Here is additional information strongly suggesting that Mitt Romney has a real shot at winning. Like the CNN poll cited in my post this morning, this one -- a United Technologies/National Journal Congressional Connection Poll -- is based on a likely voter screen. It shows the race tied with each candidate drawing 47% of the votes:
The survey was conducted Sept. 27-30 and has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.7 percentage points.
Romney led in the poll among independents, 49 percent to 41 percent, with both candidates winning more than 90 percent support from their respective parties. The survey had Obama winning 81 percent of the nonwhite vote and Romney carrying 55 percent of white voters.
In estimating the turnout on Nov. 6, the poll projects an electorate that is 74 percent white, 11 percent African-American, and 8 percent Latino. The likely-voter party splits are 36 percent Democratic, 29 percent Republican, and 30 percent independent.
The estimates are similar to the 2008 turnout, when, according to CNN exit polling, 74 percent of voters were white, 13 percent black, and 9 percent Latino, with Democratic turnout at 39 percent, Republicans at 32 percent, and independents at 29 percent.
The poll also asked voters which party they would prefer to control the Congress. Democrats were favored there. A slim plurality of likely voters said they preferred that Democrats win enough seats to control the House and keep hold of the Senate, a positive sign for the party five weeks out from the election.
In assessing the poll, you should take note of the presumed ethnic and partisan turnout. It is weighted on the presumption that the partisan divide will be almost identical to what it was in 2008 and that the same will be true for the ethnic divide. In my judgment, neither is likely. The electorate is apt to be closer to that of 2010. In particular, the partisan weighting makes no sense. The year 2008 was an outlier in that particular, and in 2010 there was no partisan divide.
If you were to readjust this poll by reducing slightly the black turnout and by a bit more the Hispanic turnout and if you were to assume a much closer partisan divide of the sort shown by, say, Rasmussen, Romney would be ahead by a comfortable margin -- which is what I take to be the case.
Keep this in mind -- for it may be the last snapshot you get of the results of this campaign prior to all hell breaking loose. David Axelrod and those who have run Barack Obama's campaigns have a way of unleashing damaging revelations about his opponents at crucial moments in the campaign. Obama himself has, however, never been on the receiving end. But, in a few minutes, if the Drudgereport can be trusted, Sean Hannity on Fox will play a tape of Barack Obama delivering, in the presence of the Reverend Jeremiah Wright, a racial tirade well worthy of that notorious bigot. We are, for the first time, about to meet the real Barack Obama.