30 October 2012

Bonncaruso's Electoral Landscape No. 7


Bonncaruso's Electoral Landscape No. 7: „FRANKENSTORM“ EDITION

Obama vs. Romney

October 29, 2012: T-minus 8 days until Election Day.

Current Projection:

Obama 281 / Romney 206 / Tossups 51 / Margin: Obama +75



This is my seventh major electoral landscape prediction-output for the 2012 election. Here are the links to the others:

Electoral Landscape No.
Date
Projection
8 - Final
Election Day
???
7
10/29/2012
Obama 281 / Romney 206 / Tossups 51 / Margin: Obama +75
6
Obama 263 / Romney 191 / Tossups 84 / Margin: Obama +72
5
Obama 281 / Romney 206 / Tossups 51 / Margin: Obama +75
4
Obama 332 / Romney 191 / Tossups 15 / Margin: Obama +141
3
Obama 284 / Romney 206 / Tossups 48 / Margin: Obama +78
2
Obama 235 / Romney 220 / Tossups 83 / Margin: Obama +15
1
Obama 281 / Romney 191 / Tossups 66 / Margin: Obama +90



For those who know my analyses, they know that while I am a Democrat, my electoral analyses are non-partisan and brutally fair. I simply let the numbers speak for themselves. This is a long analysis, full of data; you need to read it all to get the full picture.

There were a good number of polls in 2010-2011 as well:

HERE (national) 
HERE (Alabama through New Hampshire) 
HERE (New Jersey through Wyoming).

As of 2012, I changed the format for recording polling data and moved to EXCEL. All of the polls from 2012 are in one EXCEL DOCUMENT: Presidential Polls 2012 (through 22 October 2012).

Here the new state polls, per day, between October 23 and October 29 (107 new state polls, some specialty polls as well). The abbreviations are color-coded according to which candidate won the poll:

10/23: CT, FL, MN, NV, NH, ND, UT, VA (2), WI – 10 state polls

10/24: AR, CT, (2), FL, IN, MA, MT, NE, NV (2), NY, ND, NH, OH (4), OH, PA, VA, WI – 21 state polls

10/25: AZ, CA, CO (3), CO, FL, FL, IA, MI, NV, NC, PA, VA (2), VA (2), WI – 18 state polls

10/26: CA, CO, FL (2), IN, IA, NV, NH, NM, NY (2), NC, NC (2), OH (3), OK, VA (2), WI, WI – 22 state polls

10/27: CA, MN, MO, NJ, NC, PA, TN, VA, VA

10/28: FL, GA, MN, NH (2), NE (also NE-02), NV, OH, OH (2), VA – 11 state polls

10/29: CO (2), FL (2), GA, KS, MD, MA, NV, NH, NM, NC, OH, OR, TX, VA, - 16 state polls


Here the raw stats on the number of polls, per state:

