MyDD/Huffington Post Presidential Race Rankings

Current Outlook

Safe Democratic: 183 electoral votes
Strong Democratic Advantage: 7 electoral votes
Moderate Democratic Advantage: 48 electoral votes
Slight Democratic Advantage: 26 electoral votes
Tossup: 47 electoral votes
Slight Republican Advantage: 56 electoral votes
Moderate Republican Advantage: 14 electoral votes
Strong Republican Advantage: 29 electoral votes
Safe Republican: 128 electoral votes

Total Democratic: 264 electoral votes
Tossup: 47 electoral votes
Total Republican: 227 electoral votes

In the inaugural MyDD/Huffington Post presidential race rankings, the state of the contest between Barack Obama and John McCain looks fairly open, with both candidates possessing realistic shots at earning 270 electoral votes and as many as 21 states, plus a single electoral vote in Nebraska, potentially being in play.

Despite the national polling, which with the exception of the last week or so has shown the race to be remarkably close, Obama has some fundamental advantages in the electoral college with a larger base of safe states and more Republican states than Democratic states either already in play or potentially in play. For instance, all four states currently rated as "tossups" were carried by George W. Bush in 2004. But McCain is not without his own advantages in the electoral college, most notably the fact that if he is able to merely hold the states that Bush won in 2004 -- and even if he loses one or two of the small or even medium-sized states -- he could still become President.

The following are the current state-by-state race rankings, which are intended to be straight forward. Those states in which one party or the other has a "strong advantage" are potentially, but not yet, in play, while those where one party or the other has just a "moderate" or "slight" edge are already in play. "Tossups" are just that -- they could just as easily go one way as they could go the other. And safe states should remain in their candidate's camp barring some major unforeseen occurrence.

Safe Democratic (183)

California (55), Connecticut (7), Delaware (3), District of Columbia (3), Hawaii (4), Illinois (21), Maine (4), Maryland (10), Massachusetts (12), New Jersey (15), New York (31), Rhode Island (4), Vermont (3), Washington (11)

Strong Democratic Advantage (7)

Oregon (7): The fact that incumbent Republican Senator Gordon Smith, an early supporter of John McCain's presidential campaign, is running advertisements for his reelection effort tying himself not only to Barack Obama but also to John Kerry speaks wonders about the state of this race. Throw on top of it the surging Democratic registration numbers in the state, the 75,000 supporters Obama drew in Portland in May, and the Democrats' streak of carrying the Beaver state in each of the last five presidential elections, and you can see why Obama has a strong advantage.

Moderate Democratic Advantage (48)

Iowa (7): In 2004, Iowa was one of only two states carried by Al Gore four years earlier that switched its allegiance to George W. Bush. In the time since, however, Iowa has shifted noticeably towards the Democrats, with the state electing a Democratic Governor and legislature for the first time since 1964, electing more Democrats than Republicans to Congress, and turning out about twice as many caucus-goers for the Democrats than the Republicans back in January. The most recent polling on the race shows Barack Obama leading big, as does the composite of recent polls, giving the Democrats at least a moderate advantage to carry the state.

Minnesota (10):The polling out of the North Star state has been all over the place to an extent, though the latest numbers seem to underscore the trend of a noticeable Obama edge. What's more, Minnesota has a longer streak of voting for the Democratic presidential nominee than any other state in the nation, a factoid that cannot be overlooked in a survey of the state of the race. More likely than not Barack Obama will carry Minnesota in the general.

Pennsylvania (21): Over the course of the summer, the McCain campaign greatly outspent the Obama campaign on paid media in the Keystone state. But what has it gotten them? Little to no movement in the key bluish-purple state of Pennsylvania, with Obama continuing to maintain a moderate lead. With numbers like these, it's little wonder that there are indications that the McCain campaign is scaling back its efforts in Pennsylvania -- which might actually be the prudent move at this juncture.

