If the election becomes a closer contest than currently seen possible, these 12 states will be where the election is won or for the unlucky candidate, where it will be lost. As noted by USA Today, most other states and the District of Columbia are essentially in the pocket for either the Democrats or Republicans and their results are a foregone conclusion. And according to the numbers, excluding the 12 battlegrounds, President Obama starts out with a base electoral vote of 196 votes.
On that I agree.
That same 196 number was reached in a map I prepared for White House 2012 several months ago.
On the flip side, Republicans find themselves with a base 0f 191 electoral votes.
However; the USA Today/Gallup survey finds that based upon current polling of registered voters, President Obama is trailing behind both Republican frontrunners, Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich. According to them, “Obama trails former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney among registered voters by 5 points, 43% vs. 48%, and former House Speaker Newt Gingrich by 3, 45% vs. 48%.”
This is of course good news for the G.O.P. But in my own analysis which I prepared several months ago, the news was even better and still holds true today.
While the 12 battleground states are chosen based on voting histories, the results of the 2010 midterms and demographics, my own assessment of recent electoral data in these states, combines additional factors such as the issues, governors, and intensity level of other statewide elections and ballot initiatives that will be influencing the 2012 election [see my map below this post] . I have concluded that the real number of battleground states in the 2012 election is actually six, not twelve. Even though it is true that the results of all twelve swing states are not certain, my assessment finds that , Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, and Virginia are far more likely to go Republican than many are willing to admit. So while aggressive campaigns will be waged in those states, at least for the first few months of the general election campaign, the hardest fought campaigns will be waged in Colorado, Michigan, New Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin
Based on my numbers, while President Obama maintains his locked in electoral vote of 196, Republicans start out with a base electoral vote of 264, just six electoral votes shy of the 270 needed to be elected President.
That leaves Democrats and President Obama, with their backs against the wall.
With their base of 196 electoral votes, in my assessment, they have only 1 way to win. They would have to win all six of the real battleground states that I see the election coming down to. If President Obama ran the board and picked up all 6 of these major battleground states, he would wind up with a final electoral count of 274, ten more than Republicans.
Republicans on the other hand, find themselves with five different available paths to victory. All that would be required to put them over the top is a win in any one of the states of Colorado, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, or Wisconsin. A win in New Mexico would leave Republicans one electoral vote short. So if they do happen to take New Mexico, they will still need one of the other five swing states.
Interestingly, if the G.O.P. wins New Mexico and President Obama wins the remaining states of Colorado, Michigan, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, there would be a 269 to 269 tie in the electoral college. God help us if that happens. While the process for breaking that tie is clearly defined, the projected makeup of the newly elected Congress, the body for which responsibility of electing the President would fall to, would likely make it a long, drawn out, and very messy process. But White House 2012 will get in to that a later date.
For now, it is safe to say, that at the moment, whoever the G.O.P. nominates will have a much better chance to win in 2012 than some suspect. Whether you go by my six major battleground state analysis or the USA Today/Gallup analysis of their 12 swing state study, the current atmosphere leans towards a Republican presidential victory in 2012. But that is how it looks today. tomorrow may be quite different. Even if I am correct and the election really comes down to only Colorado, Michigan, New Mexico, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, President Obama will have the first billion dollar presidential campaign in history and that kind of money invested in to six states, could make it quite hard for Republicans to win any one them. At least that is what President Obama and his fellow liberals hope.
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