State 2012-07-015 2012-08-028 2012-09-015 2012-09-030 2012-10-013 2012-10-022 2012-10-029
Alabama 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
Alaska 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Arizona 10 11 12 15 18 19 20
Arkansas 1 1 1 2 2 2 3
California 11 14 16 19 21 23 25
Colorado 9 15 19 26 33 38 44
Connecticut 3 6 7 10 12 17 20
Delaware 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
District of Columbia 0 1 1 1 1 2 2
Florida 25 36 43 55 65 78 87
Georgia 5 6 6 8 8 10 12
Hawaii 0 0 0 0 1 1 1
Idaho 0 0 0 0 0 1 1
Illinois 1 2 5 6 7 8 8
Indiana 2 3 3 6 7 9 11
Iowa 5 7 8 14 17 24 26
Kansas 0 0 0 0 0 0 1
Kentucky 0 0 0 1 1 1 1
Louisiana 0 0 0 0 3 3 3
Maine 5 6 6 9 12 12 12
Maryland 1 1 1 3 4 6 7
Massachusetts 11 13 14 21 28 32 34
Michigan 13 21 25 33 40 44 45
Minnesota 4 5 7 9 10 13 16
Mississippi 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Missouri 6 15 18 21 25 29 30
Montana 4 6 7 8 11 13 14
Nebraska 4 4 4 5 5 5 7
Nevada 6 10 11 18 24 29 36
New Hampshire 8 12 14 20 25 29 36
New Jersey 9 12 16 18 20 25 26
New Mexico 6 8 10 13 16 17 19
New York 11 14 15 16 16 17 20
North Carolina 17 22 28 33 40 45 51
North Dakota 2 3 3 4 5 6 8
Ohio 20 31 35 44 61 71 84
Oklahoma 1 2 2 2 2 2 3
Oregon 3 3 3 4 4 5 6
Pennsylvania 17 24 25 36 41 50 53
Rhode Island 0 0 0 0 2 2 2
South Carolina 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
South Dakota 1 2 2 3 4 4 4
Tennessee 3 3 3 4 4 5 6
Texas 4 4 5 6 7 8 9
Utah 1 1 1 1 1 2 3
Vermont 2 3 3 3 3 3 3
Virginia 22 29 32 42 52 60 73
Washington (State) 7 11 14 16 18 24 24
West Virginia 1 1 2 2 2 2 2
Wisconsin 19 30 30 38 44 48 53
Wyoming 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
Total STATE POLLS 282 400 459 597 724 846 953
National 277 400 457 512 580 629 683
National – specialty polls 14 19 20 25 33 33 34
Total – with specialty polls 573 819 936 1134 1337 1508 1670
Total – without specialty polls 559 800 916 1109 1304 1475 1636

There were 953 state polls since the beginning of 2012 up through October 29. All 1670 polls (including the national matchups) are in the EXCEL DOCUMENT: Presidential Polls 2012 (through October 29) that is also hyperlinked above.

The specialty polls (ACA, latino vote, swing state votes) are not per-se directly involved in the state calculations, but worth a look nonetheless.

As of now, the following states have not been polled at all in 2012:

Alaska, Delaware, Mississippi and Wyoming. (4 states), Kansas having received a poll in the time between. The other 47 „states“ have been polled. It is pretty safe to assume that these 4 unpolled states will vote in 2012 in the same direction as they did in 2008. None of them are likely to be competitive.

Here the 15 most polled states:

State 2012-10-029
National 683
Florida 87
Ohio 84
Virginia 73
Pennsylvania 53
Wisconsin 53
North Carolina 51
Michigan 45
Colorado 44
Nevada 36
New Hampshire 36
Massachusetts 34
Missouri 30
Iowa 26
New Jersey 26
California 25



Top 15 states polled 704 73,87%

So, the top fifteen states have accounted for 3/4 of all polling thus far, with Florida and Ohio leading the way.


Based on the polling results, which, as mentioned above, you can find all in this one Excel table: Presidential Polls 2012, I come up with the following electoral landscape:


Obama 281 / Romney 206 / Tossups 51 / Margin: Obama +75




This graphic is courtesy of RealClearPolitics, where you can make your own electoral maps.


To-date, there are no special predictions for the congressional districts in either ME or NE, both of which do elector-splitting.

My methodology is similar to TMP's, but not identical. I take the average of all the last polls within two weeks time, and with no repeater pollsters. Closer to election day, this time-frame will be reduced to one week, at least for the battleground states. Any average at +2% or less is pure tossup. Otherwise, I designate a prediction. I make no color distinction between states that are expected landslide states and states that are relatively close, for on election night, when the state is called, it is called, in one color, and that is that.


The distillation of the data from the EXCEL document is in two tables:

THE EVERYTHING TABLE:

Because it is so detailed, a legend:

The entire table is color coded: blue = DEM, red = GOP.