Wisconsin (10): Judging by John McCain's travel habits over the summer, the Badger state has been one of his campaign's top targets to pick off electoral votes carried by both Al Gore and John Kerry. But if the polling is any indication -- McCain hasn't topped 44 percent in the state in the last four months, and he has trailed in each of the last eleven polls -- the Republicans still have a lot of work to do in Wisconsin before they're able to carry the state's electoral college for the first time since 1984.

Slight Democratic Advantage (26)

Michigan (17): Count Michigan as another state John McCain has been visiting of late, but also a state McCain hasn't been able to crack 45 percent in since all the way back in January. Barack Obama's numbers in the state aren't overwhelming at present either even as he has consistently led since the late spring, and he has only hit 50 percent in a single poll this year (Kerry pulled in 51 percent in the state back in 2004). That said, Michigan hasn't gone for the Republicans since the 1988 presidential election, and the Obama campaign is on track to have about twice the number of organizers in the state as Kerry did four years ago. All in all, Obama has a narrow advantage in the state.

New Hampshire (4): The Granite state is a lot like its fellow early nominating state, Iowa, in its trend towards the Democrats in recent years. Like Iowa, New Hampshire elected its first pairing of a Democratic Governor and Democratic legislature in years -- since 1874, in fact -- and elected an all-Democratic House delegation for the first time since 1912. During the state's presidential primary back in January, more voters participated in the Democratic contest than the Republican one, the first time this had occurred when both parties had contested primaries. John McCain is still well liked in the state, and the head-to-head numbers seem to be tightening. But overall, Barack Obama is still the favorite to carry New Hampshire come November.

New Mexico (5): In 2000, the Land of Enchantment was as tight as tight can be, with Al Gore besting George W. Bush by just 366 votes, but in 2004 Bush was able to carry the state by just under 6,000 votes. At present, New Mexico appears ready to flip its allegiance once more, with the composite of polling showing Barack Obama leading outside the margin of error (John McCain has led in a single poll from the state since May), and the latest poll giving Obama a 13-point edge. The state is far from in the bag for Obama, but McCain still has work to do to repeat Bush's success from 2004.

Tossup (47)

Colorado (9): Over the last month, Barack Obama visited Colorado as frequently as he had visited any other state, and the decision long ago to hold the Democratic National Convention in the state heralded a new focus on both the state by the Democrats, who have in recent years picked up the Governorship, the legislature, a Senate seat, and two House seats in the state. Registration shifts in the state also seem to be a good omen for the Democrats. Nevertheless, the polling from the Centennial state has been fairly tight, with John McCain holding leads of 3 points or less and Obama holding leads of 6 points or less in every survey since mid-April (the most recent polling showing McCain up by a single point). This is, and likely will continue to be, a very tight race.

Nevada (5): If you judge by the polling, the contest for Nevada's five electoral votes is a very close one, just as it was in 2004 when George W. Bush carried the state by a 51 percent to 48 percent margin (exactly the same as his nationwide margin of victory). Barack Obama has been trying to hit John McCain on local issues in the state, which may have helped the Democrat inch out to a 49 percent to 44 percent lead in the latest polling (though McCain has a 0.7 percentage point overall lead in the state according to Pollster.com). Expect this one to be close from now until election day.

Ohio (20): The Buckeye state was the big swing state back in 2004, and it very well could play the same role in 2008. John McCain has visited the state four times in the last month, and nine times over the last three months, making it his most visited swing state (along with Pennsylvania), while Barack Obama has also hit up the the state fairly frequently as well. The polls, of course, have the race in the state very tight, and Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight.com views the state as the most likely to be the tipping point this fall. While the map may still be more open than it was four years ago, don't be surprised if we're poring over the precinct maps from Cuyahoga county on the night of November 4.

