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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Barack's Busted Berlin Bounce

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Tuesday shows that Barack Obama’s Berlin bounce is gone.

Following up on the news yesterday that in the USA TODAY/Gallup Poll John McCain took a 4 percent lead over Barack Obama among likely voters, we see today that Rasmussen is showing the Berlin Bounce is gone and the race is tight as ever, with Obama's two point lead (One point when leaners are added) being within the margin of error.

Obama now attracts 44% of the vote while John McCain earns 42%. When "leaners" are included, it’s Obama 47% and McCain 46%.

Heading over to the results from Gallup, we also see that Obama's overseas trip might have actually given Republicans more energy and enthusiasm for John McCain, despite the overwhelming coverage that Obama received.

Could John McCain benefit from Barack Obama's much-publicized foreign trip? Several observations from the just-completed USA Today/Gallup poll suggest that this is a possibility.

While interest in Obama seems to have peaked months ago and the expected bounce after Hillary Clinton suspended her campaign never materialized and now the expected bounce from Obamas trip hasn't materialized for more than three days and is now gone added to the fact that Republicans are just becoming more energized and showing more excitement for John McCain, all suggest that the race that 2 years ago the Democrats considered a slam dunk, is now so tight they cannot even be assured they will win.

Interestingly enough, the Center for Media and Public Affairs at George Mason University found in their research that while Barack Obama did receive more coverage, the coverage regarding him was more negative than John McCain received.

During the evening news, the majority of statements from reporters and anchors on all three networks are neutral, the center found. And when network news people ventured opinions in recent weeks, 28% of the statements were positive for Obama and 72% negative.

Network reporting also tilted against McCain, but far less dramatically, with 43% of the statements positive and 57% negative, according to the Washington-based media center.

Conservatives have been snarling about the grotesque disparity revealed by another study, the online Tyndall Report, which showed Obama receiving more than twice as much network air time as McCain in the last month and a half. Obama got 166 minutes of coverage in the seven weeks after the end of the primary season, compared with 67 minutes for McCain, according to longtime network-news observer Andrew Tyndall.

Why the disconnect between what Americans are perceiving and what the Center for Media and Public Affairs is reporting?