Column 1: "Rank '08" is a listing of the partisan rankings for that state based on the results of the 2008 GE and is not a predictor of that state's performance in 2012. The Obama states go from 1-29 in bolded blue, the McCain states go from 22-1 in bolded red. Think of it as an hourglass, with the narrowest of margins in the middle.

Column 2 is self-explanatory.

Column 3: lists the current EV total for each state. If that total is underlined with another number in parentheses next to it, then this state has undergone a change in EV total since the 2010 Census. Those states are: NY, MA, MD, IL, WA, MI, NJ, NV, PA, IA, OH, FL, MO, GA, AZ, TX, LA and UT (18 states).

Column 4: the exact winning percentage margin from 2008, with a link in the title to Dave Leip's uselectionatlas.org website, as proof. Here the same LINK. His site is the DEFINITIVE repository of electoral data.

Column 5: the final polling average for each state going into election day 2008. The title in this column is linked to the entire polling data I put out 11/04/08, with simple averages. Here the same LINK.

Column 6: "Diff. 1" is the difference between the actual winning margin from 2008 and the predicted margin average, based on the end polling in 2008. The closer this value comes to "0", then the closer the polling average was to reality in that year. Of the 29 states that Obama carried in 2008, he actually won with a margin ABOVE the final average in 22 of those states, and with a margin BELOW the final average in 7 states. Of the 22 states that John McCain won, he won with a margin ABOVE his average in 17 of those states and he won with a margin below the final average in 5 of those states. Therefore, we could say that the final polling averages in 2008 were "conservative" in their estimates, but there is a caveat here: anything in columns 5, 7 or 8 that is in italics indicates one single poll and NOT an average, for in that case only one poll was available. This data is important in looking at current polling data for 2012 - to compare.

Column 7 (“2012 Current PA”): is the current polling average in 2012, for which all of the polling to-date been posted as a large, tabbed, EXCEL table HERE. Again, anything in italics indicates one single poll, either because there has only been one poll of the state, or too much time has elapsed between this poll and the one or ones before. In this column, anything that is bolded as well indicates fresh polling data since the last Electoral Landscape!

Also, the current polling average is the decider of predicting how the electoral landscape looks right now. Anything below a +2 margin average means a toss-up, and those values are shaded in light green. Right now, there are three pure tossups on this map: FLORIDA, VIRGINIA and COLORADO. It should be noted that both North Carolina and Iowa are both currently right at +2 for Romney and Obama, respectively, so they are only 0.01% away from being tossup states. Anything above +2 will be designated a predicted winner. So, the numbers and only the numbers drive the electoral map presented in this electoral landscape.

Column 8 (“Diff. over 2008 PA”): is the difference between the current polling average right now in 2012, per state, and the final polling average from 2008. Though this is somewhat an "apples to oranges" comparison, it can tell us if there has been massive change in that state. And in the next electoral landscape, I will update these figures and we can see if they get closer to the 2008 averages or not.

Column 9 (“Diff. 2 - '08 Margin”) does what column six did, but this time for the current pollling averages – it pits them against the actual results from 2008.

One more note before citing examples: if the value in "Diff. 1" (Column 6) is a large number, that means that the candidate well outperformed his predicted polling average, something to consider when looking at the values for 2012 as we now go into the "hot phase" of the presidential campaigns.

My recommendation is that you first take a good look at your own state and get used to reading the numbers in this way. Once the eyes get used to this, it is easy to visualize trends in no time!

