Colin Powell Made His Decision. Will he Help Others Make Theirs?

powellSo, Colin Powell has made his long awaited decision on who he will vote for in the Presidential election.  And he gave his reasons why.  He did not bad talk either of the candidates, but he did clearly state the reason why he is voting for the one he is.

While he praised John McCain for his past actions, and he believes that either one of the candidates would make a good President, he feels that at this point in time, Barack Obama would be the one best able to lead.  One of the reasons he stated was that Obama was inclusive and McCain exclusive.  He also stated that McCain’s choice of Sarah Palin as vice president leaves questions about his decision making ability.  But will Colin Powell’s endorsement have an effect on the election.

Before he made his decision public, Rasmussen Reports took a survey covering just this question. The survey showed that Powell’s announcement would make a difference to only 12% of the voters, but where does that 12% come from.  And in a relatively close election, 12% is not a small number.

First of all, the poll showed that Colin Powell still has a favorable rating with the American voters. Over all, 80% give him a somewhat or very favorable rating.  With men, it is 82% and with women, it is 79%.  With Republicans it is 85%. Democrats 77% and with independent and third party voters it is 81%.

When they asked if Powell’s endorsement of one of the candidates would make a difference, 12% said it was at least somewhat or very likely that it would. There was very little difference between the men and the women with 13% of the men and 12% of the women saying the same. With Republicans, it is 11%, with Democrats it is 15% and with independents and third party voters it is 10%.  According to Rasmussen Reports, 12% of the voters are persuadable.  That means that they are leaning towards voting for one of the candidates, but could switch. Exactly the same percentage who said Powell could make a difference. Coincidence? Maybe, maybe not.

So, conceivably, 11% of the Republicans and 10% of the independent and third party voters could vote for Obama because of Powell’s endorsement.  A big difference in the end results? Definitely.

The effects of Powell’s endorsement should begin to be felt in the state by state polls starting on Tuesday.  Of course, other things could happen between now and then and the way this election is going, nothing would be a surprise.

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