Virginia (13): One of the more interesting additions to the list of swing states is Virginia, a state that the Democrats have not carried in a Presidential election in more than 40 years. While George W. Bush won the state by a 7-point margin in 2000 and an 8-point margin in 2004, polling this year has shown the race between Barack Obama and John McCain to be tight. The Democrats are certainly resurgent in the state -- they picked up the state senate last fall, and have won the last two Governor elections and picked up a Senate seat in recent years (and are on track to pick up the other Senate seat, as well, and very possibly a House seat, too) -- and Obama clearly mounted a strong effort in the state back in February during the primaries, but whether it will be enough to overcome history remains to be seen.

Slight Republican Advantage (56)

Florida (27): As of the middle of August, the Obama campaign had spent $6.5 million on advertisements in the Sunshine state while the McCain campaign had not invested a nickel. All the while, Barack Obama has seemingly inched up in the polling, but still has not been able to overtake John McCain in the state. The fact that Democrats are registering at a far greater clip than Republicans is certainly a good sign for Obama's hopes, as is polling showing him overperforming within the state's Hispanic population, and the recent survey from the state's 21st congressional district, which George W. Bush carried with about 57 percent of the vote in 2004, showing Obama tied with McCain at 48 percent apiece must raise hopes in the Democrat's camp. Nevertheless, McCain still has a narrow edge.

Missouri (11): The Show Me state tends to vote with the nation as a whole, and also has a habit of being a swing state, and this year the state appears obliged to continue its trend. The polling gives John McCain a bit of an edge in the state, though the race remains close. It was no coincidence that Barack Obama made his first appearance at the Democratic National Convention from Missouri, or that he has visited the state more frequently in recent months than he has any other state. McCain is a favorite, but not an overwhemling one, here.

Montana (3): Just as it was no coincidence that Barack Obama appeared via satellite at the Democratic National Convention from Missouri, it was no coincidence that he campaigned in Montana during the convention, too. The Democrats may have earned Montana's electoral votes only once in the last forty years -- and then only with the help of Ross Perot's third party presidential bid -- and John Kerry might have lost the state by 20 points in 2004, but if you look at the numbers this year, you'd see that Obama has a viable shot at winning the state this fall. Given Montana's history and its general lean, John McCain still has a noticeable edge, but this one could go either way.

North Carolina (15): The Tarheel state looks like it's about one cycle behind Virginia in shifting towards the Democrats as demographics within the state shift, so John McCain is still a favorite to carry the state this November, but the polling clearly shows that Barack Obama does have a shot at picking off the state -- particularly with the help of Libertarian Party nominee Bob Barr. At the least, the race this year will almost undoubtedly be closer than the 12-point spread between George W. Bush and John Kerry in the state four years ago.

Moderate Republican Advantage (14)

Indiana (11): The Hoosier state has been a difficult nut for the Democrats to crack on the presidential level, with the state giving its electoral votes to the Republicans in each of the last 10 elections, and all but four elections during the 20th century. Most recently in 2004, George W. Bush carried the state by more than a 20-point margin. However, the Democrats had a better year in the 2006 midterms in Indiana than they had previously had in some time, picking up three House seats en route to gaining a majority of the state's congressional delegation, and in the wake of this year's heavily contested Democratic presidential primary, the state has looked significantly more competitive than it has in years past. The fact that as of this summer Barack Obama held a six to nothing advantage in campaign offices in the state had a large role in this as well. John McCain still leads in the polls -- although at present his lead is only about a fifth the size of Bush's from 2004 -- so on the basis of these numbers, as well as the general trend of the state to support the GOP, he still has an advantage.

North Dakota (3): The Democrats have carried North Dakota's electoral votes just five times in the state's history, with the party's best showing in the last 30 years coming with Michael Dukakis' 43 percent of the vote in 1988 and its worst showing during this period coming with Jimmy Carter's abysmal 26 percent showing in 1980. Just four years ago, George W. Bush beat John Kerry by a 27-point margin in the state, 63 percent to 36 percent. And yet until just recently the Obama campaign was advertising in North Dakota -- and apparently to good effect. The most recent survey out of the state has Obama up 3 points, 43 percent to 40 percent, and no survey this year has shown John McCain pulling in more than 45 percent of the vote in the state. The historic Republican advantage in the state corresponds with a McCain advantage this year, but it is not an overwhelming one.

