About the new Gallup Poll showing Obama ahead NATIONALLY among likely voters by 2% and ahead by a somewhat higher percentage among registered voters (in the "expanded" model):
I'll be writing more about Gallup's so-called "expanded" model, which contains some major flaws. The expanded model looks for a very high turnout among the "new" Democratic voters. We heard the same thing in 2004, where there was high Democratic turnout -- which was offset by extremely high Republican turnout.
We also heard in 2004 (from Gallup and others) that 8 out-of-9 Independent voters were breaking for Kerry, WHICH TURNED OUT TO BE ABSOLUTELY UNTRUE.
In 2004, Gallup also said Bush would win PA; he didn't; and that Kerry would win OH, which he didn't.The expanded model over-represents votes in a number of states that Obama is already going to win, including DC (not a state), California, New York, Illinois, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Michigan. It doesn't matter in terms of electoral vote whether he wins those states 51-49 or 90-10.
Also, the "expanded" model doesn't include the Bradley Effect, which means Obama polls better than he does on election day (as happened in the PA Primary). Ironically, Obama's own internal polls (showing PA as close) are probably a better model than Gallup's.
On "likely voters": In past elections, between one-in-four and one-in-five "likely voters" did not vote. Among registered voters, the ratio of non-voters is significantly higher. I believe Barack Obama probably will win a majority of the votes cast in the U.S. However, because he's getting a disproportionate number of those votes in states McCain is NOT contesting, the Republican candidate conceivably could win a majority of the electoral votes.
That's a major reason for Obama's panicked return to Pittsburgh, which is the wrong city for him to visit, since he's already going to win the 'Burgh. McCain and Palin are going to the right places (including Beaver County, Hershey, and State College).
Note: If John Kerry had gotten 150,000 more votes in Ohio, he would have won a majority of electoral votes. Yet countrywide, Bush still would have won by 2.9 million ballots.
If John McCain wins FL, OH, and PA, he will be the next President of the United States. Keep your eye on Zogby, which hit the 2000 race dead-center.