The burden of proof is on President Bush’s shoulders if he wants to capture the undecided vote. And according to the latest tracking poll by Zogby International, it is quite a heavy burden:
Pollster John Zogby: “The two candidates go into the third and final debate tied. TIED!!! There is no major sub-group movement to report, but the undecided voters give us the real key to what is happening behind the scenes. Today’s three-day track reveals that only 11% of the undecided voters feel that President Bush deserves to be re-elected. That is the lowest figure yet. Two in five — 40%– feel it is time for someone new and 49% are undecided about his future.
In the first two debates, John Kerry has more than proved himself a reasonable alternative, and I fully expect him to do well again tonight. For Bush to create any sort of movement in the polls in his favor, he’s going to have to erase some of his negatives with undecided voters. After four years in office, I’m not sure he can.
Of course, the real story behind the polls is how they are underestimating voter turnout nationwide. While both sides have launched aggressive voter registration campaigns, new Democratic registrations have far outstripped GOP efforts in nearly all the “battleground” states. If D’s can turn out these new registrants, the vote will clearly break in Kerry’s favor.