Strong Republican Advantage (29)

Arizona (10): John McCain is not particularly popular in his home state of Arizona. Five out of the last seven polls from the state have shown McCain earning under 50 percent of the vote against Barack Obama, with a recent poll giving him just a 47 percent to 41 percent lead. Even the local television channels are picking up on the potential competitiveness of the state. Arizona is still a Republican state, and there isn't evidence yet that the Obama campaign is thinking of seriously targeting McCain's homestate, meaning that the GOP has a strong edge here, but it could be worth keeping an eye on.

Georgia (15): With Libertarian Party nominee Bob Barr of Georgia in the mix, some -- including the Obama campaign, which just last month ran Georgia-specific ads -- believed that almost anything was possible in the Peach state. In fact, the trend of polling does put John McCain just under 50 percent in the state against Barack Obama. Amid reports, which the Obama campaign has denied, that Obama is pulling up the stakes in Georgia, there has been speculation that the state has not panned out like the campaign had hoped it will. Indeed, at this point it looks like McCain's advantage is fairly steep here.

Nebraska-2 (1): Nebraska is one of two states -- Maine being the other -- in which state law specifically permits a splitting of the state's electoral votes by congressional district. While this has not yet occurred in either state, there is a possibility that it will for the first time this year. According to at least a couple of polls, Barack Obama is significantly over-performing in Nebraska's second congressional district, which is based around Omaha. With presidential campaigns advertising in the city's media market in order to reach into western Iowa, it's a safe bet that voters in the district will be getting the message from both campaigns. John McCain still is a favorite to carry this electoral vote, and certainly the rest of the electoral votes from the state, but it remains very possible that Obama could steal a single electoral vote here.

South Dakota (3): When John McCain stumped in South Dakota last month, it had some wondering whether his campaign was concerned about the state. Indeed three of the four polls out of the state this year have shown McCain under 50 percent against Barack Obama, with the latest survey showing McCain up just 4 points. Before jumping to too hard of conclusions about the competitiveness of the state, which the Democrats haven't carried in 44 years, it would be worth seeing more polling -- particularly because there is little indication that the Obama campaign is preparing to spend real money in the state. But it is another contest worth watching.

Safe Republican (128)

Alabama (9), Alaska (3), Arkansas (6), Idaho (4), Kansas (6), Kentucky (8), Louisiana (9), Mississippi (6), Nebraska 4, Oklahoma (7), South Carolina (8), Tennessee (11), Texas (34), Utah 5, West Virginia (5), Wyoming (3)

Tags: Huffington Post, MyDD, Presidential Race Rankings, White House 2008 (all tags)

Comments

24 Comments

Not a seismic shift from previous electoral maps

Wasn't there a promise that an Obama candidacy would be a truly map-changing prospect for the Democrats?

by Sieglinde 2008-09-08 08:00AM | 0 recs
Well, that was overblown...

Clearly, many of the lines drawn in 2004 will be the same places from which we're doing battle in 2008. However, some things have changed.

- Washington & Oregon have gone from "Lean Democratic" to "Strong Democratic".

- Iowa, New Mexico, & Pennsylvania have gone from "Toss-Up" to "Lean Democratic".

- Nevada, Colorado, & Virginia have gone from "Lean Republican"  to "Toss-Up"

- North Carolina, North Dakota, South Dakota, & Montana  have gone from "Solid Republican" to "Lean Republican".

So actually, the map has changed some... And mostly to our favor. Still, I wouldn't be surprised if this  election ends up being decided on some combination of Michigan, Ohio, and/or Florida. It just helps that unlike Gore & Kerry, we don't have to count on Ohio and/or Florida going our way. With Colorado & Virginia now in full play, we have more options on ultimately building a road map to 270 EVs.

by atdleft 2008-09-08 08:21AM | 0 recs
Re: Well, that was overblown...

