Republican political strategist Karl Rove says it may be too late for President Barack Obama to rise in the polls because the undecided voters are unlikely to break in his favor in the closing days of the campaign.
"Absent some major episode, some big inflection point, it's going to be awfully hard to change the direction of it," Rove told Fox News' Sean Hannity Thursday night.
"If you're the incumbent president, you've got to be at or above 50 percent. The undecideds, at the end, are unlikely to break towards you," he said. "And in a close race like this, every bit of evidence we got is that the president's detractors are more energized than his supporters are, particularly supporters in the Latino and among the millennials, the 18 to 29-year-old voters. They're just not enthusiastic at all about him.
"So the president's got . . . to get himself up above 50 [percent in the polls], and the strategy that he's adopted, I think, is unlikely to get him there," Rove said.
Rove, a Fox News contributor whose Crossroads GPS PAC has spent millions on advertising in support of Republican campaigns this year, said he believes Mitt Romney has already locked up the key states of Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia, and is "poised" to take Colorado and New Hampshire.
But he said the battle is still raging in the swing states of Nevada, Iowa, Wisconsin, and Ohio, where some polls have the two candidates virtually even and others have Obama ahead by 4 percentage points.
"Ohio is tight in the polls, but again, my sense is that we're likely to see a Romney victory in the state because the momentum is with him," Rove told Hannity. "His people are more energized. And the president's got a lousy message [attacking Romney] here at the end, and Romney's got one that's optimistic, upbeat and forward-looking."
Recalling the race in 2008 between Obama and Arizona Sen. John McCain, Rove noted the president won the state "by 4 percent," the lead some polls give him now.
But he said the polls also show Romney still trending upwards, which wasn't the case with McCain four years ago.
"So if you've got [Obama] trending downward 3 or 4 points and Romney trending up a couple of points, as opposed to McCain, you got a state that's likely to end up in the Republican column," he said.
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