(CNSNews.com) - What pollster John Zogby told a closed-door session of conservative leaders two weeks ago he is now saying publicly: The upcoming presidential election is John Kerry's to lose.
In a column dated May 10, Zogby admits that "Kerry's performance of late has hardly been inspiring and polls show that most Americans have no sense of where he really stands on the key issues that matter most to them."
But, says Zogby, "I still think he will win. And if he doesn't, it will be because he blew it."
Zogby lists four reasons for his prediction:
-- Recent polls: Zogby says his most recent poll, conducted April 12-15, "shows bad re-election numbers for an incumbent president." That poll shows Kerry leading President Bush, 47-44 percent, in a two-way race; and he says Kerry and Bush are tied in a three-way race with Ralph Nader. Other poll findings show a majority of Americans (51 percent) said it's time for someone new to lead the country.
-- Second, Zogby says there are very few undecided voters.
-- Third, thirty percent of voters say the economy is their main concern, and Kerry leads Bush (54-35 percent) on economic issues. People who list the war in Iraq as their main concern also prefer Kerry, 57-36 percent. But President Bush leads Kerry among voters who say fighting the war on terrorism is their top concern (64-30 percent).
-- And finally, Zogby describes Kerry as a "good closer" - someone who historically does well in the final weeks of a campaign.
Zogby says based on his polling, he believes voters' opinions are so polarized, they are "frozen in place."
The pollster concludes, "There are still six months to go and anything can still happen. But as of today, this race is John Kerry's to lose.""