Yes, the map has changed some, but we would have seen the same shifts regardless of who is on the top of the Democratic ticket.  For instance, Hillary or Biden or Chris Dodd would have gotten very similar maps, more or less.

I was simply commenting on the foolish notion, drummed up during the primaries, that Obama is a unique candidate with the ability to attract vast swarms of people to our camp-- the "map-changing candidacy" as it were.

I recall many discussions here in MyDD about it, and my scepticism about that hallucination was routinely attacked as "old politics" etc etc..

Now we face the same game:  a virtuous Democratic candidate, and a Republican candidate and machine that isn't afraid to pander to the base and lie to everyone else.  NOTHING HAS CHANGED.

The Democrats have to now realize that the only way to win this game is to PLAY THIS GAME.  The Republicans won't let us change the rules (because independent/undecided voters are usually unsophisticated), so Democrats must, must, must go to that level to fight them on even ground.

by Sieglinde 2008-09-08 08:35AM | 0 recs
Re: Well, that was overblown...

I agree that "map-changing" doesn't make much sense w.r.t. 2008, but I think that if he wins and governs well, it could be part of his legacy as President, through a combination of increased voter interest and greater value placed on competence.

by username 2008-09-08 09:38AM | 0 recs
Re: Well, that was overblown...

As I said, if it were any other Democrat (save John Edwards, of course), it would have been pretty much the same map.

Hillary certainly increased voter interest and reintroduced competence to the discussion of national leadership as well.  So that Obama, in the end, isn't the transcendence people pushed down my throat and all my other orifices during the primaries.

by Sieglinde 2008-09-08 09:59AM | 0 recs
Re: Well, that was overblown...

Too much information, dude(ette).  Way TMI.  I happen to think that Obama is more responsible than Clinton for increasing Democratic turnout, but I can't prove it, so I could be wrong.  

Look, there were nuts on both sides (this was Alegre's original litterbox).  It's worth pointing and laughing, but not getting all that worked up.

by username 2008-09-08 10:11AM | 0 recs
Re: Well, that was overblown...


You weren't the only one to question all the "landslide" and "map changer" BS.  The guilty folks have all shut up about it now, but they didn't really believe in it.  It was just a way they could rationalize themselves into supporting Obama over Clinton without admitting that it was because he was black, male, younger, and moderate.

There is a national shift to more Modern policies, aka the 'liberal' point of view, at a rate of 1% per year.  Obama should be getting 52% support and leaners, and that would mean winning IA, NM, OH (the winning state as in 2004) 52%, FL 51%, NV 51%, and a squeaker 50-to-49 win or loss in CO.  But he's too soft and tried too hard for the wrong voters.  So he's kept McCain in the game.

The game changed in 2000 to the hardcore and irreconcilable terms that we've had to deal with since.  There are pro-Modern and anti-Modern voters, and getting more so all the time- that's the rub.  All this misrepresentation and misdirection of "Hope" and "Change" (well, that may have been more of a code for careerism for young and nonwhite people) and bipartisanship talk hasn't changed that any.

Now we get to see whether Obama hardens up and gives up his mushy unwillingness to talk about the serious issues of the Constitution and serious options for dealing with the Cold War legacy problems in the Middle East and Asia.  More than simpleminded sloganeering and resentment about Iraq.
 

by killjoy 2008-09-08 10:02AM | 0 recs
Re: Well, that was overblown...

"[B]lack, male, younger, and moderate," eh?  As Reagan said, "there you go again."  This comment seems to translate as "it was hidden racism, sexism, ageism, and (some policy stuff that's not worth getting into)."  Bullshit.  They were very close to each other on substance, and had stylistic and political advantages and disadvantages that could lead you to support one or the other. (You'll scream "health care!  health care!" here, but I don't care -- the only thing that matters is getting to single payer, and both of their plans fell woefully short of that.)

by username 2008-09-08 10:17AM | 0 recs
Re: Well, that was overblown...


