The Q-Poll has trends and therefore is the one to watch. No poll predicts turnout.
Connecticut likely Democratic primary voters back challenger Ned Lamont 51 - 45 percent lead over incumbent Sen. Joseph Lieberman in the U.S. Senate race, according to a Quinnipiac University poll released today.
This compares to a 54 - 41 percent Lamont lead among likely Democratic primary voters in an August 3 poll by the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN-uh-pe-ack) University.
In this latest survey, 4 percent of likely Democratic primary voters remain undecided, but 90 percent of voters who name a candidate say their mind is made up.
Among Lamont supporters, 54 percent say their vote is mainly against Lieberman. Lieberman's support for the war in Iraq is the main reason they are voting for Lamont, 36 percent of Lamont voters say, while 54 percent say it is one of several reasons.
This remains a solid lead for Lamont, but there are several factors with summer polling:
- Likely voter models are tough to put together
- CT Democratic primaries historically skew liberal
- Intensity is unmeasured, as is GOTV
- Lamont's favorable/unfavorable: the unfavorable remain relatively low at 42-18%, so negative ads haven't worked
- Lieberman's have slightly improved at 40-34%, but he's the incumbent and is below 50%
- How much does Lieberman's support of the war in Iraq influence your decision to vote for Lamont - Is it the main reason you are voting for Lamont, is it only one of the reasons, or is it not a reason at all?
LIKELY DEM PRIME VOTERS
Main reason 36%
Only one reason 54
Not a reason at all 9
- The above means for 90% of voters the war matters (the national press conclusion), but that other factors matter for more than half the voters (the local conclusion, generally ignored by the national press).
Good analysis here at Mystery Pollster:
Regardless of the reasons for the change, this latest Quinnipiac snapshot of the race is probably the more accurate read, especially given that the results are closer to those obtained by Research 2000 and (if we believe the rumor) the internal Lamont tracking polls as well.
What is the reality? The challenge of polling in these situations makes it hard to know for sure, but we know that every recent public poll has shown Lamont running ahead of Lieberman. The two public polls conducted last week showed Lamont ahead by an average margin of 52% to 44%, and all of the public polls – including the mid-July Rasmussen survey -- all fell within +/- 3-4% of that average. And of course sampling error does not allow for the differences in the way the polls sample and select likely voters.
So Lamont was probably ahead last week among those who will cast ballots in tomorrow, but conclusions about last minute shifts in momentum are highly speculative. Political polling in this sort of race is a lot more art than science. If you live in Connecticut and care about the outcome, ignore the polls and go vote.
And some local thoughts from Colin McEnroe:
1. Turn-out will be higher than I thought on Tuesday. 30 percent is now not a crazy number.
2. The pro-Lamont bloggers have been gently invited by the Lamont campaign to do less hell-raising and more phone-banking. You won't see them pointing mini-cameras and barking out questions from now until Tuesday. Instead they've reverted into being pretty much regular campaign volunteers. I get the feeling that the "blackface incident" scared the Lamont campaign, and they don't want to spend a lot of energy on charges and counter-charges having to do with something like that. Jane Hamsher seems to have temporarily disappeared from her own blog, Firedoglake .
3. Today's Q poll showing Lamont with a six-point lead is closer to a real number. He's ahead but it's close.
4. If Lamont loses, one reason will be not the Country Club issue but its opposite. I think he might have hurt himself a little by getting, to steal an Elvis Mitchellism, more Mumia than thou. Just because the Revs. Sharpton and Jackson are willing to campaign for you infinitely doesn't mean you should accept every offer they make. Some voters find them off-putting.
5. Nobody knows what to make of all those thousands of new voter registrations and affiliation-switches.