Just as the presidential race is deadlocked in the campaign’s final days, the candidates are also running about even when it comes to the ground game. Voters nationally, as well those in the closely contested battleground states, report being contacted at about the same rates by each of the campaigns. And with a fifth of likely voters reporting already having cast their ballots, neither Barack Obama nor Mitt Romney has a clear advantage among early voters. This is in sharp contrast to early voting at this point four years ago, which favored Obama by a wide margin.
This is not quite the same as the Gallup results mentioned earlier; a smaller sample size means the 50/43 Romney lead is ‘not statistically significant.’ At the same time, Pew is finding that about the same percentage of voters have voted already (19%)… but in 2008 Obama beat McCain in early voting 53/34. This has implications, and the most important one is: there continues to be pretty much no outside evidence whatsoever to back various state pollster claims that Obama is doing as well as he did in 2008, and quite a bit of evidence to demonstrate that he’s doing a bit to a lot worse.
And yes, getting tied in early voting – let alone losing – qualifies as a lot worse.