Thursday, March 20, 2008

The power of television

There was a period of about a couple weeks around the end of Feburary and the start of March where Bev Perdue was running tv ads and Richard Moore wasn't. Perdue's lead ballooned to 27 points in the poll we took during that period.

Then Moore went back on the air with a much better message than he had shown in his earlier tv and cut the lead all the way down to 10 points.

My guess is that Perdue wasn't really up by 27- with the 4 point MOE on the poll it was likely closer to 23. Nevertheless the large shifts in the race based on who's been on the air and what they've been saying has been dramatic.

Our latest poll showed that in the last week 63% of likely voters remembered seeing ads for Perdue and 57% remembered seeing ads for Moore. That's exposure you just can't get going and speaking to one voter at a time.

That got me back to thinking about this post I wrote last week about the race between Kay Hagan and Jim Neal being a battle between traditional campaigning and the grassroots. Jim Neal is running a really neat, hyper personal campaign. But looking at the movement tv ads are creating in the Governor's race and the level of visibility they're bringing the candidates I think it's pretty safe to say that if Hagan ends up having the money to run at least two or three weeks of intensive tv advertising and Neal doesn't, this primary isn't going to end up as close as it's looking in the polls right now.

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