Oh, stop trying to misread and cram everything into your "-ist" cubbyholes and rationalizations.

A lot of people here have admitted they knew and considered Obama more moderate from the start.  My personal criterion is a Constitutional one: whether the candidate realizes and accepts and will act wisely and productively on 14th Amendment violations or nonenforcements in our public life and public attitudes.

For a Constitutional Law prof who is also half black, Obama can't plead ignorance and is a mix of embracing, selectively blind, chickenshit, and just plain insecure about those.  I see a lot of his appeal coming from a serious understanding about a number of them.  And a lot of the doubts and errors and dislikes of him coming from the way he cheats himself and other Democrats of the others that matter.  Kinda ironic- after all, the speech he's given that was actually any good, the 2004 Convention one, was all about the Democratic Party representing the fulfillment and spirit of the 14th Amendment.

Activist Democrats may be in some denial about this.  But Republicans have no doubts that Clinton was the hardcore, Obama a lot more softcore.  It's embarrassing the degree to which we're pulling a 1976 again with a so much more liberal electorate.

by killjoy 2008-09-08 12:45PM | 0 recs
Re: Well, that was overblown...

Oh, stop trying to misread and cram everything into your "-ist" cubbyholes and rationalizations.

How else could you mean that people voted for him because he is "black, male, younger, and moderate?"  If you vote for someone because he is male, how is that not sexist?

As for the rest of your post, I honestly don't understand what you're getting at.  How has he been "embracing, selectively blind, chickenshit, and just plain insecure about" equal protection?  How was Clinton "hardcore"?  To me, and to a lot of other people, they were very close to each other on policy issues.  And how are we "pulling a 1976"?  We did win that year.

by username 2008-09-08 01:58PM | 0 recs
Re: Well, that was overblown...

I will bet anyone $1000.00 that Obama carries Michigan.

by JDF 2008-09-08 08:41AM | 0 recs
No OH & VA

Don't count on Virginia and Ohio to swing Obama's way. Ultimately, when the polls close on election day, both of these states will go to McCain. VA has a large military and conservative population. Yes, Warner, Webb and Kaine all won but they're more conservative than Obama. Secondly, they went on the attack against their opponents. Voters in Ohio almost always vote against their interests, so expect McCain to win there. His lack of a compelling economic message will win over many blue collar workers who just can't see past Obama's color, views on guns, views on gays, and views on abortion.

by Steve24 2008-09-08 08:31AM | 0 recs
Re: No OH & VA

Ohio is much more complicated than that.  I lived in Central Ohio for 5 years and Southern Ohio for 3 years; the real question with Ohio is always, always, always the regional issues.

I haven't been there in a couple years now so I don't have direct access to the facts on the ground, but Ohio is not Maine, it's an extremely complex state to campaign in, it's like running for Governor in California.  You need to drive turnout in Cleveland, you need to win over the Rust Belt voters in the Northwest by talking all economics all the time, you need to convince the moderates in Columbus by combining a heavy-on-economics with a side of light-on-social-issues message, and you need to limit your losses in Cincinnati.  Not to mention the extensive college outreach in Southeast Ohio.

So saying "voters in Ohio always vote against their interests" is really misinformed.  It's really "voters in Cincinnati vote against Toledo's interests."

by auronrenouille 2008-09-08 08:39AM | 0 recs
None will go his way

If Obama doesn't turn his campaign around.

