Let’s go to the tote board, Bob.
o/` ‘Tis the season to be wonky… o/`
I can’t say I’ve done the work of the five hardcore political junkies represented herein, but I have taken a moment to combine all their assorted prognostications into one, and I think I’ll try to keep it up until the election.
There are a handful of sites that run weekly (and even daily) electoral map predictions. I don’t rely on any one of them. Rather, I like the ‘average of averages’, which moderates wild claims and clearly highlights trends.
I’ve averaged out five prognosticators I like: the self-described ‘libertarian leaning Democrat’ at Electoral Vote to the ‘non-partisan who usuallty votes Democrat’ at Five Thirty Eight, and the right-wingers at Blogging Caesar, Election Junkie, and Federal Review (sorry, showing links to both sides doesn’t make you balanced when all the commentary is pro-McCain/pro-GOP/anti-Obama/anti-Democrat).
And what do we find when we average the predictors?
Dark blue is so solidly Obama, it’s not worth polling anymore. Dark red, likewise McCain. Bright blue, likely Obama. Bright red, ditto McCain. Pale blue, leaning Obama. Pale red, leaning McCain. Grey, too close to call. If you’re a Republican, this map should thoroughly ice your bowels.
As of 7/13/2008
There are three things that should really rattle the Righties. North Carolina is pale red — within striking range for a Democrat. Indiana is grey — Indiana hasn’t voted Democrat since 1964. And Virginia is blue — pale blue, but blue nevertheless. All this means that McCain is going to be forced to try to nail down his base while Obama will be free to take shots at traditionally Republican states like the Dakotas, the Carolinas, Indiana… and of course Missouri, Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Nevada.
If we take out the leaners and just leave the likely and the safe states, it actually looks even worse for McCain:
As of 7/13/2008
With the map like this, Obama only needs any two of Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania, and it’s game over—and Ohio and Pennsylvania are already leaning his way. Most of the states in play are the usual suspects like Ohio and Florida and Missouri… but the appearance of traditionally safe GOP states like Indiana, Virginia, North Carolina, Montana and North Dakota has got to have McCain doing double shots of Geritol for his nerves.
It’s worth mentioning that even the conservative-run sites are predicting an Obama win, and gains in the Senate of three to six seats, and five to seven in the House.
The Senate gains, I’m looking forward to, so we can tell that turncoat Lieberman to get bent and throw him out of the caucus before he walks on his own—I want to count the number of times he bounces when his ass hits the marble floors, not let him slink out ahead of the hangman.
It’s early, but it’s cause for optimism!