Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Electoral college poll shifts even more solidly towards Obama, 364 to 174

As most of us know, the popular vote does not determine who becomes president and the overall national polls map to the popular vote, not the electoral college votes. But RealCearPolitics does have a map of the comparable electoral college vote based on the state-by-state polls. Currently, the map shows Obama with 196 solid electoral college votes and McCain with 143. Obama has 68 leaning votes to McCain's 20 leaners. The remaining 111 electoral votes are toss-ups. The toss-ups have been steadily shifting to leaning to Obama. Excluding tossups, Obama has 264 electoral votes, McCain 163. Including toss-ups, Obama has 364 and McCain 174. That is the bottom line, Obama has a significant lead in the total electoral college vote tally, but all leaning and toss-ups are subject to change on short notice..

Some people say that Ohio represents the entire country. The map still shows Ohio as a toss-up, but now with Obama slightly ahead by 3.4%.

McCain is quite clearly losing momentum while Barack is quite clearly gaining momentum.

The real clear bottom line is that although this election is not a slam-dunk for either candidate, Obama is now quite clearly in the lead. But, it is too early to claim a win based on toss-ups and leaners.

At this stage, I would say that the election is Obama's to lose. All he really has to do is stay relatively positive and look and act "presidential" and avoid making any wild claims or promises that might lead voters to conclude that he is a space cadet. McCain is effectively asleep at the wheel.

There is still a chance that Obama could lose a fair chunk of his "leaning" votes due to "The Bradley Effect" (people reluctant to admit to pollsters that they are racially biased), but that is too difficult to evaluate at this time. Personally, I think the effect is overrated, but it has never been tested before at the national level.

Obama has a potential advantage in that his team is really good at registering new voters and reaching out to young voters, many of whom do not have traditional phones so they would not show up in traditional polling. He may in fact currently have a 2% to 5% advantage that the polls cannot see. Obama also has the advantage of opposing the war in Iraq (and planning to get out ASAP) and a crummy economy and poor financial regulatory oversight. McCain's primary advantage is simply that most sane people do not trust non-centrist Democrats with either defense or the economy. Obama may have plans, but they do not have credibility with many people.

-- Jack Krupansky


At 4:35 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

The real issue is not how well Obama or McCain might do state-by-state, but that we shouldn't have battleground states and spectator states in the first place. Every vote in every state should be politically relevant in a presidential election. And, every vote should be equal. We should have a national popular vote for President in which the White House goes to the candidate who gets the most popular votes in all 50 states.

The National Popular Vote bill would guarantee the Presidency to the candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states (and DC). The bill would take effect only when enacted, in identical form, by states possessing a majority of the electoral vote -- that is, enough electoral votes to elect a President (270 of 538). When the bill comes into effect, all the electoral votes from those states would be awarded to the presidential candidate who receives the most popular votes in all 50 states (and DC).

Because of state-by-state enacted rules for winner-take-all awarding of their electoral votes, recent candidates with limited funds have concentrated their attention on a handful of closely divided "battleground" states. In 2004 two-thirds of the visits and money were focused in just six states; 88% on 9 states, and 99% of the money went to just 16 states. Two-thirds of the states and people have been merely spectators to the presidential election.

Another shortcoming of the current system is that a candidate can win the Presidency without winning the most popular votes nationwide.

The National Popular Vote bill has passed 21 state legislative chambers, including one house in Arkansas, Colorado, Maine, North Carolina, and Washington, and both houses in California, Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey, Maryland, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Vermont. The bill has been enacted by Hawaii, Illinois, New Jersey, and Maryland. These four states possess 50 electoral votes-- 19% of the 270 necessary to bring the law into effect.

See http://www.NationalPopularVote.com



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