Rank '08 State EV 2012 Margin - '08 2008 Final PA Diff. 1 2012 Current PA Diff. Over 2008 PA Diff. 2 ('08 Margin)
1 DC 3 85,93 69,00 16,93 80,00 11,00 5,93
2 HI 4 45,26 36,00 9,26 32,00 -4,00 13,26
3 VT 3 37,01 27,00 10,01 37,00 10,00 0,01
4 RI 4 27,81 18,10 9,71 25,05 6,95 2,76
5 NY 29 (31) 26,86 29,00 -2,14 25,75 -3,25 1,11
6 MA 11 (12) 25,81 21,33 4,48 17,00 -4,33 8,81
7 MD 10 25,44 17,30 8,14 21,33 4,03 4,11
8 IL 20 (21) 25,11 24,90 0,21 19,50 -5,40 5,61
9 DE 3 24,98 20,70 4,28 --- --- ---
10 CA 55 24,03 24,00 0,03 15,00 -9,00 9,03
11 CT 7 22,37 21,33 1,04 11,63 -9,70 10,74
12 ME 4 17,32 17,15 0,17 11,50 -5,65 5,82
13 WA 12 (11) 17,08 14,60 2,48 11,83 -2,77 5,25
14 MI 17 (16) 16,44 14,44 2,00 4,68 -9,76 11,76
15 OR 7 16,35 15,57 0,78 6,00 -9,57 10,35
16 NJ 15 (14) 15,53 16,00 -0,47 10,97 -5,03 4,56
17 NM 5 15,13 9,26 5,87 9,00 -0,26 6,13
18 WI 10 13,90 11,34 2,56 3,50 -7,84 10,40
19 NV 6 (5) 12,49 6,83 5,66 3,14 -3,69 9,35
20 PA 20 (21) 10,31 7,30 3,01 5,28 -2,02 5,03
21 MN 10 10,24 12,00 -1,76 6,33 -5,67 3,91
22 NH 4 9,61 10,43 -0,82 2,57 -7,86 7,04
23 IA 6 (7) 9,53 12,75 -3,22 2,00 -10,75 7,53
24 CO 9 8,95 6,62 2,33 1,67 -4,95 7,28
-- USA 538 7,26 7,54 -0,28 0,16 7,70 7,42
25 VA 13 6,30 4,93 1,37 1,45 -3,48 4,85
26 OH 18 (20) 4,58 2,30 2,28 2,28 -0,02 2,30
27 FL 29 (27) 2,81 1,79 1,02 0,76 2,55 2,05
11-A NE-02* 1* 1,21 4,00 -2,79 5,00 1,00 6,21
28 IN 11 1,03 1,18 -0,15 13,03 11,85 14,06
29 NC 15 0,33 0,62 -0,29 2,00 2,62 2,33









Rank '08 State EV 2012 Margin - '08 2008 Final PA Diff. 1 2012 Current PA Diff. Over 2008 PA Diff. 2 ('08 Margin)
22 MO 10 (11) 0,13 0,46 -0,33 10,76 10,30 -10,63
21 MT 3 2,38 1,64 0,74 8,05 6,41 -5,67
20 GA 16 (15) 5,20 3,85 1,35 9,00 5,15 -3,80
19 SD 3 8,41 7,50 0,91 10,50 3,00 -2,09
18 AZ 11 (10) 8,48 4,43 4,05 5,00 0,57 3,48
17 ND 3 8,65 1,34 7,31 16,35 15,01 -7,70
16 SC 8 8,98 12,55 -3,57 6,00 -6,55 2,98
15 TX 38 (34) 11,76 13,00 -1,24 15,00 2,00 -3,24
14 WV 5 13,09 7,66 5,43 14,00 6,34 -0,91
13 MS 6 13,17 10,50 2,67 --- --- ---
12 KS 6 14,92 17,00 -2,08 19,80 2,80 -4,88
11 NE* 5 14,93 19,00 -4,07 11,86 -7,14 3,07
10 TN 11 15,06 14,00 1,06 17,00 3,00 -1,94
9 KY 8 16,22 12,40 3,82 14,00 1,60 2,22
8 LA 8 (9) 18,63 10,43 8,20 14,07 3,64 4,56
7 AR 6 19,85 10,75 9,10 27,00 16,25 -7,15
6 AK 3 21,54 14,58 6,96 --- ---- ---
5 AL 9 21,58 19,33 2,25 15,00 -4,33 6,58
4 ID 4 25,30 23,00 2,30 36,00 13,00 -10,70
3 UT 6 (5) 28,02 24,00 4,02 52,00 28,00 -23,98
2 OK 7 31,29 30,15 1,14 25,00 -5,15 6,29
1 WY 3 32,24 23,00 9,24 --- --- ---


