As I mentioned in the Morning News, a new KIRO-7 poll shows challenger Ed Murray leading incumbent Mike McGinn by a mere 33 to 29 percent margin in Seattle's mayor's race, with 38 percent undecided. That's far closer than previously published polls. But if you're a passionate McGinn supporter, I wouldn't get too excited yet about some sort of late election swing.
Different pollsters take different approaches toward pushing undecideds, and there are a ton of undecideds in this poll. And if you're still undecided about an incumbent after four years in office, conventional wisdom says that you're substantially more likely to vote for the challenger.
Also, it's not exactly clear how reliable this poll is. KIRO-7 offers few details about the methodology, and no cross tabs. From what I can gather, it's a poll of 399 registered voters conducted via land line, cell phone, and Internet. And I'm particularly wary about the "Internet" part of the survey. That said, I'm pretty damn confident that the race is closer than the previously published polls. Maybe not this close, but I sure don't expect a 20-point landslide.
And finally, why the fuck hasn't anybody bothered to poll the two contested council races? KIRO-7 wastes a question on Chick-fil-A, but doesn't bother with the Conlin-Sawant race? What's up with that?