Presidential Polls 2012: Race is a Tie and the Final Debate Will Not Change Anything
With the presidential race in a statistical tie, it seems President Obama has stemmed Romney's post-first debate surge. With less than three weeks until Election Day, and only one debate left, it is unlikely anyone will really pull ahead significantly before November 6. While the Romney campaign's prospects have certainly improved in recent weeks, they are still down significantly in swing states. Barack Obama still has an advantage in the Electoral College.
While Romney could definitely use an Electoral College boost, there isn't really anything he can do to make it happen. He hit his high watermark after the debate, and it seems both candidates have the feeling that the only place they can go from here is down. So they are each going to be very careful in the final debate and other campaign appearances not to make any gaffes. Though Romney has a large weak point for being a flip-flopper, as of late with his moderate reset, it remains to be seen if Obama's “Romnesia” characterization will have any resonance with undecided voters.
The Romnesia line has potential as it'd make voters think, "what does Romney actually stand for?” in the voting booth. The claim that the only thing Romney really believes in is the fact that he should be president does have a nice ring to it. But whether it will actually cause people to vote for Obama is another story. There are third party candidates and there is the option of not voting at all. Not voting for Romney does not necessarily mean voting for Obama.
Other than the Romnesia line there are unlikely to be any big changes or new themes for the rest of the election. Most voters have already decided who they are voting for, and the campaign has surely settled with their narratives by now. The foreign policy debate has the potential to cause a candidate to surely lose but not surely win. Foreign policy is Obama's strong suit, but he can't let his overconfidence lead him into the listlessness that characterized his first debate. Romney will surely have talking points with memorized names of Middle Eastern towns, but specifics on actual policy will be light. The next day Democrats will call Romney a warmonger, Republicans will call Obama weak, and undecided voters will still be undecided.
It's the part of the campaign where we all just wait for voting day. We hear about “undecided” voters and realize that some are just waiting until voting day to decide. The race is a toss-up and we wait for the media to tell us what the next big game changer will be. Speaking of which, don't the latest job numbers come out a few days before the election?