McCain’s Palin Bump

08Sep08

The GOP convention was the launch pad that the McCain campaign had hoped for, fueled by the inclusion of Sarah Palin. A new USA/Today poll, conducted by Gallup, indicates a bump of about 11%.

The Republican National Convention has given John McCain and his party a significant boost, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll taken over the weekend shows, as running mate Sarah Palin helps close an “enthusiasm gap” that has dogged the GOP all year.

McCain leads Democrat Barack Obama by 50%-46% among registered voters, the Republican’s biggest advantage since January and a turnaround from the USA TODAY poll taken just before the convention opened in St. Paul. Then, he lagged by 7 percentage points.

The news gets even more dramatic, however.

In the new poll, taken Friday through Sunday, McCain leads Obama by 54%-44% among those seen as most likely to vote.

Republicans are fired up in a way that seemed impossible before Sarah.

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%.

What do folks say about Sarah?

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.

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