The top line is Barack Obama 49 vs. Mitt Romney 49.
Looks close, right?
But then, you look at the crosstabs and see this.
Registered voters were asked questions about their likelihood of voting, past voting behavior, and interest in the campaign; based on answers to those questions, 693 respondents were classified as likely voters. Respondents who reported that they had already cast an absentee ballot or voted early were automatically classified as likely voters. Among those likely voters, 41% described themselves as Democrats, 29% described themselves as Independents, and 30% described themselves as Republicans.
When Hope and Change mania was running wild, brother — it was D+8. In 2010, when the GOP ran all over the Democrats, it was dead even. This poll is D+11.
Putting it another way, in 2008, the exit polls showed 39D/31R/29I. In 2010, when the GOP had such an incredible year, it was 36D/36R/28I. This poll assumes 41D/30R/29I. So, this poll is estimating that Republican turnout will drop BELOW McCain’s horrific lows, while Democrat turnout as a percentage of the electorate will be way up from 2008 — and Romney is winning Independents by such an enormous margin that they’re still even.
PS: Gallup pegs the electorate at R+1 and Rasmussen puts it at R+2.6