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  • Ohioblog: A Swing State Journal





    Monday, October 18, 2004

    Polls, gaffes and Ohio's still in the heart of it all 

    The latest USA Today/CNN/Gallup Poll shows President Bush has made significant gains in the past week, taking an 8 percentage point lead among likely voters over Sen. John Kerry, 52 to 44. It's closer, 49 percent to 46 percent, among registered voters. Whatever the numbers, there has been movement away from Kerry, who held a 1 percentage point lead a week ago. Some attribute it to a backlash against Kerry for using Mary Cheney, the lesbian daughter of Vice President Cheney, to personalize the senator's believe that people don't choose to be gay but simply are what they are.

    Though the president gained on eight of nine sets of issues about which Gallup polled, commentators from the Chicago Sun-Times' Robert Novak to NPR's Cokie Roberts believe Kerry's reference to Mary Cheney may prove more costly than it a person might expect. Ohioblog thought Kerry chose unwisely when he personalized his message, but Time's Matthew Cooper wonders who does get to talk about Mary Cheney? ``The family,'' Cooper writes, ``could hardly expect to protect mary's privacy once she began running her father's operations at the Bush-Cheney re-election campaign last year.'' What's more, before the Kerry remark, ``the vice president had earlier put his daughter's sexualty squarely in the public arena.''

    As interesting as the Mary Cheney issue might be, it did not result in a 9 percentage point shift. And don't be sure the shift is real where it matters. An International Herald Tribune report in The New York Times noted a poll done for the Washington Post (lots of newspapers in this sentence) showed Kerry with a 10-point lead, 53 to 43 percent, in 13 battleground states that should decide the election. In fact, the Associated Press reduces the number of contuing battlegrounds to eight states - Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire and Nex Mexico. Of that number, AP concludes whoever takes two of the states among Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania will win the White House. So Ohio continues to matter more than ever and the candidates had better watch what they say around here during the next two weeks.

    posted by Ohioblog: A Swing State Journal at 10:19 AM



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