Presidential Tracking Poll: Bush-Kerry
Updated Daily by Noon Eastern
Not Sure 3.7%
Sunday October 03, 2004--The latest Rasmussen Reports Presidential Tracking Poll shows President George W. Bush with 49% of the vote and Senator John Kerry with 45%.
These results are based upon a survey of 3,000 Likely Voters conducted Thursday night, Friday night, and Saturday afternoon. As a result, just over two-thirds of the interviews were conducted following Thursday night's Presidential Debate.
Interviews conducted on Friday and Saturday show Kerry with a one-point bounce so far since the debate. However, in post-debate interviews, Bush still leads 49% to 46%.
The debates did little to change voter perceptions of the candidates' political ideology. However, following the debate, there was an increase in the number who say finishing the mission in Iraq is more important than getting troops home as soon as possible.
Six percent (6%)% of voters say they changed their minds following the debate. This includes 3% who are now voting for Kerry, 2% for Bush, and 1% who are now undecided.
A separate survey found Republican challenger John Thune with a narrow lead over Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle in South Dakota.
Newsweak's poll was just an example of the MSM carrying water for the Democrats. Again.
I'll be the first to say PHEW!
W still needs to kick ass in the next two...............................then roll out OBL and the landslide is a lock...................................................................
THE SKY IS FALLING!!!
That's a damned good point which had not occurred to me.
Monday's poll will be the first with all responses being post debate. In order to smooth out fluctuations Razzy samples over three days.
Our "friends" at Pravda West(aka L.A. Times) is spinning the debates as a win for Kerry.
THE TIMES POLL
Viewers Give Round 1 to Kerry
Most who watched Thursday's debate say it added to the Democratic candidate's luster, but not at the expense of Bush's standing.
By Ronald Brownstein and Kathleen Hennessey
Times Staff Writers
October 3, 2004
WASHINGTON ? Sen. John F. Kerry improved his image with voters who watched his debate with President Bush last week, but didn't significantly shift their choice in the presidential race, a Times poll of debate viewers has found.
Although the debate did not diminish impressions of Bush on most questions, it did restore some of the luster Kerry had lost amid relentless Republican pounding since his party's convention in July, the poll found.
The key question will be whether those gains will help Kerry peel away voters from Bush in the days ahead.
Of those who watched Thursday's debate, more than three times as many called Kerry the winner as picked Bush, the poll found. The Democratic nominee also made modest gains with viewers on questions relating to national security and leadership. And the portion of debate viewers with favorable perceptions of Kerry increased from 52% before to 57% after.
Kerry's most dramatic advance in the survey came in convincing more voters that he had a thorough agenda for the next four years. Asked which candidate had the more detailed plan for the policies he would pursue if elected, viewers gave Bush a 9-percentage-point edge before the encounter; afterward, they preferred Kerry by 4 points.
"I thought [Kerry] did remarkably well within that format," said Joanne Sullivan, a registered Republican from Bremen, Maine. "He was very specific and went from Point A to Point B so much better than the platitudes that emerged from George Bush's side."
These survey results reflect attitudes only among registered voters who watched the debate. Their views are more apt to change than the views among voters overall, many of whom did not watch the debate.
The poll, conducted Thursday night and Friday, surveyed 1,368 registered voters who participated in a Times survey last week and agreed to be contacted after the Sept. 30 debate. Among the group, 725 voters said they had watched the debate; it is their responses the poll reports. The poll, supervised by polling director Susan Pinkus, has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.
The voters who watched the debate were slightly more favorable to Kerry than the overall electorate even before the encounter began, the poll showed.
For instance, in last week's Times poll, Kerry trailed Bush among all registered voters by 49% to 45%. But the voters who watched the matchup preferred Kerry by 48% to 47% for Bush before the debate. After the debate, viewers divided nearly the same way, with 49% favoring Kerry, 47% Bush.
That tracks with other post-debate polls showing improvements in Kerry's image but generally little immediate change in the race. The exception is a Newsweek poll conducted Thursday night through Saturday that showed Kerry leading Bush 49% to 46% in a two-way race among registered voters, with a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.
Lorri Guy, a secretary from Memphis, Tenn., who watched the debate, may exemplify the extent, and limits, of Kerry's gains in the Times poll.
After the debate, she's still undecided. She voted for Bush in 2000 and continues to admire what she sees as his tenacity and firm response to terrorism. "He says what he's going to do and stands behind it," she said.
But now Guy is more open to the Massachusetts senator.
