I believe John McCain will pull off an upset victory in the general election next Tuesday, just as he revived what all the "experts" had said was a dead campaign and went on to win the primaries which earned him his party's nomination. There are five reasons for my optimism for the McCain-Palin ticket's chances.First, the media isn't really fooling many with their anti-McCain bias. Late in July a Rasmussen poll found that:
49% of voters believe most reporters will try to help the Democrat with their coverage, up from 44% a month ago.
Just 14% believe most reporters will try to help McCain win, little changed from 13% a month ago. Just one voter in four (24%) believes that most reporters will try to offer unbiased coverage.
Americans don't like it when the media keeps trying to deceive them. Many of them take it as an insult to their intelligence. All they ask of the media is to present useful information about both candidates to them in a balanced and impartial manner so that they can make their own decisions. When someone tries to decide for them, as the media has done, they get very angry with the media, and there is a spillover effect which harms Obama's campaign.
Also, most polls are not presenting a true snapshot of the voting intentions of the electorate. They oversample Democrats, which exaggerates Obama's numbers and underestimates McCain's. The degree of oversampling can range from just a few percentage points to as many as fifteen. So the poll results will vary. Adjust accordingly. You may find that in that poll which shows Obama in the lead, McCain could actually be out front.
Another reason I think McCain should win is Obama campaign hubris. Many Obama supporters have been talking like their guy has already won this thing, and recent news of meetings by the Obama transition team, plans for a big Obama victory celebration and such have done little to dispel the notion that they believe it's all over but for the coronation. Americans don't react favorably to such arrogance, and it could have a significant boomerang effect on the Obama campaign. Even Obama's considerable cash advantage over McCain could work against him in the minds of some voters if they perceive that he's trying to buy the election.
In addition, there are Obama's friends. His relationships with the likes of Bill Ayers, Rev. Jeremiah Wright, Fr. Michael Phleger, Tony Rezko, Rashid Khalidi and others have been catalogued in "The Real Barack Obama" - a series of twelve videos from Fox News' Hannity's America program. Most voters don't have an encyclopedic knowledge of Obama associations. But only the seeds of doubt need be present in their minds to - at the very least - question the judgment that candidate Obama's track record has shown. For undecided voters who must choose between the two candidates, that seed of doubt is all that many will need to persuade them that John McCain is the choice with much less risk packed up in his baggage.
Finally, the United States is still a center-right nation. A series of thirteen Battleground polls conducted by a respected and bipartisan partnership confirms that those who consider themselves to be very conservative and somewhat conservative are in the majority. In all thirteen of these polls, the percentage of this majority has been at a consistent 59% to 60%. Liberals, by contrast, have never amounted to more than 38% in the same thirteen polls, which were conducted from June of 2002 to August of this year.
The center-right majority has been rejecting candidates they perceive as liberal for forty years. That's why Hubert Humphrey, George McGovern, Walter Mondale, Michael Dukakis and John Kerry failed to win the presidency. Jimmy Carter, who was perceived to be centrist at the time, managed to win one term in 1976 and Bill Clinton won two terms in the 1990s. Al Gore, who was also perceived to be centrist at the time, almost pulled it off in 2000.
The big question is how will they perceive Barack Obama? He has certainly done everything he could do to cast himself in the mold of a moderate, including switching positions on most issues. If enough of the center-right majority aren't fooled by the moderate Obama veneer, they will vote against him. Recent events have put the spotlight on Obama's rather leftist ideas on the redistribution of wealth, which a majority of undecided voters frown upon.
In the end, most voters are a risk-averse lot. They will go into the voting booth and, with so many nagging doubts about Barack Obama in their minds, vote for John McCain, a man they're sure will, like his campaign slogan says, put the country first.