Third presidential debate leaves candidates where they were

The third and final debate between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney occurred on Monday, October 22. Today, Rasmussen released the results of its latest three-day poll of the race. It was taken during the three days following the debate.

According to the poll, Romney leads Obama by 3 points, 50-47. This result reflects essentially no change from the poll Rasmussen reported on the day of the debate. Romney led that one by 49-47. Thus, the Rasmussen results suggest, and we expected, that the debate did not alter the race.

The same picture emerges from Gallup’s polling. Gallup uses seven-day rolling averages, so its results still encompasses pre-debate data.

Today’s Gallup result has Romney up by 5 points, 51-46. Its last poll that did not include post-debate results had Romney ahead by that same count.

Obama, as we know, came after Romney pretty hard in the second and third debates. It did him no good. What, other than pulling a late October or early November suprise, can Obama do at this point to move the needle? I can’t think of anything.

In my next post I’ll consider whether Obama can win without moving the popular vote needle.

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