For the best data on the presidential election, you really need to go to RealClearPolitics.com. It’s the most important poll, apart from the real one in November, because RCP averages out the data of all the biggest polls. As of today it shows a very close race. But pull up their Electoral College map and look at the states individually, and you will notice something striking. Check the history of polls in the toss-up states, and you will see that Romney has consistently trailed Obama in almost all of them. It’s always been close, but it’s almost always Obama edging out Romney, going back many months, and trending over many different polls. Again, this is in the swing states, the toss-ups.
For the crucial state of Ohio, RCP lists a history of thirty-five Obama-versus-Romney polls, going back to December. Romney came out on top in only four of them. It’s always very close, but the weight of the averages is clear. Obama also carried Ohio in 2008. Today the RCP average of polls has Obama with a lead of 4.8 points in Ohio.
In Virginia, a list of thirty-five polls going back to last year shows Romney beating Obama in only eleven of them. Always very close– These are the toss-up states. Today’s RCP has Obama up by 2.8 in Virginia.
Colorado has a history of twelve polls between Obama and Romney, going back to February. Of those, two were ties and Obama won in the other ten. His edge over Romney in Colorado is presently an average of three points.
In Michigan, out of twenty-five polls going back to December, Romney led in six of them. In the current average of Michigan polls, Obama leads by just over six points.
In Pennsylvania, with twenty electoral votes, RealClearPolitics.com lists thirty-three polls dating back over a year. Romney has led in only three of them. He trails the president in Pennsylvania today by 7 points.
Florida is the most evenly split of the toss-ups. The history of the polls there are much closer. Forty-seven polls are listed for Florida. Of these, Obama came out ahead in twenty-four of them, and there were three ties. In the RCP average of polls, Obama leads Romney today in Florida by a meager 1.4 points.
In excessively conservative Iowa, Romney still trails Obama by one point, and has only topped him in three of the fourteen polls RCP has on record for the state.
As of right now, in the overall electoral college count, RCP has Obama over Romney by two hundred-forty-seven over one hundred-ninety-one. A hundred votes are up for grabs. Two hundred and seventy is the winning figure.
The polling numbers have remained amazingly steady over time. The economy remains flat, but apparently Americans remember when this downturn began, and that the name of the president then was not Barack Obama. They may also remember that it took more than three years to recover from the Great Depression, which remains the only economic disaster worse than the one we’re in now. This election will come down to turn-out, and the Democrats will need a larger than average turn-out to overcome the new voter-suppression laws in place in so many states.