Disgruntled Republicans Returning to McCain?

Not from what I’ve seen, but a new poll apparantly shows McCain has made up some lost ground. I’d call this obvious since once he became the nominee, undoubtedly many Republican voters will “fall in line” behind him, regardless of their quibbles with him.

Here’s a report on it from Yahoo News:

WASHINGTON (AP) — Republicans are no longer underdogs in the race for the White House. To pull that off, John McCain has attracted disgruntled GOP voters, independents and even some moderate Democrats who shunned his party last fall.

Partly thanks to an increasingly likable image, the Republican presidential candidate has pulled even with the two Democrats still brawling for their party’s nomination, according to an Associated Press-Yahoo! News poll released Thursday. Just five months ago — before either party had winnowed its field — the survey showed people preferred sending an unnamed Democrat over a Republican to the White House by 13 percentage points.

Also helping the Arizona senator close the gap: Peoples’ opinions of Hillary Rodham Clinton have soured slightly, while their views of Barack Obama have improved though less impressively than McCain’s.

The survey suggests that those switching to McCain are largely attuned to his personal qualities and McCain may be benefiting as the two Democrats snipe at each other during their prolonged nomination fight.

So where do the Republican voters come in? Right here:

By tracking the same group of roughly 2,000 people throughout the campaign, the AP-Yahoo poll can gauge how individual views are evolving. What’s clear is that some Republican-leaning voters who backed Bush in 2004 but lost enthusiasm for him are returning to the GOP fold _ along with a smaller but significant number of Democrats who have come to dislike their party’s two contenders.

The findings of the survey, conducted by Knowledge Networks, provide a preview of one of this fall’s battlegrounds. Though some unhappy Republicans will doubtless stay with McCain, both groups are teeming with centrist swing voters who will be targeted by both parties.

This isn’t that absurd of a notion, many voters will back their nominee, once they have a nominee. McCain has become the GOP nominee and, therefore, has also captured the support that will automatically bring. That being said, the conservative donors aren’t opening their checkbooks for McCain in the way he needs them to.