I have tremendous respect for your diaries, but the race is in a state of flux right now that could make all these projections meaningless come November.

by iohs2008 2008-09-08 08:33AM | 0 recs
No attacks

Obama won't turn his campaign around. In the eyes of many Americans, Obama is afraid to stand up to terrorists and keep America safe. Can you blame them for believing that? After all, he won't even stand up to John McCain and Sarah Palin. A weak candidate won't fare well anywhere. We'll be lucky if we even hold on to the states that Kerry won.

by Steve24 2008-09-08 08:39AM | 0 recs
Thanks Chicken Little

And that helps...how!  Hope you feel better.

by thurst 2008-09-08 08:58AM | 0 recs
Re: No attacks

Don't mind me.  I'll be out in the garage with the car running.

by username 2008-09-08 09:34AM | 0 recs
Interesting Note

If this analysis were to be completely accurate come Election Day McCain would have to win all of the toss-up states to win this election... and that is assuming we can't grab any of the states (like Missouri) that are leaning Republican.

by JDF 2008-09-08 08:45AM | 0 recs
Re: Interesting Note

That's why our fundamentals are still strong, despite a Gallup outlier bounce.  

I'm ignoring the polls over the next week, I don't need to raise my blood pressure over a convention bounce.  If the state polls next week start to look bad, then I'll panic.  Or more appropriately, then I'll add more minutes to my cell phone plan and try to make more calls.

by auronrenouille 2008-09-08 09:04AM | 0 recs
Re: MyDD/Huffington Post Presidential Race Ranking

Glad to see MyDD teaming up with the Huffington Post

by werd2406 2008-09-08 08:53AM | 0 recs
Gallup: McCain Surges to a Ten Point Lead

According to todays USA Today/Gallup poll, McCain has surged to a ten point lead. I haven't seen todays Gallup three day tracking poll.

Obama needs to hit a home run in the debates, otherwise this election outcome is going to be more in line of Bush versus Dukakis.

by Zzyzzy 2008-09-08 08:55AM | 0 recs
NV

I think there's a dynamic in NV that works strongly to Obama's favor, which is the terrible situation with the economy and state budget compounded by the truly awful popularity of the incumbent republican governor. And in contrast to other states, this sense of "fed-up-ness" didn't really manifest itself in this state in 06; since then the economy and the Governor's ratings have gotten steadily worse.

I think the voting is going to be much strongly more anti-incumbent in NV than polls reflect at this point, and so long as OBama doesn't allow McCain to paint him as the status quo, he should b able to carry this state regardless of how he does in other swing states in the region like CO and NM.

by desmoulins 2008-09-08 09:49AM | 0 recs
Re: NV


That's all true, but 1% of the vote in Nevada is usually between 4,000 and 5,000 people.  It's very closely split in practice- I've watched Nevada elections for a while, and Undecideds there are really annoying- a mix of fickle and Republican-leaning.  A lot vote third party or none of the above, or don't vote at all; and there are more Republican leaners than Democratic ones.

That being said, Kerry got 47%.  At 1% per year shift in favor of Democrats on average nationally, it should be possible to pull off the 51% win

I think the loser gets 48% or more of the state's popular vote this year, so the margin will likely be under 20,000 votes.  No one's confident about the state.  And it's doing all those painful anti-decisive things that Very Purple states typically do: elect to statewide office with under 50%, a split legislature, people desperately wanting to voting Third Party because they hate deciding between the two majors and dealing with the roughly equal social pressure from both sides, lots of inmigrant voters who decide to vote defensively- for their money their first couple of elections and good government only later....

I'm trying to follow the campaigns of Dina Titus and Allison Copening (key race for control of the state Senate) in LV from afar.  It's very frustrating.  But I think/hope Nevada is the next New Hampshire: one of these elections voters are just going to flush out their dysfunctional Republican establishment wholesale.  It's time for the place to stop being West Utah and become its destiny, East California  :-)

by killjoy 2008-09-08 01:04PM | 0 recs
Oregon will vote Obama

There's no doubt in my mind that Oregon is going to go Obama's way. Now, if only I could say the same about the Senate race here. It's a real close race between progressive Dem Jeff Merkley and Republican Gordon Smith.

by Sarah Lane 2008-09-08 11:16AM | 0 recs

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