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McCain Goes After Obama in Victory Speech

It seems John McCain knows who his general election opponent will be. In his victory speech last night, McCain took a veild swipe at Barack Obama on his message of hope.

Hope, my friends, is a powerful thing. I can attest to that better than many, for I have seen men’s hopes tested in hard and cruel ways that few will ever experience. And I stood astonished at the resilience of their hope in the darkest of hours because it did not reside in an exaggerated belief in their individual strength, but in the support of their comrades, and their faith in their country. My hope for our country resides in my faith in the American character, the character which proudly defends the right to think and do for ourselves, but perceives self-interest in accord with a kinship of ideals, which, when called upon, Americans will defend with their very lives.

To encourage a country with only rhetoric rather than sound and proven ideas that trust in the strength and courage of free people is not a promise of hope. It is a platitude.

When I was a young man, I thought glory was the highest ambition, and that all glory was self-glory. My parents tried to teach me otherwise, as did the Naval Academy. But I didn’t understand the lesson until later in life, when I confronted challenges I never expected to face.

I did not see his speech, but on paper, it is very powerful. The problem is, can McCain actually portray himself as the real candidate of hope. He has a very unique history that could play well if used effectively. Will an Obama vs. McCain campaign result in hope vs. real hope?

Begich Leading by 1,022

With about 24,000 votes yet to be counted, Democratic challenger Mark Begich leads Stevens Republican incumbent by 1,022 votes.

A vote to outs the convicted Senator Ted Stevens has been postponed as Alaska awaits the results of the election.

“After talking with many of my colleagues, it’s clear there are sufficient votes to pass the resolution regarding Senator Stevens,” DeMint said.

“The question now is timing. Some who support the resolution believe we should address this after the results of his election are confirmed in Alaska. For this reason, I will ask the conference to postpone the vote on Senator Stevens until Thursday,” DeMint said.

Stevens faces up to 35 years in prison.

Rasmussen 2012 GOP Primary Poll

Here is the first poll conducted by Rasmussen for the 2012 Republican primary.

Sarah Palin: 64%
Mike Huckabee: 12%
Mitt Romney: 11%
Bobby Jindal: 4%
Charlie Crist: 2%
Tim Pawlenty: 1%

The results are far different from the three other poll taken, showing Romney the frontrunner followed by Huckabee then Palin. Considering the poll was taken the day after the election, should be taken into account as Palin is still very fresh in everyone’s memories. Plus, this is the first poll that includes some lesser known potential candidates such as Jindal and Pawlenty.

Palin is view most favorably among the potential candidates. 91% of Republicans have a favorable opinion of Palin, that includes 65% who have a very favorable opinion of her. 81% have a favorable opinion of Romney, 80% of Huckabee, 40% of Jindal (39% don’t have an opinion) and 36% of Pawlenty (43% don’t have an opinion).

This national telephone survey of 1,000 Likely Republican Voters was conducted by Rasmussen Reports November 5, 2008. The margin of sampling error for the survey is +/- 3 percentage points with a 95% level of confidence.

USA Today/Gallup: McCain +4 (or +10)

McCain got a significant bump from the Republican National Convention, now leading Barack Obam four points among registered voters and ten points among likely voters.

Registered Voters

Barack Obama: 46% (-4)
John McCain: 50% (+7)

Likely Voters

Barack Obama: 44%
John McCain: 54%

• Before the convention, Republicans by 47%-39% were less enthusiastic than usual about voting. Now, they are more enthusiastic by 60%-24%, a sweeping change that narrows a key Democratic advantage. Democrats report being more enthusiastic by 67%-19%.

• Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, a national unknown before McCain chose her for the ticket 10 days ago, draws a strong reaction from voters on both sides. Now, 29% say she makes them more likely to vote for McCain, 21% less likely.

Obama’s choice of Delaware Sen. Joe Biden as running mate made 14% more likely to vote for the Democrat, 7% less likely.

• McCain’s acceptance speech Thursday received lower ratings than the one Obama gave a week earlier: 15% called McCain’s speech “excellent” compared with 35% for Obama.

McCain still has one giant hurdle to jump, however. 63% of voters say they are concerned McCain will pursue policies same as President Bush. Bush’s approval rating is 33%.

While McCain is benefiting from a Convention bounce, it is worthy to mention in a year where Democrats have everything going for them, the Presidential candidate still significantly underperforms the generic Democrat. The generic Democrat beats the generic Republican by 10 to 15 points. Plus, despite the worries from a majority of voters that McCain will be just like Bush, Obama is still struggling. Then again, this is not Europe. Americans vote for the person, not the Party.

It will be interesting to see how long this bump last. It is called a bump for a reason–it is just that, a parabolic bump. If McCain still leads by next week, I say there will be reason for Obama supporters to worry.

McCain now leads the RCP Average for the first time since April.

Gibson to Interview Palin

Sarah Palin will sit down with ABC’s Charles Gibson later this week for her first interview after she was named as the Republican Vice Presidential candidate.

