Since the day after Election Day of 2004, we have been tracking the number of bumper stickers, magnets, campaign buttons, t-shirts and now lawn signs that we sell in support for each of the Democratic candidates in the 2008 presidential race. While polls measure opinions of the moment, our measure tracks a more strong and lasting and lasting commitment to show their support for a particular candidate in a public way. That kind of strong commitment can turn into donations and votes. The following is the percent share of sales of our Election 2008 gear in the past week of November 18 – November 24, 2007:
And here’s a longitudinal look, showing the change in share for each candidate, week by week, during the year so far:
I’ve shown just the top five sharegetters for sake of visual clarity. This is the second consecutive week during which Hillary Clinton has lost share, and the second week in a row during which Barack Obama has gained share. Earlier this month, Barack Obama reached his all-year low point, but last week he topped Hillary Clinton for the first time since September, when the word “inevitable” started to appear in front of Clinton’s name. Few are using that adjective to describe now. And Clinton’s slip in the last week didn’t benefit Barack Obama alone; Joseph Biden and John Edwards have gained share as well. Items in support of a Joe Biden presidential bid had their best sales performance in the entire year this week — people who have watched recent debates have nice things to say about him.
It’s not long now until these indicators become moot and preferences become fixed into votes. There are only five weeks to go until all this waiting and watching ends and the voting begins. Just five weeks until the Iowa caucuses of January 3. Look for another update next week.