A PPP poll, taken after Todd Akin’s infamous comment about rape, puts him in a virtual tie with Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill in the Missouri Senate race. According to that poll, Akin leads McCaskill by 44-43. That’s the same margin by which he led the Senator in PPP’s most recent previous poll, which found Akin ahead by 45-44.
Akin can cite this poll as a reason to remain in the race. After all, it purports to show that his offensive comment hasn’t changed the race at all.
Unfortunately, that finding is absurd. Moreover, it comes from a flawed poll. As Ed Morrissey points out, PPP significantly oversampled Republicans. Republicans made up 39 percent of those surveyed; Democrats were only 30 percent. Ed notes that even in the 2010 election, exit polls showed the GOP with only a 37-34 percent advantage.
PPP is a Democratic polling company that partners with the leftist outfit The Daily Kos. Typically, it’s polls do not significantly oversample Republicans. For example, in its previous poll, the one showing the race at 45-44 in favor of Akin, Democrats outnumbered Republicans. I suspect that the latest PPP poll oversampled Republicans for the purpose of providing encouragement to Akin to stay in the race.
The Democrats have already done what they can to boost Akin. During the primary, they reportedly spent more than $1 million in advertising designed to help Akin defeat his two more electable rivals.
As I said yesterday, you have to hand it to the Dems; they continue to demonstrate considerably more savvy in the Senate candidate selection process than the Republicans do.