Presidential race polling may be shifting

The New York Times smear appears to have been a huge boost for McCain, and Obama is beginning to plateau, if not slip a bit.  Nobody but Rasmussen has picked this up yet (he has new numbers at 10 Central each day).  This is a big story,  I think.

The psychology of Democrats’ race has been that Obama would cruise over McCain, and McCain beats Hillary, so the super-delegates will not override Obama , the choice of primary voters. But now McCain leads Obama and Hillary by similar amounts (3%) and she has picked up a bit this week, while Obama has dropped a bit in the national head to head races against McCain. 

Rasmussen numbers are a 4 day sample, so the last two nights must be overwhelming for McCain -- 10% or greater leads, to reverse a 4% deficit versus Obama on Thursday (42-46, then 44-44 Friday, and 46-43 today).  Hillary can now make the case that only she can be beat McCain in the key states of Pennsylvania, Ohio and Florida. Right now, she runs better than Obama against McCain in all  three. She may have an ounce of life left if she wins both contests on March 4. Still a long  shot, and the mainstream media is totally clueless about this new trend. 

The Times smear piece, roundly condemned by its own readers, appears to have lit a fire under conservatives: McCain is up sharply, Obama is down  a little. Thanks to Pinch Sulzberger and Bill Keller, the GOP has come to life. Who ever said the left was smart?

By the way, Rasmussen state polls are older than national surveys in head to head November matchups. They will clearly turn if national numbers turn as they have. Surveys out in last two days show McCain even with Obama in Oregon (!) and up on him by 5 in Virginia, and slightly ahead or slightly behind in Ohio and Pennsylvania. (1-3 points in each case). 

The Obama-is-a-lefty story is beginning to surface . That will not help him in November if he is nominee (still likely).

Also worth noting is that the Obama Clinton race has also tightened nationally.  Obama led 47-40 two days ago, now by only  44-43.  This shift is probably due to Michelle Obama's comments on  pride in America, which went over  poorly  most everywhere.