This is the "all polls included" version (Obama 46.3, Romney 45.7), which we will use during the conventions. Polls will be volatile for a while. In fact...
Nate Silver defines the expectation:
fact checks Paul Ryan:
FACT CHECK: Convention speakers stray from reality
Laying out the first plans for his party's presidential ticket, GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan took some factual shortcuts Wednesday night when he attacked President Barack Obama's policies on Medicare, the economic stimulus and the budget deficit.
looks at more media and fact checking on a different topic:
This doesn’t happen every day, but good for the Los Angeles Times for calling out the ubiquitous falsehood about Obama supposedly waiving welfare reform’s work requirement right in its headline:
Rick Santorum repeats inaccurate welfare attack on Obama
As Kevin Drum says: “it’s about time reporters and copy editors started putting this stuff front and center.” And, indeed, the LA Times does this, in its headline and with this highly placed sentence: “In fact, Obama did not waive the work requirement.”
lays it down:
Still, Romney and his advisors stand by an ad they know is wrong – or, at the very least, they are carelessly ignoring the facts. That ad is exploiting the worst instincts of white voters – as predicted and substantiated by the Republican Party’s own polling.
That leaves one inescapable conclusion: The Romney campaign is either recklessly ignorant of the facts, some of which they possess – or it is lying about why (and how) it is playing the race card.
Must-read piece. The inescapable conclusion is that Mitt Romney is a lying weasel who will break any rule to win. Nice to see it spread out there for all to inspect by an insider journalist. And it still won't win Michigan
At any rate, Fournier has confirmed from GOP strategists that angering blue collar whites is the goal of this strategy. We also know that the GOP has a history of using race-based messaging to appeal to this constituency. And we know Romney probably can’t win unless he pushes his white vote totals to record levels — hence the pollster’s claim that these attacks could make a difference on the margins.
What makes this all noteworthy is who Fournier is. He’s well respected in Washington journalism, having worked as the Associated Press’s Washington correspondent — where he was called on first in many presidential press conferences — before becoming editor in chief of the National Journal Group. Having him come out and explicitly charge the Romney campaign with race-baiting will make this a safer topic among some of the top-shelf commentator and journalist types who might otherwise have shied away from it.
Race baiting at the RNC
It may be subtle, but the Romney campaign's message is tailored to its supporters' implicit racial biases
Is Romney a Race Baiter?
But is it really true? Is race actually playing a key role in this campaign?
Some role, yes: The Romney welfare ad was not only an utter lie—the steps the Obama administration is considering are meant to allow states to get more people to work, not fewer—it was also a clear example of race baiting. One is hardly being paranoid to read this ad as referring to race by implication: Reagan’s use of the phrase “welfare queen” and the centrality of welfare to culture-war debates on race into the 1990s are hardly distant memories. Aside from Romney’s contortions over Massachusetts health-care reform, the ad is his lowest moment of the campaign.
But what about the other data points being widely cited as evidence of Romney’s racism? His comment about no one having to ask him to show his birth certificate qualifies, to me, as an awkward joke, not telegraphed xenophobia. Romney has made quite a few awkward jokes in the past, so there is precedent for reading his comment in that spirit. A misfire? Yes. A dog whistle to bigots? The case is strained.
Note to McWhorter: you don't need more than the one data point you already acknowledge. But let's talk about it and how much of a liar Romney is.
It has not escaped attention that Mitt Romney has built his entire campaign on, well, lies.
Anybody tuning in to the Republican National Convention on Tuesday night heard and saw “you didn’t build that” roughly fourteen gajillion times. The RNC’s stated theme of Day One was “We Built That.” Country singer Lane Turner unveiled his new protest song, “I Build That.” New conservative star Mia Love: "This is the America we know, because we built it!" Ann Romney proclaimed that her husband "was not handed success. He built it!"
On television, Romney’s main campaign theme is that President Obama has ended the work requirement in the 1996 welfare law and is instead sending out checks. In his speeches, and during the convention, the message is that President Obama has lectured small business owners that they didn’t build their own business. Swing-state denizens just tuning in to the campaign probably think the election is primarily a referendum on welfare reform.
Both charges are utter fabrications.
Whether undecided voters will vote for a proven liar that they don't like is a question begging for an answer.
If you have limited time to devote to following the presidential election this fall, I suggest you follow the data on just three states: Florida, Virginia, and Ohio. Mitt Romney's only likely path to victory over Barack Obama is to win those three states. Conversely, if Obama can carry just one of those states, he will likely win the election.
In one prominent example of the poor reviews for Christie, Fox News anchor Chris Wallace noted how long it took for the speech to mention Romney and called it “the most curious keynote speech I have ever heard. … For a moment, I forgot who was the nominee of the party.”
“I thought it was a tremendous disappointment,” added Republican strategist Alex Castellanos, saying the speech did nothing to advance the ball against Obama, or for Romney.
“My point is that it’s a nice [lesson] in the [tenets] of the Republican Party … but it didn’t have any purpose that served his party and his nominee,” he said. “It’s almost like he wanted to prove that he wasn’t just a guy who could turn tables over and speak truth to power.”
on Juan Williams' criticism of Ann Romney's speech:
Of course the Romney folks have free speech rights like everyone else, and they will use them. But in a campaign where Romney is stretching the truth far beyond the breaking point on his welfare ad and on other matters (my Post colleague Glenn Kessler, The Post’s fact-checker, has written powerfully about this problem), it’s especially important that the media not allow itself to be intimidated from tough, searching coverage and commentary about his campaign.
Some readers may be understandably impatient with media commenting on media and journalists writing at great length about fellow journalists, including their friends and colleagues. But there is no escaping the fact is that the battle over the media — and over what constitutes “fairness,” “balance,” and “accuracy” — is now a central question in American politics. It should not be evaded out of a mistaken reticence. And a quest for a phony sort “balance” can too easily become an excuse for giving in to bullying.
I want to tell you they marched out of the hall Tuesday night on fire for their side. But I was there and they did not. They walked out like people who weren’t quite sure what to think or how to feel but were hoping for the best.”