The election is over! (Results embargoed two weeks) (Originally posted on Yahoo!'s "The Signal" Blog)
We'll know in a few days how much "Monday Night Football," Game 7 of the National League Championship Series, and Anything-Else-but-a-Foreign-Policy-Lecture detracted from the TV audience Monday night. The Signal does not particularly care about this factor, because the final debate was always destined to have a small impact. Three reasons:
* There are not many undecided voters left. In most national polls, undecided voters account for 2 to 3 percent of potential voters. This is plenty enough to sway an election, but these 2 to 3 percent are typically not voters engaged enough to be watching debates.
* For a nation that just wound down a seven-year war, is still fighting an 11-year-war, and faces the prospect of further military intervention in the Middle East, foreign policy still ranks low on the concerns of most American voters.
* The implications of this debate have only two weeks to etch themselves into a campaign narrative that has narrowed in focus to only a few states.
All told, this election is probably over. We're just not allowed to open the envelope for another two weeks. Take it away, Ohio.