Sen. Barack Obama is ahead of Sen. John McCain in the polls right
now, and he’s far more popular in the media and pop culture. But
analysts enjoy parsing down the percentages and commenting on what the
numbers mean. Which requires the candidates and their campaign
surrogates to answer questions about their support.

ABC News sees potential problems in Obama’s closer-than-they-expected lead at this point.

The poll indicates that Obama did not get the
traditional “bounce” in the public’s opinion by finally defeating Sen.
Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., and getting her endorsement as the Democratic
presidential candidate.

Actually, the bounce that counts always comes after the party convention. 

While leading among young voters and other key
demographics, ABC News chief Washington correspondent George
Stephanopoulos saw what he called “danger signs” for Obama.

In an exclusive network interview with ABC News, Obama said that his
long Democratic primary battle with Clinton, which wasn’t settled until
early June, spared McCain critical scrutiny.

“While we were doing that, John McCain basically was getting a pass,
both from the media . . . as well as from other opponents. And so I
think that explains it,” said Obama of the close race.

Getting a pass from the media?! This, from the candidate who has enjoyed more media adoration than any other in…history?

It is an ironic accusation from Obama.

During the bitter Democratic fight, the Clinton camp repeatedly complained that Obama was getting a pass from the media.

And they would know, because they enjoyed it for about the past 16 years.

Obama also tried to head off any inroads McCain might
make among women voters by arguing on GMA that “on almost every single
issue that’s important to women, he [McCain] has been on the wrong
side.”

Obama is talking to only one demographic of women about what’s important to women. For now, that liberal group of abortion activists are grabbing the attention.

Elizabeth Shipp, the pro-abortion group’s political
director, says she’s not too worried yet about the polling results —
saying NARAL has time to run attack ads against McCain across the
country.

“Most voters start paying attention very late in the process,
especially women,” Shipp said. “As we move into the general election
and we get into October, people start understanding. When they hear
about choice positions, that helps clearly define in their mind where
candidates stand on a host of other issues.”

It certainly does.

Sheila Liaugminas

Sheila Liaugminas is an Emmy award-winning Chicago-based journalist in print and broadcast media. Her writing and broadcasting covers matters of faith, culture, politics and the media....