"I'm not quite sure yet where Kerry's going, but I got a better impression of him than I had," she said. "He seemed a little more precise; he seemed like he had more of a plan."
Guy is waiting to hear more from the candidates on the economy before deciding.
As for the candidates' performances, viewers gave Kerry the edge on almost all questions. Before the debate, more of those who watched said they expected Bush to win than Kerry. But by 54% to 15%, viewers said they believed Kerry did a better job; independents who watched the debate preferred Kerry to Bush by more than 5 to 1.
Before the debate, those who ended up watching it were divided evenly on whether they expected Bush or Kerry to appear more knowledgeable. But, by 42% to 29%, viewers said they believed Kerry had seemed more knowledgeable.
By just over 2 to 1, viewers said Kerry was more effective at delivering his message. By more than 3 to 1, viewers said Kerry was more effective at responding under pressure. Viewers split on whether Kerry or Bush had seemed "most presidential," with Kerry leading by a statistically insignificant 40% to 38%.
Among the striking findings was the verdict on which candidate had displayed the strongest personality and character. Before the debate, by more than 2 to 1, the viewers had expected Bush to make the best impression. Afterward, they favored Kerry over Bush by 40% to 33% on that question.
Overall, Kerry's performance had many Democrats breathing sighs of relief, and even some Bush supporters tipping their hats.
John Harvey, a union carpenter from Douglasville, Ga., was worried that "Kerry wouldn't know what he was talking about" on the war and foreign policy.
But after watching, he said, "I think Kerry just got his point over better. When they were showing the split screen, every time Kerry said anything critical ? Bush's lip would quiver like a little kid."
Added Ivan Searcy, a self-employed Democrat from Redondo Beach: "I had become somewhat disappointed in [Kerry] as a candidate. Now I feel happier with his position after the debate. He was really able to stand right there with Bush."
Small-business owner Jan Kendall is a Bush supporter from Slidell, La. The debate didn't cause her to question her commitment to the president. But she thought Bush "looked tired and haggard," while Kerry "did a good job in terms of being a little more likable."
Viewers were more likely to say Kerry attacked his opponent than Bush did Kerry ? though half felt that neither attacked more than the other. Likewise, although more voters said the president had made a mistake during the debate than said Kerry did, about half thought that neither had erred.
These reviews generated a consistent pattern on broader questions about the two men. Attitudes toward Bush generally didn't deteriorate. But assessments of Kerry did improve.
Among those who watched, Bush's approval rating after the debate was unchanged from before, with 49% approving and 50% disapproving. Bush's favorability rating among debate viewers improved slightly (though within the survey's margin of error). Before the debate, 51% of the watchers viewed Bush favorably and 49% viewed him unfavorably; afterward, the numbers were 52% and 47%.
Kerry made bigger gains among viewers. On the most basic measure, the share of viewers with a favorable impression of him rose from 52% before the debate to 57% after; the share with an unfavorable impression dropped from 46% to 41%.
Kerry gained ground on every issue and personal characteristic that the survey measured.
Before the debate, viewers gave Bush a 7-percentage-point advantage when asked which man would provide strong leadership; after the debate Bush's advantage was 2 points.
Viewers gave Bush a 4-percentage-point advantage before the debate when asked which man had the honesty and integrity to serve as president; afterward, viewers gave Kerry a 1-percentage-point edge.
Likewise, before the debate, viewers gave Bush a 2-percentage-point advantage when asked who would be a stronger commander in chief; afterward they split evenly.
Attitudes on Iraq showed the same modest movement in Kerry's favor. Before the debate, viewers preferred Bush over Kerry by 1 percentage point when asked which man was more likely to develop a plan for success in Iraq; afterward, they preferred Kerry by 3 points.
Bush retained a big lead among debate watchers on handling terrorism, but his advantage there was trimmed from 14 to 10 percentage points. Kerry's edge on handling the economy widened from 6 percentage points beforehand to 13 after.
Among those who watched, Bush's position eroded on another key question. Before the debate, 43% of viewers agreed that "the country is better off" because of his policies, whereas 53% said the nation needed to "move in a new direction."
After the debate, the percentage of viewers who wanted to continue in Bush's direction dropped to 39%, and the share preferring a new direction increased to 57%. Yet about an eighth of the debate watchers who wanted a new direction said they were voting for Bush nonetheless ? a finding that underscored the doubts Kerry must still overcome.
Times Poll data management supervisor Claudia Vaughn contributed to this report.
Copyright 2004 Los Angeles Times
don't count on it, kerry is a great debater, it's prob. the only thing he's good at