Soon it will all be about the “bounce.” Or will it?
Larry J. Sabato, director of the University of Virginia Center for Politics, explains that the “bounce” is the jump in the polls a political party experiences as a result of its week of “media propaganda, broadcast free on all major news networks and in every news publication.”
In other words, the Democratic National Convention last week, followed by the Republican National Convention Sept. 1 to 4, when as Mr. Sabato puts in the word “boring becomes a religion.”
Writing for the center, Mr. Sabato says traditionally once the conventions have concluded, both parties “compare their bounces, and inevitably someone has a case of bounce envy.”
But don’t pay the bounce much attention.
“Bounces can fade quickly,” Mr. Sabato cautions. “Historically, this has been truer on the Democratic side. Jimmy Carter slid from 63 percent after his convention to 51 percent on Election Day 1976, Michael Dukakis from 54 percent to 46 percent in 1988; and Bill Clinton from 59 percent to 43 percent in 1992.”
And don’t think Republicans have the advantage, either, for holding their convention last.
“It doesn’t make all that much difference which party has the first or second convention,” Mr. Sabato says. “Pretty propaganda shows can move polls temporarily, but it is the election fundamentals that determine the general election outcome.”