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As anyone who watched Public Policy Polling guru Tom Jensen (pictured at left) on News 14 Carolina last night with Chris Fitzsimon and John Hood can attest, North Carolina is fortunate to have such a remarkably talented and informed person in our state.

Today, a national study from Fordham University confirmed what those of us who’ve been fortunate enough to work with Tom (like NC Policy Watch) already knew: he’s among the best in the country (if not the best) at what he does.

According to the study, Public Policy Polling is the most accurate national polster out of 28 ranked. Meanwhile, the famous Gallup poll came in 24th.

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The final pre-election poll from Public Policy Polling (which has a remarkably accurate record in predicting outcomes)suggests that it could be Wednesday at least before we know who will claim North Carolina’s electoral votes in the presidential election:

“the candidates are tied at 49 there based on rounded numbers, but if you break it out to decimal points Romney’s up 49.4% to 49.2% with 457 respondents having chosen him to 455 for Obama….

Our last three polls in North Carolina have all come out as ties. Barack Obama has built up a 54/45 lead during the early voting period, but Mitt Romney’s ahead 57/41 with those planning to vote on election day. Romney is making up for the registration advantage Democrats in the state have with a 55/40 lead among independent voters. Beyond that the race pretty much breaks down as you would expect. Obama is up with women (54/46), African Americans (87/12), and young voters (55/42). Romney is winning with men (54/44), whites (62/37), and seniors (58/41).”

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North Carolinians who want to be “in the know” at this wild, crazy and important moment in state politics won’t want to miss this Thursday’s  NC Policy Watch Crucial Conversation luncheon featuring North Carolina’s leading pollster and top political commentator.

Don’t miss this chance to get the latest scoop on what the next several months will hold. Register today– Seats are going fast.

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If you haven’t already signed up, this morning’s news that Gov. Perdue may not seek a second term ought to provide you with all the impetus you need to come to next week’s NC Policy Watch Crucial Conversation luncheon featuring North Carolina’s leading pollster and top political commentator.

Don’t miss this chance to get the latest scoop on what the next several months will hold. Register today– Seats are going fast.

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The coming political year: What will happen? What should happen?

It looks like 2012 is going to be one heck of a year in North Carolina politics and public policy — maybe one for the ages.

Between the General Assembly’s “midnight madness” fiasco, other special legislative sessions, a statewide vote on a constitutional amendment to restrict marriage, a presidential primary, a court fight over redistricting, a legislative “short session,” chronic economic and fiscal crises, a presidential/ gubernatorial/ council of state/ legislative election and the most aggressively reactionary state legislature in decades, it’s hard to imagine how things could be much crazier.

So what does public opinion tells us is going to happen? What ought to happen?

Don’t miss a chance to gather some answers to these questions from two of the state’s leading experts. Join us at noon on Thursday, February 2, for a Crucial Conversation lunch featuring: Tom Jensen of Public Policy Polling and our own Chris Fitzsimon.

Click here for more details.