Steve’s Predictions

November 4, 2008, 12:51 am; posted by
Filed under Bwog, Steve  | No Comments

Why should you listen to me? I went 13-1 this week in my football picks, that’s why!

First, I don’t really believe in the Bradley Effect — but I do think many of the polls that have given Obama massive leads are making faulty assumptions about the partisan breakdown of this year’s electorate. Not even after Watergate did Democrats outnumber Republicans the way some of them seem to expect, and when you hear bad news tomorrow in the exit polls, just remember how wrong they were in 2004 and 2006.

That said, Obama’s still going to win the popular vote, something like 52.1 to 47.7. As for the states:

Obama by 10 or more: Illinois (21); New York (31); Connecticut (7); Massachusetts (12); California (55); Maine (4); New Jersey (15); Hawaii (4); Vermont (3); DC (3); Rhode Island (4); Delaware (3); Maryland (10)
McCain by 10 or more: Alabama (9); Tennessee (11); Alaska (3); Kentucky (8); Texas (34); Mississippi (6); West Virginia (5); Idaho (4); Utah (5); Wyoming (3); Louisiana (9); Oklahoma (7); Kansas (6); South Dakota (3)
TOTAL: Obama 172, McCain 113

No real surprises here. The continuing coal gaffes push WV over the 10-point barrier, but the rest of these are simply the two parties’ bases: mostly coastal Democrats and rural Republicans.

Obama by 5-10: Michigan (17); Washington (11); Iowa (7); Oregon (7); Minnesota (10)
McCain by 5-10: South Carolina (8); Arkansas (6); North Dakota (3); Georgia (15); Nebraska (5)
TOTAL: Obama 224, McCain 150

Not a good sign for McCain that rock-ribbed Republican SC and GA are in this section rather than the last — or that MI and MN are this far out of reach. But I also have a feeling the Pacific Northwest won’t be as Democratic as the polls indicate.

Obama by 3-5: Wisconsin (10); New Hampshire (4); New Mexico (5); Colorado (9)
McCain by 3-5: Arizona (10); Montana (3); Indiana (11); Missouri (11); North Carolina (15)
TOTAL: Obama 252, McCain 200

IN, NC, and MO have been close for a while, but I expect they will stay Republican tomorrow as the undecideds break for McCain. It’s the losses of NM and CO that have really put McCain on the hot seat — there’s really only one place he can make up those electoral votes.

Only five states are left; I’ll take them from smallest to largest.

Nevada (5): Reports from early voting have Obama ahead, but not as much as you’d expect, given the partisan breakdown of the voters. I think McCain takes the state by less than 1%, although I certainly wouldn’t be surprised to see Obama pull it out by a similar margin. In the end, it won’t matter. 252-205.

Virginia (13): For a long time, I simply didn’t believe this state would go blue, not with McCain in the race and such a large contingent of veterans. But every poll since the beginning of October has shown Obama with the lead. I don’t think they’re all wrong. Obama by 2. 265-205.

Ohio (20): Another state where the Democrats’ mouths are getting them in trouble, and where McCain has been closing the gap as of late. Ohio has enough of the areas where Obama has underperformed to keep McCain alive, although not by much. McCain by 1.5. 265-225.

Pennsylvania (21): The end of the road for John McCain, even after Obama called its voters gun-clinging ignoramuses and vowed to bankrupt the coal industry. McCain started in a big hole here, and I just don’t think he can overcome it. I sure hope I’m wrong, but… Obama by 2.5. 286-225.

Florida (27): Close enough to slide to the Republican side when the undecideds break, especially given the state’s demographics. Not nearly as close as 2000, either; I see it going to McCain by 2 percent, giving us a final total of 286-252, Obama.

Basically, McCain can’t win without Pennsylvania — not unless he holds Ohio, Florida, Virginia, and Nevada, and ekes out a victory in Colorado or something. And there’s not much reason to think either of those scenarios will happen. Barack Obama is very likely to be our next president.

But McCain sure has come back before, and Obama sure has underperformed before, and the USA did beat the Russians in hockey that one time, and, and . . .

My prediction: 286-252 (Obama)
Absolute worst-case scenario: 364-174 (Obama adds Ohio, Florida, Nevada, Indiana, and North Carolina)
Absolute best-case scenario: 300-238 (McCain adds Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, Colorado, and Virginia)


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