Two examples of extreme stability, as interpreted from the table:

Oklahoma:

McCain won this state by +31.29% in 2008, it was number 2 in the conservative rankings. The polling average for Oklahoma was +30.15%, so McCain did just +1.14 better than the polls. That is a very low difference. This year doesn't look much different. There have only been two polls of Oklahoma, called "The Sooner Poll". The first one showed Romney at +35, the last one shows him with +30. Too much time has elapsed between the two to make an honest average, so all that remains in the one poll value of +30.00, which is in italics, and only 0.15% less than the average from 2008. Oklahoma was the most stabile state of 2008 on the Republican side vis-a-vis the 2004 results and it looks very much like a repeat performance will happen again in this year.

New York:

President Obama won the Empire State by +26.86% in 2008, but the polling there was somewhat inflated: the end average had him at +29.00, so technically, he underperformed there by -2.14 points. However, just as in the case of Oklahoma, a predicted +26.00 is such a crushing margin that two points makes no difference in the outcome. Right now, the current polling average in NY is +26.00, almost identical to the actual margin from 2008. It remains to be seen if the president will continue to improve this average as the election nears, or not.

So, both states, when you measure them against the averages from 2008 at the end, show absolutely no erosion for their respective sides. That is not the case in all states.

THE BATTLEGROUND TABLE:


The Battleground Table is a reduction of the EVERYTHING TABLE, but ordered in the same hourglass formation, only for the battlegrounds and near-battlegrounds, according to current polling margin and not according to past partisan ranking. What is shaded in dark GREY is an absolute tossup. What is shaded in light GREY is a battleground, but not a mathematical tossup according to my standards, the same standards I used in 2004 and 2008. Anything not shaded is outside the battlegrounds but close enough to be pulled into the battlegrounds, depending on which candidate starts to have more movement toward or against him.

A B C D E E G H I J K L M
State EV % of EC Polls 29.10.12 28.10.12 Shift 2008 2004 SWING (H-I) End polling 2008 Compare E – K Compare E – GE008
IN 11 2,04% 0 / 4 13,03 13,03 0,00 -1,03 20,68 21,71 1,18 11,85 14,06
NE 5 0,93% 0 / 10 11,00 11,00 0,00 14,93 33,22 18,29 19,00 -8,00 -3,93
MO 10 1,86% 0 / 5 10,76 10,76 0,00 0,13 7,20 7,07 0,46 10,30 10,63
MT 3 0,56% 0 / 3 8,05 8,05 0,00 2,38 20,50 18,12 1,64 6,41 5,67
GA 16 2,97% 1 / 3 9,00 9,50 -0,50 5,20 16,60 11,40 3,85 5,15 3,80
-- --
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
AZ 11 2,04% 0 / 3 5,00 5,00 0,00 8,48 10,47 1,99 4,43 0,57 -3,48
NE-02 1 0,19% 1 / 1 5,00 5,00 0,00 1,21 21,69 20,48 4,00 9,00 6,21
NC 15 2,79% 1 / 6 2,00 2,40 -0,40 0,33 12,43 12,76 0,62 2,62 2,33
FL 29 5,39% 2 / 9 0,76 1,23 -0,47 2,81 5,01 7,82 1,79 2,55 3,57
-- --
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
USA 538 100,00% 10 / 15 0,16 0,08 0,08 7,26 2,46 9,72 7,54 7,70 7,42
-- --
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
VA 13 2,42% 1 / 11 1,45 1,25 0,20 6,30 8,20 14,50 4,93 -3,48 -4,85
CO 9 1,67% 1 / 6 1,67 1,17 0,50 8,95 4,67 13,62 6,62 -4,95 -7,28
IA 6 1,12% 0 / 3 2,00 2,00 0,00 9,53 0,67 10,20 12,75 -10,75 -7,53
OH 18 3,35% 2 / 13 2,28 2,26 0,02 4,58 2,11 6,69 2,30 -0,02 -2,30
NH 4 0,74% 1 / 7 2,57 2,29 0,28 9,61 1,37 8,24 10,43 -7,86 -7,04
NV 6 1,12% 1 / 7 3,14 2,67 0,47 12,49 2,59 15,08 6,83 -3,69 -9,35
WI 10 1,86% 0 / 6 3,50 3,50 0,00 13,90 0,38 13,52 11,34 -7,84 -10,40
MI 16 2,97% 0 / 2 4,68 4,68 0,00 16,44 3,42 13,02 14,44 -9,76 -11,76
PA 20 3,72% 0 / 7 5,28 5,28 0,00 10,31 2,50 7,81 7,30 -2,02 -5,03
-- --
-- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- -- --
OR 7 1,30% 1 / 2 6,00 7,00 -1,00 16,35 4,16 12,19 15,57 -9,57 -10,35
MN 10 1,86% 0 / 6 6,33 6,33 0,00 10,24 3,48 6,76 11,34 -5,01 -3,91
NM 5 0,93% 0 / 2 9,50 9,50 0,00 15,13 0,79 15,92 9,26 0,24 -5,63
What to make of this and the current polling data?

