THE DAY SAM PRYOR was appointed to head the Committee on Arrangements, Dr. George Gallup's American Institute of Public Opinion reported that polls would have to be more attentive to the "Willkie boom" that had "started almost overnight." A rating of 3 percent just two weeks earlier had advanced to 5. Even though it still left him considerably behind the three leading contenders, the important momentum had shifted to Willkie. He had, in short, become the "dark horse" most people were talking about. The real importance of the contest, however, would be determined by whether the nominee had a realistic chance of winning the election. The mid-term victories of 1938 had been one good omen for Republicans, but what Gallup reported in May 1940 seemed to buoy their hopes even more. The survey said that while the Democrats were getting stronger in ten states, the GOP had gained in the thirty-eight others. And, furthermore, those Democratic gains were in states already lost to Republicans, such as in the South and in border areas.