Where Did Those Palin Voters Come From?
By: Mark W Adams

I'm not a big fan of the Gallup Daily Tracking Polls, but it's the little engine that runs the horse-race coverage and it's showing a dramatic 12 point swing with Obama down 5% from his high at 50% last Monday and McCain is up 7 points from his low 41% during the midpoint of the Democratic Convention.

Prior to Convention Craziness, they were essentially tied with each at 45% or Obama would be up a point or two, but still leaving anywhere from 10% to 12% undecided. As I said in my last post, post convention bounces do just that -- bounce.

Obama peaked and has leveled off and McCain is now on his way up and may (or may not) out do Obama's bounce and reach above the magic 50% number. I kinda doubt it though since Obama reached 49%-50% midweek of the Democratic Convention and McCain didn't even start to move up until Friday when he reached the tie point of 45% they both were sitting at during the beginning of August.

Now the undecided bloc stands at 7% or so and while Obama waits out the Palin bounce at the old 45% tie point, I believe we'll see a new equilibrium at around 46%-47% within another week, all things being equal. Net result of all the hoopla of the last head-spinning days is that 3% of electorate made a choice, probably not a very firm one at that.

So, while it does seem something very weird happened and that Sarah Palin moved an amazing 12% of voters in a few days time -- pushing Obama down 5% and McCain up 7%, what really happened is the pool of undecided voters got a bit smaller, by less than a third. Tomorrow well have a good idea if McCain has peaked or if his full bounce will reach as high as Obama's.

Obama's bounce was only around 5 or 6 points from just prior to picking Biden and his Convention. McCain's bounce from the steady-state where they were tied before that time has not been as good -- although he has rebounded very well from the lows he was getting in the middle of the Democratic Convention.

Bottom line, if McCain doesn't reach 50% like Obama did, I'm not (yet) impressed.