According to the majority of leading US pollsters, Democrat Barack Obama is set to comfortably beat Republican John McCain in next week's US presidential election. But despite Obama's significant lead, at least seven points in most polls, some are warning against an early victory cheer.
As polling history tells us, it's not unheard of for a candidate to come from behind, just as Ronald Reagan did back in 1980. Ten days before that general election, Reagan lagged eight points behind Jimmy Carter. But he went on to win, marking the beginning of twelve years in the executive office for the Republican party.
Furthermore, some political scientists have pointed to spectre of the so-called "Bradley Effect". This refers to the 1982 California gubernatorial election in which polls pointed to an easy win for African-American Democratic candidate Tom Bradley. When Bradley's Republican opponent secured a shock victory, many analysts claimed white voters were simply unwilling to actually cast their ballots for a black candidate.
So, is the US poised to repeat the Bradley effect, or has enough changed in 25 years to insure that what voters say they'll do in the polls, is what they'll do AT the poll. And what are the chances of a McCain comeback, similar to Reagan's in 1980? Also, why has McCain fallen so far behind in most polling data?
Marc Porter, a member of Republicans Abroad France and a Professor of Marketing and Communication at the Paris-based business school IPAG.
Jake Lamar, a writer and member of Democrats Abroad France.
Keith Yazmir, vice-president of Luntz-Maslansky Strategic Research.