Tuesday, January 27, 2004

Leaked Exit Polls: A fight for 1st and 3rd

According to Kos' sources at the LA Times and ABC News, Kerry is down one to in the Times 1pm results (33 to 34) and up 6 in ABC's (37 31). That's close, within the margin of error I assume. n both these polls, both Clark and Edwards are hovering around 12 percent.

The National Review's The Corner has Kerry 36, Dean 31, Edwards 12 and Clark 12. Kos thinks this source is "Probably the ABC News tracking poll with Kerry's number rounded down."

So, what to make of all this? First, the media can't help but spill the beans on an exciting multi-race race. These two battles are important because Dean will be relabeled the front runner if Kerry loses, I suspect (since Kerry has no money for down the road if he loses to Dean). And the winner of 3rd place will go on to win South Carolina, although Edwards should have an edge there regardless, since he was born there and visited there this week (oh and he has a lead there currently).

What's best for Clark? A "strong third" --15 points or so-- and a Dean win. He would rather have Dean to beat up on than Kerry, who is too similar to him. What's best for the others is pretty damn obvious so I won't waste your time.

Also keep in mind that this is the 1PM tracking poll. Everything could change by 8PM when networks say what is going on. We could have solid 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 all locked in. Or Dean/Kerry's numbers could melt.

The Financial Times says that Clark has a new way to get at Kerry, finally: elitism from a first in his class Rhodes Scholar guy. "I did not go to Yale. My parents could not afford to send me there," General Clark said, reminding people that his father died just before he was four years old and left the family with $424" Who does that sound like the 1st and 2nd place guys (and President Bush...scary ain't it?)

"For so long we had been so focused on Dean, Dean, Dean," a campaign staffer said. "If we come anywhere in the top three we will declare victory," a Clark aide said, adding that the campaign's main ambition now was to pick up one or more of the seven states that vote on February 3. "We are looking good in Oklahoma." Please, let's not hang our hat solely on Oklahoma. Let's aim to sweep the 2/3 states.

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