It has been a wild couple of weeks in the Presidential polling game, with Democratic contender John Kerry losing several states,President Bush obtaining a sizable lead, and then the race coming back to a statistical dead heat. Electoral-Vote.com has Bush at 256 electoral votes, Kerry at 239, and effectively 13 states play (Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Maine, Maryland, Minnesota, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin) and the trends within the states are divergent because of different polls being used. If John Kerry can hold this trend up, he may have a shot… but it looks to me that he may not win Ohio.
Rasmussen Reports is indicating a similar picture, but with Bush in the electoral college lead at 213 to 189, and 136 votes up in the air. Notably different is how Rasmussen does the calculating. Whereas Electoral Vote will award a state’s votes for 1-4% leads, Rasmussen will not, thus creating a higher swing number.
Notably important: ARKANSAS. Bill Clinton’s home state went solidly for W in 2000, the race is a dead heat according to Zogby.
MARYLAND: This usually solid blue state is home to another dead heat. MD went for Gore in a big way in 2000, but Survey USA has Bush and Kerry in a statistical lock.
PENNSYLVANIA: What had been trending towards Bush has now shifted back to Kerry.
OHIO: Remains a weakly Bush state. Bush needs it to win, but Kerry does not.
FLORIDA: We may be counting and recounting for years in Florida. The race is still far too close to name a leader in all polls.
I wouldn’t put too much stock into polls, though… the bigpoll is the one which matters most. November 2: don’t forget to vote.