Posted by: andrew1906 | June 20, 2008

Newsweek has Obama up by 15 points

Sounds like good news, right?

Well, I suppose it is, just a few things you’ll want to keep in mind.

First, this is the first (and only) such poll with such a wildly exaggerated lead for Obama. I’m automatically suspicious of this and – you should be too. Let’s look for subsequent polls to verify this. The guys over at MSNBC were practically popping champagne corks tonight but – it’s just too early to tell anything. It’s like being up by 12 in the second quarter in Game 7 of the NBA Finals. Smile slightly, but hold your breath.

Second, you should know that Michael Dukakis had a 17 point lead at this point in time in the 1988 Bush/Qualye election. It evaporated completely in the few weeks running up to the general election (he got creamed, only winning 10 states).

Good news, though. In 2004, Kerry never led Bush in the general election (after March) on any major poll by more than three points – and he only led seven days out of the last 60 in the general election. Bush, in turn, never led Kerry in any major poll during this time by more than eight points. Take a look at the polling data.

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