PPP's post-Democratic convention North Carolina poll finds virtually no change from last week. Barack Obama leads 49-48, a result hardly different from the 48/48 tie we found last week.
That's not to say the convention wasn't a success for Democrats. 57% of voters think hosting it was a good thing for North Carolina to only 15% who believed it was a bad thing with 26% considering it neutral. Democrats consider it to have been a positive by an 84/4 margin and independents do 53/11. Republicans though believe it was a bad thing by a 34/23 margin. By a 47/39 margin North Carolinians say the Democrats had a better convention than the Republicans.
Why no bounce? North Carolina voters have simply proven to be pretty intractable. We have polled an Obama/Romney match up in the state 25 times since November of 2010. Obama and Romney have been within 3 points of each other 24 out of those 25 times. Sometimes Obama's up by a little and sometimes Romney's up by a little but it's never outside the margin of error. The state of play in North Carolina this year is that each candidate has about 46% of the vote locked up, has had it locked up forever, and now they're just fighting over a very small persuadable swath of the electorate and seeing who has the superior GOTV operation. Barring a big shift in the national picture over the final eight weeks it's unlikely either candidate will win by more than 2-3 points, and a less than 1% difference in the final outcome like 2008 seems very plausible.
Obama has slightly positive approval numbers at 50/49. This is the first time PPP has found him above water in North Carolina since April. Romney has narrowly negative favorability numbers at 48/49. Those figures are basically unchanged from a week ago.
Everything breaks down about as you would expect demographically. Obama is up 55-42 with women, 89-8 with African Americans, and 51-46 with voters under 65. Romney is up 56-42 with men, 60-37 with whites, and 56-41 with seniors.
There was some talk that Obama's convention speech was mediocre but by a 60/32 margin North Carolina voters still say that Obama gives better speeches than Romney. That's up from a 56/35 spread on our poll last week. Bill Clinton (59/34) and Michelle Obama (55/37) are very popular figures in the state and their speeches may have helped the President's image a little bit. Out of the newer faces who had primetime roles at the convention last week Elizabeth Warren (23/20) and Julian Castro (23/21) have nearly identical numbers, while Martin O'Malley (84% no opinion) didn't make much of an impression one way or the other.
North Carolina's been a swing state from the start and it looks like it will be a swing state to the end.
Full results here