The Herald's premature evaluation--updated!


In today's Boston Herald cover story, reporter Hillary Chabot writes:

Barack Obama’s divided and poorly timed convention has given him no boost in tracking polls, leaving him in danger of trailing Republican John McCain by the time the GOP conclave ends next week....

Polls showing McCain holding down Obama in the polls despite the nationally televised convention, and no bounce from Obama’s long-awaited running mate pick - an event that pollsters say ususally draws at least a two-percentage point gain....

Obama and McCain are neck and neck in the national polls despite three days of glowing speeches about the Illinois senator during a highly publicized convention viewed by 22 million people. [emph. added]

Okay: if you're an Obama supporter, the lack of a bounce from the Biden pick is worrisome. But intentionally or not, Chabot is being a bit slippery here.

Exhibit A for her claim that Obama and McCain are neck and neck "despite three days of glowing speeches" about Obama is the latest Gallup Daily poll, which shows Obama with a 45-44 lead among registered voters. The problem with linking this claim and this poll is that the Gallup survey comprises Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday--in other words, two days of the DNC, not three. [Update: A DQM reader notes that, unless Gallup was calling people after 11 p.m. on Tuesday, those numbers only reflect one day of the convention. Even worse.] Chabot also cites the most recent Rasmussen Reports poll, which was released yesterday at 9:30 AM--i.e., also after two days of the convention.

This gets us to the bigger problem with Chabot's story. She's basically calling the convention a bust at its halfway point--and before Obama, who's previously proven himself to be a pretty good orator, has actually addressed the gathering. (Chabot acknowledges the fact that Obama hasn't yet spoken, but doesn't let it get in the way of her analysis.)

The usefulness (or lack thereof) of the DNC to Obama is a perfectly reasonable subject. But this strikes me as a botched job.

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