Datanálisis Gives Capriles a Shot in the Arm

Datanálisis, bearer of bad news for Capriles during most of the campaign, has come out with some projections that have Capriles in the hunt (see Bloomberg in English here See El Universal in Spanish here). They show that among all voters Chávez is now at 47.3% while Capriles is at 37.2% with 15.5% of voters still undecided or not responding. Looking only at those who are sure they will vote, you get the same ten point spread: Chávez at 49.4%, Capriles at 39%, with 11% undecided.

But the real news is that the 3.4% that moved from the undecided to the decided column, did so for Capriles at over an 80% rate. If the rest of the undecided voters were to continue breaking in that direction, the result would be 50.4% versus 47.2% which, at a margin of error of plus or minus 2.4% is a statistical tie. If that is the case, the election will be decided by turnout and mobilization. 

Of course only 3.4 of the 18.8% that were undecided, moved out of that column in a month’s time, which is not a lot. And there is no guarantee that the undecided will continue to break overwhelmingly for Capriles. If they break according to the larger tendency of the Ni Ni’s (Neither Nor’s) which trend 58.3% to 41.7% in favor of Capriles that would lead to an electoral result of Chavez 52.1% and Capriles 44.5%. But this is the second month in a row that undecideds have broken 80 to 20% in favor of Capriles and that is significant.

Another issue to consider is that this poll’s fieldwork, from August 25 to September 5 occurred during Chávez’s “August surprise” (the explosion at Amuay) and before Capriles’ “September surprise” (the Juan Carlos Caldera corruption scandle). This could affect the next set of numbers.

Today’s poll is not available to me so I can’t dig in to the fundamentals. Next week we should have new numbers from Datanálisis and I will be looking at the following: Chávez job approval, personal optimism, monetary liquidity, trust in Capriles, and party articulation.