|If the Election Were Held Today|
276 Electoral Votes
153 solid, 88 likely, 35 iffy
174 solid, 53 likely, 35 iffy
Analysis Oct. 20, 11:00 a.m. ET: No change in the electoral vote count yet, but underlying currents are moving to Kerry. Latest polls suggest that a Florida shift to Kerry is more plausible than an Ohio shift to Bush, and a Kerry upset in West Virginia is more plausible than a Bush upset in New Jersey. The quantitative basis for ceding West Virginia to Bush is thin, and online and Democratic polls are making it thinner. We await the first neutral phone poll of October.
Update 1:15 p.m. ET: New polls give Bush hope in New Hampshire but shore up New Mexico and Wisconsin for Kerry. The gradual isolation of Gallup in the latter two states makes us wonder whether to reexamine Gallup's numbers elsewhere.
Note: Analysis in some states is based on surveys not yet posted in the tables.
How to read the tables: The following tables track the latest polls. The first table shows surveys in the most closely contested states. The second table shows surveys in states that are expected to go to one candidate but might be picked off by the other. In the left column, each state and its electoral votes are marked dark red, light red, light blue, or dark blue, depending on which candidate is leading in that state (red for Bush, blue for Kerry) and with what degree of certainty. Slateawards electoral votes based on our poll analysis, which appears in the right-hand column. We color a state gray if it's likely to split its electoral votes. New polls are highlighted in yellow. (A) means a poll was automated. (O) means it was online. (D) means the polling firm is Democratic; (R) means the firm is Republican.
The other tables below track national surveys. In the Trial Heat, respondents were asked for whom they would vote. On Job Approval, they were asked whether they approve or disapprove of Bush's performance. On Re-Elect, they were asked whether Bush deserves to be re-elected or not. On Right Direction, they were asked whether things are going in the right direction or are on the wrong track. On Favorable Rating, they were asked whether they have a favorable or unfavorable impression of each candidate.
Bush iffy. Mason-Dixon's survey is newer than UNF's and more consistent with most recent polls. Survey USA has Kerry ahead but is automated and excludes Nader. Still, Bush has now led in just three of six nonpartisan conventional October polls. Kerry had two; the other was a tie. Very dangerous for the president. We'll withhold reevaluation until we see consecutive surveys showing Kerry ahead.
(Read Slate's dispatch from Florida.)
|49||45||1||3||10/12-14||Strategic Vision (R)|
|47||49||N/A||4||10/2-5||American Research Group|
3-1 split for Kerry. In 2000, Bush lost Maine by 5 points and lost its second CD by 1 point. If he loses the state by fewer than 4 points, as polls suggest, he'll probably win the second CD and pick up 1 EV, leaving Kerry the other 3 EVs.
(Read Slate's dispatch from Maine.)
Kerry likely. He has led in every conventional poll for the past month.
(Read Slate's dispatch from Minnesota.)
Bush likely. He has led in every conventional poll.
(Read Slate's dispatch from Nevada.)
Kerry likely. ARG has Bush up 1 but has been consistently at odds with three other conventional pollsters and the Zogby online survey, all of which have shown Kerry leading by 4 to 7 points.
Kerry iffy. This call seemed shaky to us yesterday, but critical mass is now gathering behind Kerry. ARG and Zogby are backing up the Albuquerque Journal poll, leaving Gallup as the sole survey leaning to Bush.
(Read Slate's dispatch from New Mexico.)
Kerry iffy. ABC's numbers fit the October trend of conventional surveys. Fox's do not. Both automated polls are trending slightly to Kerry, though the online poll isn't. The pattern is clear enough that we'll need double confirmation of the Fox numbers before reevaluating this state.
(Read Slate's dispatch from Ohio.)
Kerry likely. He leads barely but consistently in all nonpartisan October polls.
(Read Slate's dispatch from Pennsylvania.)
Kerry iffy. Throw out this month's Democratic and Republican surveys, which favor their respective candidates, and you're left with Gallup as the only one of five nonpartisan pollsters to give Bush the lead. ARG has a tie; the rest have Kerry ahead.
|49||44||N/A||5||10/7-11||NAU||Bush pretty safe. Kerry's debate surge brought him within 5 points, but that's probably his high tide. |
(Read Slate's dispatch from Arizona.)
|55||41||N/A||4.1||10/5-7||Survey USA (A)|
(Read Slate's dispatch from Missouri.)
Kerry probably safe. He leads by 5 or more points in five of six October polls.
(Read Slate's dispatch from Oregon.)
(Read Slate's dispatch from Washington.)
(Read Slate's dispatch from West Virginia.)
|Bush Job Approval||Trend|
|Right Direction/Wrong Track||Trend|
|Favorable/Unfavorable Rating||Bush Trend||Kerry Trend|