9, 2004 01:38 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

If anything, these skewed Republican polls are getting us nervous, edgy Kerry supporters more fired up. That's a good thing and will help increase turn out at the polls in November.

I'm waiting for the October Osama surprise.

Posted by: Shar at September 9, 2004 02:38 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

Actually the black community is quite conservative on social issues; abortion, gay marriage, vouchers, but these issues don't determine their votes. Affirmative Action, Economy, Jobs, profiling, and ABB are the issues that will likely matter when they go vote.

Ohio hasn't changed much in the last couple of weeks. We're still losing jobs here. Don't believe the Gallup poll hype.

Posted by: pc at September 9, 2004 06:07 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

The osama surprise is here:


Posted by: Ed at September 9, 2004 07:39 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment

I'm a little doubtful personally that so many polls would end up with a skewed Republican designation suddenly. The other possibility is that the Republican Convention led many indies and a few Dems to switch over to self-id themselves as Republicans (because they were conservative Democrats anyway).

Posted by: erg at September 9, 2004 08:59 PM | Permalink | Edit Comment | Delete Comment