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Early vote for Obama down 22 points from 2008

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By Doug Powers  •  October 30, 2012 02:27 PM

**Written by Doug Powers

A new Gallup survey found that among people who have cast early ballots, Mitt Romney leads 52-46 in a poll with a margin of error of three points. Politico calls that a draw so far. Okay, whatever. But comparing the early vote advantage this year to a similar point in time in 2008 as a way to measure enthusiasm unearths a finding that will nonetheless be troubling to Team Obama.

President and Michelle Obama have been encouraging voters to cast their ballots early. The good news for the president and first lady is that people appear to be heeding that call. John Nolte at Big Government has the bad news for them:

My pal Guy Benson found a juicy nugget that helps to bring more clarity to the news from Gallup yesterday that shows Romney leading Obama in the early vote by a full seven points, 52-45%. Almost exactly four years ago (October 28, 2008), according to Gallup, Obama was massacring John McCain among early voters with a fifteen-point lead, 55-40%. That means, at least according to Gallup, that Obama’s early vote advantage has dropped 22 points when compared to ’08.

Benson also notes that the percentage of voters who have or intend to vote early was 33% in 2008 and remains at 33% today. As Don Surber said in this tweet, “People don’t wait in line to vote for the status quo[.]”

In his email to me, Benson makes The Point: “Obama had a 55/40 lead on McCain with early voters in ’08, but only led by 3 pts with the election day crowd. He ended up winning by 7 overall.”

It has more to do with enthusiasm and less to do with fears of overflowing toilets on November 6th.

Meanwhile, a new poll from NPR — yes, NPR — shows Romney taking a slim overall lead and taking more independents aboard:

A new National Public Radio poll, which had President Obama leading Mitt Romney 51 percent to 44 percent four weeks ago, now has Mitt Romney on top, 48 percent to 47 percent, with the Republican benefiting from his debate performances.

The poll found that among likely voters, 34 percent said Romney’s debate performances made them more likely to vote for the challenger while 28 percent said they now are more likely to vote for the president. Among critical independent voters, though, Romney won big, with 37 percent saying they are now more likely to chose him compared to 21 percent for Obama.

But Democratic pollster Stanley Greenberg and Republican pollster Whit Ayres found that Obama leads by 4 points in the 12 battleground states that appear ready to pick the winner for the rest of the country next Tuesday. And they suggest that Romney’s post-debate surge has “stalled.”

The battleground state sample, according to Paul Bedard, was 35 percent Dem and 31 percent Republican as many pollsters to continue to insist on assuming turnout levels will be the same this year as they were in 2008.

**Written by Doug Powers

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