The New Republic has obtained Romney pollster Neil Newhouse’s final poll numbers for the campaign, and so we get a glimpse into the unreal skewed world of the Republican bubble.
It’s no secret that the Romney campaign believed it was headed for victory on Election Day. A handful of outlets have reported that Team Romney’s internal polling showed North Carolina, Florida, and Virginia moving safely into his column and that it put him ahead in a few other swing states. When combined with Ohio, where the internal polling had him close, Romney was on track to secure all the electoral votes he needed to win the White House. The confidence in these numbers was such that Romney even passed on writing a concession speech, at least before the crotchety assignment-desk known as “reality” finally weighed in.
Less well-known, however, are the details of the polls that led Romney to believe he was so close to the presidency. [...]
In an exclusive to The New Republic, a Romney aide has provided the campaign’s final internal polling numbers for six key states, along with additional breakdowns of the data, which the aide obtained from the campaign’s chief pollster, Neil Newhouse. Newhouse himself then discussed the numbers with TNR.
The numbers include internal polls conducted on Saturday, November 3, and Sunday, November 4, for Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Minnesota, Iowa, Colorado, and New Hampshire. According to Newhouse, the campaign polled daily, then combined the results into two-day averages. The numbers for each day along with the averages are displayed in the chart below, followed by the actual result in each state:
Newhouse did not release the numbers for Florida, Ohio, and Virginia, but based on these numbers, I am not sure why they were so confident. Their own polling had them losing Pennsylvania, Minnesota and Wisconsin. Yes, their polling had them close or leading in Iowa, Colorado and New Hampshire, but if I were on the Romney campaign, I would be concerned. Because if there was a wave bringing Romney to victory, as they said they believed, then it would be evident in all states, not just a cherry picked three. I really need to see their polling in Ohio, Florida and Virginia. But whatever. They believed their own bullshit and skewed their own polls to reinforce their beliefs. They deserve to be shellshocked.