First, at the national level, it is truly a tie, not just a statistical tie, but damned close to a mathematical PURE tie. Here the current national data:

Nr. NATIONAL POLLING Date Sample MoE
Obama Romney Und/Oth Mar.

AVERAGE: N/A N/A N/A
47,54 47,70 4,76 0,16











RECENT:

















683 Zogby (online) 29.10.12 1076 LV +/-3.0
47 48 5 -1
682 Pew Research 29.10.12 1495 LV +/-2.9
47 47 6 0
681 ARG 29.10.12 1200 LV +/-3.0
48 48 4 0
680 GWU/Politico Battleground 29.10.12 1000 LV +/-3.1
49 48 3 1
679 UPI / CVOTER 29.10.12 1218 LV +/-4.5
48 47 5 1
678 ABC / WaPo – daily tracking 29.10.12 1765 LV +/-3.5
49 49 2 0
677 Ipsos/Reuters 29.10.12 1133 LV +/-3.9
48 47 5 1
676 PPP (D) / AUC – daily tracking 29.10.12 1200 LV +/-2.8
48 49 3 -1
675 Gallup (LV Screen) - daily tracking 29.10.12 2700 LV +/-2.0
46 51 3 -5
674 Rasmussen - daily tracking 29.10.12 1500 LV +/-3.0
47 49 4 -2
671 Investors Business Daily / TIPP - daily tracking 28.10.12 1097 LV +/-3.5
45,4 44,1 10,5 1,3
654 AP/GFK 25.10.12 1512 A +/-4.3
45 47 8 -2
646 Pharos Research 24.10.12 918 LV +/-3.23
49,7 47,4 2,9 2,3
636 PPP (KOS / SEIU) 23.10.12 1300 RV +/-2.7
48 48 4 0
634 YouGov 23.10.12 1000 LV +/-4.9
48 46 6 2


In Electoral Landscape No. 6, I wrote:

"It will be instructive to see how much the last debate, from 10/22, may have moved the needle among undecideds, or not."

Well, 10/29 is the eighteenth day in a row where there is a statistical tie in the national polling, so I would say that debate three changed very few minds.


