Monday, September 15, 2008

Is New York in a Red State of Mind?

The New York Post chronicles some very interesting trends in polling:

BOOSTED by the selection of Sarah Palin as his running mate, Republican John McCain has experienced a surge of support among women in heavily Democratic New York state - where he has closed the gap with Barack Obama, new private polls show.

The internal Republican and Democratic polls, details of which were provided to The Post, have stunned members of both parties - and produced deep worries among Democrats.

One great concern for Democrats is that the data show a continuous movement toward the McCain-Palin ticket by women, a majority of whom traditionally favor Democrats.

The movement by women toward McCain is being credited to Democratic attacks on Alaska Gov. Palin, last week's "lipstick on a pig" crack by Obama and to the continuing unhappiness by female Democrats over Obama's failure to pick Hillary Rodham Clinton as his running mate.

"If it winds up being tight in New York, that means McCain wins the election nationally," said a prominent Democrat familiar with some of the polling data.

A prominent Republican familiar with the results said, "It really is something, because we just assumed Obama would carry such a heavily Democratic state like New York with no difficulty."

While my heart soars at the very idea of Obama struggling to hold onto a reliable Democratic stronghold, based on Doc Paul's experiences as a ten-year resident of the state, the logical part of my brain is urging caution. I'll leave it to him to share the details of his legislative adventures if he wishes, but regardless, I am not so sure the Empire State is ready to fall into the Republican column on the electoral map.

However, if Obama's lead diminishes to the point where he is forced to run ads, thus depleting his considerable campaign assets, that's all to the good. As it is, he's fighting to keep Minnesota, Washington(!), Pennsylvania (go red this time, PA!), Wisconsin, Ohio and Michigan. It's a comfort to know that he may also have to focus his money and attention on a state that was supposed to be a gimme. Poor Obie, I'm sure he's hoping for change -- and quick!

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