McCain Camp: Things Are Getting Tight

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On a brief jump flight from Philadelphia to Scranton, McCain adviser Charlie Black and Kansas Sen. Sam Brownback came back to talk up the campaign’s conviction that the glass if half full. “Four years ago at this point, George W. Bush was down five points in Iowa,” Brownback said. “Today John McCain is down one point in Iowa.”

He was citing an unreleased internal McCain campaign poll of the state, which was completed last Thursday, said Black. (The campaign stopped doing its own polling after Thursday, he added, because television time through the election all had to be purchased by Friday.) However, public polls in Iowa suggest that McCain is still in a big hole. Last week, the Des Moines Register poll, which has a good record of prediction in that state, put McCain’s deficit at 17 points, with Barack Obama garnering 54 percent of the support.

“McCain is in a good position to win every red state,” Black said. “Plus he is probably going to win Pennsylvania and Iowa.” Polls have narrowed sharply in Pennsylvania in recent weeks, though Obama still has a sizable lead of 7 points in the Real Clear Politics average. Black said he had seen a poll recently that showed McCain tied in the Philadelphia suburbs, a crucial swing region of the state.

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