On Sunday, Joe Biden challenged Palin to sit down for an interview.

“”She’s a smart, tough politician,” Biden told Tom Brokaw in a “Meet the Press” interview live from Wilmington, Del. “So I think she’s going to be formidable. Eventually, she’s going to have to sit in front of you like I’m doing and have done. Eventually, she’s going to have to answer questions and not be sequestered. Eventually, she’s going to have to answer on the record.”

The McCain camp has been under pressure from the media to allow Palin to sit for an interview. Later this week she will return to Alaska for the interview before campaigning on her own.

Daily Rasmussen – September 7, 2008

McCain is making inroads in the Rasmussen tracking poll, now even with Barack Obama. At the peak of Obama’s convention bounce, he was six points ahead of McCain.

Without Leaners

Barack Obama: 46%
John McCain: 46% (+1)

With Leaners

Barack Obama: 48% (-1)
John McCain: 48% (+2)

Favorable/Unfavorable (NET)

Barack Obama: 56%/43% (+13)
John McCain: 58%/40% (+18)

At the peak of Obama’s convention bounce, he had a net favorable rating of 19 points.

Forty-two percent (42%) of voters say that economic issues are most important this year and Obama holds a 34-point advantage among these voters.

Twenty-four percent (24%) of voters say the national security issues are most important. Among these voters its McCain by 39.

The Republican hopeful also leads by wide margins among those who consider fiscal issues or cultural issues most important. Obama leads among those primarily interested in domestic programs such as Social Security and health care.

The enthusiasm gap is also closing. Before the Republican convention, 54% of Republican were voting for McCain because they were enthusiastic, now that number is 65%. Still, Obama holds the advantage in enthusiasm. 77% of voters are voting for Obama because they are enthusiastic.

The poll includes all three post-Palin speech days and two post-McCain speech days. Monday will be the first poll taken entirely after the Republican convention.

Daily Rasmussen – September 5, 2008

The bounce begins for John McCain as Sarah Palin becomes more popular than either presidential candidates.

Without Leaners

Barack Obama: 46% (-1)
John McCain: 45% (+2)

With Leaners

Barack Obama: 48% (-2)
John McCain: 46% (+1)

Favorable/Unfavorable (NET)

Barack Obama: 57%/42% (+15)
John McCain: 57%/41% (+16)
Sarah Palin: 58%/37% (+21)

40% have a Very Favorable opinion of Palin, compared to 37% who have a Very Favorable opinion of Obama and 27% who says the same of McCain.

Interviews include one day of post-Palin speech and two days of pre-Palin speech.

Daily Rasmussen – September 4, 2008

The race remains steady today, three days into the Republican Convention.

Without Leaners

Barack Obama: 47% (-1)
John McCain: 43%

With Leaners

Barack Obama: 50%
John McCain: 45%

Favorable/Unfavorable (NET)

Barack Obama: 57%/41% (+16)
John McCain: 56%/43% (+13)

Virtually all of the results are based on interviews taken before Palin’s convention speech.

51% believe the media is trying to hurt Palin with their coverage, while only 5% believe they are trying to help. 35% believe the media is providing unbiased coverage. Among Unaffliated voters, 49% think the media is trying to hurt Palin.

On the experience question, 49% say Obama has the experience to be President, while 39% believe Palin has the experience to be President. Among unaffliated voters, 42% give Obama the edge on experiece while 37% give Palin the edge. This poll was taken before Palin’s convention speech.

Daily Rasmussen – September 2, 2008

Today’s Rasmussen numbers show Barack Obama higrowings lead from yesterday, now corssing the 50% mark when leaners are included.

Without Leaners

Barack Obama: 48% (+1)
John McCain: 43% (-1)

With Leaners

Barack Obama: 51% (+2)
John McCain: 45% (-1)

Favorable/Unfavorable (NET)

Barack Obama: 58%/41% (+17)
John McCain: 56%/43% (+13)
Sarah Palin: 52%/36% (+18)

An ominous sign for McCain? It is unclear if this is part of a convention bounce or if voters moving towards Obama in light of McCain’s VP choice. While voters still have a favorable view of Palin comparable to the presidential candidates, the partisan gap widens–more Democrats view her less favorably and more Republicans view her very favorably. Given that there has been a lack of Obama’s convention speech coverage and an ever increasing level of negative stories about Palin, it may be safe to infer that McCain’s and Obama’s movement is largely due, though not entirely, to Sarah Palin.

McCain Raises $47 Million in August

Since the announcement of Sarah Palin as the Republican Vice Presidential candidate, the McCain campaign has pulled in $10 million bringing their total for the month to $47 million.

The numbers are not final and campaign spokesman Brian Rogers says they are still counting.

Because McCain will accept $87 million in public funds, any money raised after today cannot be spent. The McCain campaign says any excess money will be steered to state committees.

The McCain campaign plans on using Palin as fundraiser in the coming months given her success.

This is by far the most the McCain campaign has raised in a month, but it is still less than Obama’s record of $55 million.