Back in August, a poll showed Obama with just a 12-point lead over Romney in Cook County, Illinois. While he posted a huge lead in the city of Chicago, the poll found him actually losing to Romney in suburban Cook County. It was a shock that I set aside as an outlier.

A new poll of Illinois’ 10th Congressional District, which includes parts of Cook County, however, suggests the August poll might not be such an aberration. The poll, from WeAskAmerica, finds Obama with just a 2 point lead over Romney, 47-45 in the suburban district. Obama won the district in 2008 by 23 points.

I know the district well. It is affluent, with high levels of education, and very socially liberal. Voters there take pride in being politically “moderate” and wear the label as a badge of honor. Since the 1980s, the district has been represented by a Republican in Congress, but not by anyone who could be mistaken for a conservative. Al Gore and John Kerry both carried the district comfortably in 2000 and 2004. And, in 2008, Obama won over 61% of the vote in the district.

Continue reading →