by Max Brantley
Even Republican-friendly Larry Sabato, political quotomatic, says the latest Gallup poll with a 7-point Romney lead is an outlier.
Ezra Klein digs into it a little bit. It might be that in the popular vote Romney REALLY IS ahead 7 points among likely voters. That doesn't mean an electoral college win, however. You know it. It's on account of a crazy huge margin in the South, where none dare speak the name of race in evaluating the difference. Unfortunately, the wash-off down the ballot is going to put that crowd in charge, with all the baggage that entails. Writes Klein:
I think it’s fair to say that the election is, for the moment, close.
But not according to Gallup. Their seven-day tracking poll shows Romney up by seven points — yes, seven — with likely voters. But he’s only up by one point with registered voters.
It gets weirder: Dig into the poll, and you’ll find that in the most recent internals they’ve put on their Web site — which track from 10/9-10/15 — Obama is winning the West (+6), the East (+4), and the Midwest (+4). The only region he’s losing is the South. But he’s losing the South, among likely voters, by 22 points. That’s enough, in Gallup’s poll, for him to be behind in the national vote. But it’s hard to see how that puts him behind in the electoral college.
UPDATE: Nate Silver Twitter comment at 10:30 a.m.
National polls published in past 24 hours: Obama +3.2, Obama +3, Obama +3, Obama +1, Obama +0.6, Obama +0.5, TIE, Romney +7.