In previous Electoral Landscapes, I wrote very long descriptions of each of the battlegrounds, but since the nightly battleground reports have become so deep and intensive, if you want to see the up-and-up on the battlegrounds in nitty gritty-detail, here is a table to links to all the battleground reports to-date. Just click on a day you want to see:


T-Minus
DAY
Date
From 2008
Other from 2008
Other from 2012
42
Tuesday
---


41
Wednesday
---

40
Thursday


39
Friday


38
Saturday
none


37
Sunday

36
Monday

35
Tuesday

34
Wednesday


33
Thursday

32
Friday

31
Saturday
none

30
Sunday
29
Monday


28
Tuesday


27
Wednesday

26
Thursday


25
Friday


24
Saturday


23
Sunday

22
Monday

21
Tuesday
none


20
Wednesday
none


19
Thursday
none

18
Friday

17
Saturday


16
Sunday


15
Monday


14
Tuesday


13
Wednesday


12
Thursday


11
Friday
none

10
Saturday
none

9
Sunday



A quick summary: we are actually facing the possiblity of a slight Romney win in the popular vote, but an Obama win in the electoral college. This is called an "Electoral Backfire" and has happened 4 times total in our history, 3 of those times since the inclusion of the GOP in the Electoral College in 1856: 

1824, 1876, 1888 and 2000. 

I just did a large write up about the 14 closest elections in our history, higlighting those electoral "backfires", which you can read HERE. Just for fun, here is the table I created of those 14 closest elections, in ascending order of NPV winning percentage margin:


Year
DEM %
GOP %
Other %
Margin %
DEM EC / %
GOP EC / %
EC Margin / Margin %
NPV winner
EC winner
1880
48.22%
48.31%
3.47%
GOP +0.10%
155 / 42.0%
214 / 58.0%
GOP +59 / GOP +16.0%
Garfield
Garfield
1960
49.72%
49.55%
0.74%
DEM +0.16%
303 / 56.4%
219 / 40.8%
DEM + 84 / DEM +15.6%
Kennedy
Kennedy
2000
48.38%
47.87%
4.25%
DEM +0.52%
266 / 49.4%
271 / 50.4%
GOP +5 / GOP +1.0%
Gore
Bush, Jr.
1884
48.84%
48.25%
2.87%
DEM +0.57%
219 / 54.6%
182 / 45.4%
DEM + 37 / DEM +9.2%
Cleveland
Cleveland
1968
42.72%
43.42%
13.86%
GOP +0.70%
191 / 35.5%
301 / 55.9%
GOP +59 / GOP +20.4%
Nixon
Nixon
1888
48.63%
47.80%
3.57%
DEM +0.83%
168 / 41.9%
233 / 58.1%
GOP +5 / GOP +16.2%
Cleveland
Harrison
1844
49.54%
48.09%
2.37%
DEM +1.45%
170 / 61.8%
105 / 38.2%
DEM +65 / DEM +23.6%
Polk
Polk
1976
50.08%
48.02%
1.90%
DEM +2.06%
297 / 55.2%
240 / 44.6%
DEM + 57 / DEM +10.6%
Carter
Carter
2004
48.27%
50.73%
1.00%
GOP +2.46%
252 / 46.7%
286 / 53.2%
GOP +34 / GOP +6.5%
Bush
Bush
1876
50.92%
47.92%
1.16%
DEM +3.00%
184 / 49.9%
185 / 50.1%
GOP +1 / GOP +0.2%
Tilden
Hayes
1892
46.02%
43.01%
10.97%
DEM +3.01%
277 / 62.4%
145 / 34.7%
DEM + 132/ DEM +27.7%
Cleveland
Cleveland
1916
49.24%
46.12%
4.64%
DEM +3.12%
277 / 52.2%
254 / 47.8%
DEM + 23 / DEM +27.7%
Wilson
Wilson
1896
46.71%
51.02%
2.27%
GOP +4.31%
176 / 39.4%
271 / 60.6%
GOP +95 / GOP +21.4%
McKinley
McKinley
1948
49.55%
45.07%
5.38%
DEM +4.48%
303 / 57.1%
189 / 35.6%
DEM + 114 / DEM +21.5%
Truman
Truman


