Monday, August 25, 2008

The Demo Convention Begins . . .

with the election race as tight as it could possibly be. A number of polls released over the weekend taken in Rocky Mountain states painted a clear picture of an election looking more and more like a rerun of the last two presidential races. A Utah poll showed McCain with a lopsided 62% to 23% lead while a poll taken in neighboring Wyoming showed McCain running and hiding by a 62% to 25% margin. Assuming that the undecideds in these two states break for the two candidates in the same percentage shares, both states are presently within a mere percentage point or two of the percentage share breakdowns in 2000 and 2004. Now that Barack Obama has named another liberal northern senator to be his running mate, it is hard to imagine that the Democratic ticket will have any appeal whatsoever for states such as these.

Recent polling from several southern states shows that the race in much of the south has the same deep red texture that has been the norm for most elections since 1972. So much for Obama turning the deep south purple. Indeed, a poll released late last week taken in Mississippi shows McCain up by an 82% to 13% margin among Whites while Obama has a 97% to 2% advantage among Blacks. Such racially based margins would count as tribal warfare in more than a few unstable parts of the world. While there is an expectation among the Obama camp that a large Black turnout in the south could deliver states like Virginia and North Carolina into the Blue column, such racially based voting is as likely to cause poorer Whites in these states to turn out in larger numbers as well.

As for the race itself, my model is showing the race to be 50.0%-50.0%. The model is showing that Obama remains ahead with a paper thin 272 to 263 electoral vote margin but this paper thin margin overall is supported by paper thin margins in New Mexico and New Hampshire. My model is showing Obama with less than a 1,000 vote margin in either state which truly rates as an absolute tossup.

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