49-42

The Newsweek poll shows that Kerry is leading Bush 49 to 42 after getting a four point bounce from the poll, which is less than either the Dems or Reps thought.

I am turning increasingly pessimestic about the election. I still think Bush can pull it off and I don’t trust the Newsweek poll, but it is increasingly clear that Bush has to battle Kerry, the 527s, the unions, and the media to get elected. And, to be sure, there are a lot of Republicans out there who are disappointed about the war and disappointed about the deficits and disappointed about the President’s perceived failure to advance a conservative agenda.

Bush needs, over the course of the next month, to aggresively promote a positive agenda for the future, convince the public of progress over the past four years, and beat the hell out of Kerry.

I don’t think Bush can rely solely on beating up Kerry. A lot of people are looking for any acceptable alternative. Bush needs some of those people to stop looking for an alternative and start looking at himself again.

All of this said, I an inclined to reject the Newsweek poll, which always leans Dem. The WaPo/ABC poll recently showed the President ahead. The Rasmussen poll, which I was originally skeptical about, has captured all major trends of this campaign. Rasmussen shows the race 47 to 46 for Kerry and, more importantly