From an internal campaign memo written by Big Mac's pollster, Bill McInturff:
The McCain campaign has made impressive strides over the last week of tracking.
The campaign is functionally tied across the battleground states with our numbers IMPROVING sharply over the last four tracks. . . . all signs say we are headed to an election that may easily be too close to call by next Tuesday.
The race has moved significantly over the past week, closing to essentially tied on the last two-day roll. These gains are coming from sub-groups it should be possible to sustain over the next week, including:
- Non-college men;
- Rural voters, both men and women;
- Right-to-life voters; and most encouragingly;
- We are beginning to once again get over a 20% chunk of the vote among soft Democrats.
Importantly as well, our long identified target of Walmart women - those women without a college degree in households under $60,000 a year in income are also swinging back solidly in our direction.
Finally, in terms of critical improvement, even as this track shows more Republicans voting for us than Democrats supporting Obama, we are witnessing an impressive pop with Independent voters. . . .
This has been the week where Joe the Plumber has literally become a household name. An astounding 59% of voters in these battleground states have heard a lot about this story, 83% have heard a lot or some about this episode.
The 59% dwarfs the other stories/thematic elements we are tracking this week.
The campaigns relentless focus has helped strengthen our margins on the issue of taxes and broadened as well to the attribute of handling the economy and jobs. . . .
In our tracking, now 59% of battleground voters describe Senator Obama as being a liberal, a percentage that is higher than previous Democrat losers Gore/Kerry, and significantly higher than for President Clinton and President Carter.
A majority (54%) of voters profile as saying Senator Obama is more liberal than they see themselves politically.
As Senator Obamas profile as a liberal increases, it has helped further erode his support among key sub-groups.