Gallup:So I've spent the past couple of days at meetings of various kinds in New York, and there was certainly a sense of impeding doom among many Democrats here. The cute analogy that I've come up with are that Democrats are like Cubs fans -- they assume that something will go wrong until proven otherwise.
With that said, people have become decidely more optimistic in the past 24-48 hours as the economy has returned to the center of the national debate. Obama's never going to be a Clintonesque natural out there on the stump in responding to the economy -- he might have to repeat a message three times where with Clinton it would have sunken in the first one.
But McCain seems to be struggling to come up with anything coherent to say about the issue, and his "fundamentals of our economy are strong" statement was a capital-G gaffe. When I saw McCain and Palin give successive speeches on MSNBC on Monday morning, and McCain repeated his "fundmentals" line and then Palin repeated her "thanks, but no thanks" line on the Bridge to Nowhere, I got the sense that maybe Steve Schmidt isn't quite the messaging genius that he's been made out to be.
Keep in mind this works on a 3 day rolling average, meaning 1/3 of the participants were polled on Sunday before the big losses on Monday and today.
Might be thinking "big deal, it's all about the electoral college", but what we saw after McCain's convention bounce might help us model an impending bump in Obama's state polling numbers. Remember, Obama still led many electoral vote projections well after McCain had taken the lead nationally. A little bit after that however the state polls started swinging decidedly to McCain. If Obama takes leads nationally (which by all indications from the market today and the absence of Sunday's #'s from the tracking polls indicates) are we to expect a tightening of the race in Ohio to maybe a tie? Maybe Obama will pull clearly ahead in Virginia? Needless to say, McCain's best bet in getting voters, Sarah Palin, is all but absent from the news cycle because of the economy where McCain is admittedly weak.
Just remember how much stock some of you have been placing in polls lately, and get ready for them to start shifting over the course of the next week.