In another sign that the general-election campaign season has begun, the folks at Gallup have kicked off their daily tracking poll pitting GOP nominee Mitt Romney against President Barack Obama.
Their initial finding: Too close to call.
As you can see, Romney is up by two, within the poll’s margin of error. Contrary to the insistence of some that “there’s no way X can win,” I think we’re going to see it bounce around in that territory until sometime after Labor Day. In part, that’s testimony to the skill of our political professionals, who through polling, messaging and marketing manage to split us almost right down the middle.
The polling average compiled at Real Clear Politics tells a similar story, putting Obama up by 3 points, roughly the advantage that he has maintained since September.
If I had to bet this far out, I’d say that’s where the race will end up come November, with Obama winning by three to four percentage points. But as they say in the press box, that might be how it plays out on paper, and they don’t play this game on paper.
– Jay Bookman