Un-panic, Goddammit! UNPANIC!!!

Two new polls with good news for Kerry.

While you weren’t looking, two new polls came out, one from Zogby and one from Democracy Corps, showing Kerry down two to three points among likely voters. Those results match the Fox News results released yesterday, and the Rasmussen numbers (today’s three-day spread is up to 1.6 points).

Those aren’t the only polls out there, but the narrative that Bush has suddenly surged into a big lead just isn’t supported by the facts available right now. It is, however, capable of becoming a self-fulfilling prophecy if Kerry gets Gored: typed as a bad campaigner so that his “failure” becomes the story.

Would I rather be up than down? Sure. But this isn’t a terrible place for the challenger to be a week after the incumbent’s convention and after a month of pounding. Relax, and get to work.

Author: Mark Kleiman

Professor of Public Policy at the NYU Marron Institute for Urban Management and editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. Teaches about the methods of policy analysis about drug abuse control and crime control policy, working out the implications of two principles: that swift and certain sanctions don't have to be severe to be effective, and that well-designed threats usually don't have to be carried out. Books: Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know (with Jonathan Caulkins and Angela Hawken) When Brute Force Fails: How to Have Less Crime and Less Punishment (Princeton, 2009; named one of the "books of the year" by The Economist Against Excess: Drug Policy for Results (Basic, 1993) Marijuana: Costs of Abuse, Costs of Control (Greenwood, 1989) UCLA Homepage Curriculum Vitae Contact: Markarkleiman-at-gmail.com