A new Quinnipiac University poll shows Barack Obama holding a 51%-45 lead over Mitt Romney.
As opposed to Q's Virginia sample, these sampling numbers look pretty realistic (39% Democratic, 33% Republican, 29% Independent), so I think the president actually is in pretty good shape.
The wild card, though -- Romney leads independents, 50%-44%. They made up 32% of the sample, but only 29% of the voting electorate in 2008.
So it seems Romney needs some unusually strong indie turnout to turn Wisconsin red.
a. Overall, Obama's lead has grown to 6% from 2% last month.
His approval rating is at 51%/46%, which should be good enough in a blue state. However, he's at -10% among indies.
b. The consolidation of the bases is just amazing. Romney only wins 1% of Democrats, and Obama only wins 3% of Republicans. Is Wisconsin, post-recall election and bitter feud, the most polarized state in the country? Maybe.
c. Romney wins white Catholics, 56%-42%. That's a notable number in Wisconsin.
d. Obama wins every income group, except the two tie with $100K+ voters.
e. Once again, Romney just crushes Obama with indies on favorable rating. Mitt is at +14% with indies and Obama is at -6% with indies.
f. Indies pick Romney over Obama on the economy (+11%), health care (+2%), Medicare (+1%), taxes (+6%).
Indies pick Obama over Romney on national security (+1%), women's issues (+18%), and handling an international crisis (+4%).
OVERALL: Romney is doing well with indies, sure, but it doesn't matter as much in Wisconsin as in Virginia or Colorado, which produced polls today showing more promising fundamentals for Romney than reported.
In Wisconsin, Romney isn't doing nearly well enough with Democrats, and he needs a bigger lead with indies (currently +6%) to win.
[Photo: White House/Pete Souza]