Tuesday, August 10, 2004

Revisiting The Democratic Convention

On August 1, I published a review of Kerry’s pre-Convention position, so that a more detailed review of the Convention’s effect could be measured. I have not seen all the data I would like, but I have seen enough to present a preliminary view of the results. For the pre-Convention data, I found internals from Marist, Pew, Fox News, the LA Times, the CBS/New York Times, Quinnipiac, CNN/USA Today/Gallup, NPR, and the NBC News/Wall Street Journal polls. For the post-Convention data, I found internals from the Marist, Fox News, CNN/USA Today/Gallup, Democracy Corps, and the American Research Group.

I have listed the results for eight key internal factors. If you’re looking for the overall poll numbers, you can find that everywhere else. Before the Convention, 85.4% of Democrats said they planned to vote for Kerry. That dropped to 84.7% after the Convention, which is not at all good for Kerry. Independents voting for Kerry, however, rose from 42.0% to 45.0%, and GOP support for Kerry rose from 5.8% to 7.0%. GOP support for Bush fell from 89.2% to 86.7%. However, Independents’ support for Bush rose from 37.6% to 39.0%, and Democrat support for Bush rose from 8.8% to 9.3%. Certainly not as expected!

Men supported Bush over Kerry 47.0% to 43.5% before the Convention. After the Convention, that margin increased to a 51.0% to 40.0% lead. Before the Convention, Women supported Kerry over Bush 47.0% to 40.5%. That lead also increased, now 50.0% to 38.0% Kerry over Bush. More than a few couples may have arguments on this election.

Bush’s Job Approval before the Convention was an average of 47.8%, but fell after the Convention to 46.8%. Kerry’s Personal Favorability Average climbed from 40.7% to 53.8% after the Convention, his biggest gain. But Bush also gained, his Personal Favorability rising from 45.3% to 50.5% after the Convention.

Finally, when asked who they expect to win the election this November, before the Democratic Convention, 67.3% of Democrats said Kerry would win. That rose to 78.0% after the Convention, a real shot in the arm for confidence. Democrats saying Bush would win fell from 18.7% before the Convention, to 13.0% after the Convention. Republicans saying Kerry would win the election were 10.3% before the Convention, but rose slightly to 11.0% after the Convention. But Republicans saying Bush would win the election were at 77.3% before the Convention, and rose to 80.0% after the Convention.

The reason Kerry only enjoyed a small bounce from the Convention is apparent from an interesting effect; Kerry gained, but so did Bush. President Bush will certainly be working on his Job Approval ratings and trying to win over women, but the question I am most curious about now, is what effect the GOP convention will have, on both campaigns.

Stay tuned…

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