Wednesday, July 23, 2008

ELECTION 2008: Electoral Vote Update

The biggest thing is that states seem to be dropping into play faster than we can write about them. NH and FL reenter the scene as swing states, while OH starts its pendulous back-and-forth, IN comes back into the Obama column (along with Nevada), MO is still unsure of what to do with its bellwether mandate, and South Dakota begins to teeter. Virginia and North Carolina still are up in the air -- VA especially. CQPolitics enlightens us to the swing, but they seem to be saying BO is going up, but a lot of places are showing him go down.

Seems John McCain has gone negative, posting the first negative ads of the election season. Be careful, the bump you get off of those are brief and often bite you in the ass.

There were some rumors that McCain would pick a VP this week, and it was looking like Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, who came out later and said PHBBBBTTT NO!

On the flip side, there was an excellent piece in the Wall Street Journal that talks about the cultural significance of Barack Obama and the racial politics behind it, gracefully entitled Why Jesse Jackson Hates Obama:

Mr. Obama's great political ingenuity was very simple: to trade moral leverage for gratitude. Give up moral leverage over whites, refuse to shame them with America's racist past, and the gratitude they show you will constitute a new form of black power. They will love you for the faith you show in them.

So it is not hard to see why Mr. Jackson might have experienced Mr. Obama's emergence as something of a stiletto in the heart. Mr. Obama is a white "race card" -- moral leverage that whites can use against the moral leverage black leaders have wielded against them for decades. He is the nullification of Jesse Jackson -- the anti-Jackson...

But here lies his essential contradiction: His campaign is more cultural than political. He sells himself more as a cultural breakthrough than as a candidate for office. To be a projection screen for the cultural aspirations of both blacks and whites one must be an invisible man politically. Real world politics, in their mundanity, interrupt cultural projections. And so Mr. Obama's political invisibility -- a charm that can only derive from a lack of deep political convictions -- may well serve his cultural appeal, but it also makes him something of a political mess.

Already he has flip-flopped on campaign financing, wire-tapping, gun control, faith-based initiatives, and the terms of withdrawal from Iraq. Those enamored of his cultural potential may say these reversals are an indication of thoughtfulness, or even open-mindedness. But could it be that this is a man who trusted so much in his cultural appeal that the struggles of principle and conscience never seemed quite real to him? His flip-flops belie an almost existential callowness toward principle, as if the very idea of permanent truth is passé, a form of bad taste.

This Week's Estimates... 325 (BO), 213 (JM)
Although there is only a net shift of +14BO, you'll notice that Florida has flipped into BO's column, while VA has flipped back to JM. I'm actually not sure what poll the Florida flip comes from, or why he made that call, seeing as how the most recent poll we have is JM +2...

Electoral Vote: 292 (BO), 219 (JM), 27 (ties)
That's BO-28, and JM +15. The page makes a couple of interesting switches: Missouri, North Dakota, and Virginia are now all listed as ties, whereas Ohio performs the first definitive flip this election season, going from BO to JM.

Election Junkie: 309 (BO), 229 (JM)
No idea what the switch is, but flips it BO+3. Likely it's Montana or North Dakota that got flipped in this projection.

Cold Hearted Truth: 293 (BO), 245 (JM)
Same. But I found the link to their justification to this number. He is listing Nevada, Florida, Missouri, and Virginia as red state holds, while IA, CO, OH, and NM go blue. 247 (BO), 174 (JM), 117 (ties)
Ohio flips to red. They list a lot of swing states, which makes this election so interesting. This is their list of swings: NV, NM, MT, SD, ND, MO, IN, MI, VA, NC, FL, NH. That's a lot of swinging to do. I have this small theory that a lot more states will become swing states this election.

USElectionAtlas: 293 (BO), 245 (JM)
Dave Leip has posted a projection page! Yea! Nothing surprising, in fact, same projection as Cold Hearted Truth.

Last Week's Estimates... 311 (BO), 227 (JM)
Electoral Vote: 320 (BO), 204 (JM)
Election Junkie: 306 (BO), 232 (JM)
Cold Hearted Truth: 293 (BO), 245 (JM) 259 (BO), 151 (JM)
USElectionAtlas: 268 (BO), 172 (JM)


Jere Keys said...

I never say this, but in an election that has already broken all the rules, I feel comfortable making this prediction: it will be decided by the debates.

The conventions will cause their usual shifts in opinion, but when people see Obama and McCain go head-to-head on the issues, I think it's going to make a huge difference.

Barry Floore said...

Oh, I agree 100%.

I have great faith that this is all going to be switched up here real soon.

This is kind of fun, in a way. The Republicans are starting to play dirty (my fav new trick: let everyone else say bad stuff, which exempts the candidate from saying it... remember Bill Cunningham?). The problem McCain will face in the debates is that he doesn't really speak that well, and he speaks slowly (and with purpose), whereas Obama will speak beautifully on just about any topic you throw at him.

McCain is going to have to hammer him on policy to "win" those debates.