Things seem extraordinarily volatile in the race for Oregon's 5th congressional district.
Late last week, SurveyUSA released a poll done for KATU that showed Scott Bruun leading 51 to 41 percent. The poll was done October 17-19, with a 4.1% margin of error.
And yet today, the Oregonian released a poll that shows Kurt Schrader leading 50 to 38 percent. The poll was done October 18-21, with a 5% margin of error.
It almost makes you wonder if one of them accidentally swapped the names in publication. Assuming that there's not some kind of absurd error like that, how do we make sense of the polling?
As the O's Jeff Mapes noted, SurveyUSA seems to have made a curious choice with regard to makeup of the electorate:
I wonder about SurveyUSA's estimate of who will turn out in the election. The latest voter registration figures I've seen by congressional district - from September - shows Democrats with a five-point registration edge, 40.1 percent to 35.4 percent for Republicans.
Yet the SurveyUSA poll estimated turnout this way: 44 percent Republican, 37 percent Democrat and 18 percent other. Even though Republican turnout is likely to be higher than Democrats this year, that doesn't seem right to me.
That may be true. It may also be false.
Here's what we do know: The Schrader/Bruun race is shaping up to be exactly what the 5th District has often been -- a tossup.