Well, polls are shifty beasts, and even shiftier than usual in July, when many voters' opinions are just beginning to form. But some pundit consensus has emerged on Gore's suddenly successful vote-hunting, and one of them might even be useful down the road. The transient? Bill Bradley. The languorous ex-candidate's equally languorous endorsement of Gore last week is thought to have attracted some independents to the Gore cause. Trouble is, these folks will probably hang around about as long as Bradley himself, who promptly disappeared. And John McCain is just waiting to steal them back in Philadelphia.
The meatier possibility is that the Supreme Court and abortion could be ready to work for Gore. The latest slate of decisions, once digested, may have gotten some, women in particular, worried about aging Justices and four to eight years of a conservative president. Bush is playing down the issue, but if he makes abortion a litmus test for his veep, why not his Justices? If Bush does as expected and ditches Tom Ridge (or George Pataki) next week for a pro-life running mate, Gore may find that a potent weapon has fallen right into his lap.
Or maybe it was just that nice suit.