Until now, I have only let the numbers speak, but now is slowly the time for some well-informed opinion:

1.) There is absolutely no way in the world to know what kind of effects the huge, unprecedented Hurricane "Sandy" will have on the election on next Tuesday. There is no directive in the Constitution about this, which means that a remedy for any such problems automatically falls upon each state to decide for itself (Federalism). What if all of New York City is still without electricity on next Tuesday and there is no way to record ballots with the machines we now use these days?  I think it is very safe to say that if the weather is truly vicious and hardly passable, then in many areas, people will simply not be able to go and vote - and this will especially affect the elderly and the poor. But one thing is for sure: on next Tuesday, the 57th quadrennial election to select electors to vote for President and Vice-President, to elect 1/3 of the US Senate, the complete US House of Representatives, about 30 Governors and every statehouse, plus tons of locals levies and initiatives - will happen, the votes will be cast and recorded and winners will be declared.

2.) When all is said and done, well more than 2 Billion USD will have been spent on this election. I wonder what our founding fathers would think of this?

3.) For all the hype of "incumbent has the advantage" or "challenger is gaining momentum", at the end of the day, most voters continue their former voting habits. Every year, there are some states that flirt with the other side, but never cross the line. We will see soon enough how much of this type of thing happened in 2012.

4.) The one state that, regardless of shifts, is continuing to show a sometimes larger, sometimes smaller but very resilient lead for the President is OHIO. I wrote a considerable amount over Ohio in many battleground reports, it is worth the read.

5.) There is a considerable amount of polling coming in from decidedly partisan pollsters, all of a sudden, quasi at the last minute, without any kind of baseline from the past to compare their performance to. The vast majority of these pollsters are Republican leaning.

6.) Also complicating the problem is what I call the „Likely Voter Mode“ disease: in 2008, the polling was a mixture of RV and LV modes, and the averages came very close to the end resullt. In the cases where either Obama or McCain exceeded their end-polling average, it either in cases where the mix had far more LV then RV in it – or the state was simply not polled enough. This tells me automatically – and quite instinctively as well, that the probably of both candidates definitely exceeding their projected end-polling averages in 2012 is very, very high.


FACIT: a lot of things can happen until election day, but right now the race is wide open. The difference between this Electoral Landscape an EL No. 6 is that in-between, a lot of people have already voted early. It is important to remember: the election is, for all intents and purposes, already occuring right now.

Statistically, it looks like Obama is over 270, and if you want to cast your net wider and say that 5% is the tossup boundary, then both are still under 270, only, Obama is still closer. Even without Ohio and Virginia, if Obama maintains all of the Western States he won in 2008, the Kerry States from 2004 and Iowa, then Obama hits 272 - WITHOUT Ohio, WITHOUT Virginia.

At the same time, just a sliver of the population could truly change it's mind at the last minute and Romney could suddenly go over the top in most of the battleground states. A lot of seasoned electoral pros are now saying that this election may be decided on a number of small things alonside the weather, like the marijuana legalization ballot proposition in Colorado, marriage equality propositions in a number of states, etc.


Some other things are sure:

-if he wins, then Obama is sure to win with less of an electoral column in the EC than in 2008, and most likely he would have a smaller winning margin, which harkens back to Wilson 1916 but would actually be the first time in our history where this has happened to an incumbent presidenti whose name was for President on both ballots and the two elections were equally yoked, i.e., both were 2-man or 3-man elections. Now, some have pointed to FDR's 3rd and 4th elections and reminded that he won both of them with lesser margins that 1936, but there is no other president to compare this statistic to, since no other president has been elected to a 3rd or 4th term.

-if he wins, then Romney will have the distinction of being the second Republican to unseat a Democratic party after only 4 years of Democratic rule. See: Reagan-Carter, 1980.



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