With each passing day I get more confident in an Obama Administration. HOWEVER, I would not presume to take anything for granted, especially surrounding irregularities in the past two elections.
If the result of the election is a 269-269 tie the following happens:
- The Senate elects the VP (Joe Biden, barring something catastrophic.)
- The House elects the president under a set of arcane rules where we could possibly be screwed.
Bottom line: There are house districts that we should target to ensure that the House vote works out in our favor.
According to Larry Sabato we're looking at the following situation:
- The House votes by state delegation.
- Each state delegation votes by majority.
- DC doesn't count.
- Whoever gets 26 states (or more) wins.
Given these rules, all bets are off. It is possible Blue Dogs would cross party lines or that representatives would feel persuaded to vote the way their state did. Or that there would be bizarre procedural rules that hold everything up. If there is a hold up then Nancy Pelosi becomes temporary president--which could very well mean that the Dems will hold the power as this gets figured out.
That, however, is a scenario to be played out after the election. In order to ensure success we should target state US house races so that delegations have dem majorities. Below, I've listed the current delegations in terms of how they will likely vote and which states are at risk of flipping. Current breakdown (D-R) in parenthesis.
SOLID DEM (25)
Arkansas (3-1), California (34-19), Colorado (4-3), Connecticut (4-1), Hawai'i (2-0), Illinois (11-8), Indiana (5-4), Iowa (3-2), Maine (2-0), Maryland (6-2), Massachusetts (10-0), Minnesota (5-3), New Jersey (7-6), New York (23-6), North Carolina (7-6), North Dakota (1-0), Oregon (4-1), Pennsylvania (11-8), Rhode Island (2-0), South Dakota (1-0), Tennessee (5-4), Vermont (1-0), Washington (6-3), West Virginia (2-1)
TOSS UP (13)
Alaska (0-1), Arizona (4-4), Idaho (0-2), Kansas (2-2), Louisiana (3-4), Michigan (6-9), Mississippi (3-1), Missouri (4-5), Nevada (1-2), New Hampshire (2-0), New Mexico (1-2), Ohio (6-11), Wisconsin (5-3), Wyoming (0-1)
SOLID REP (12)
Alabama (2-5), Delaware (0-1), Florida (9-16), Georgia (6-7), Kentucky (2-4), Montana (0-1), Nebraska (0-3), Oklahoma (1-4), South Carolina (2-4), Texas (19-12), Utah (2-1), Virginia (3-8)
...admittedly, this puts us in a pretty good position. Barring massive defections on the part of conservative Dems this looks like we'll pick it up in a 269-269 tie.
HOWEVER, we'll all be able to breathe easier if the number of states that the Dems had in the bag was closer to 30 or 35. That would dampen any resistance and bring inevitability to an Obama presidency.
Given that, the following districts make the most sense to target to give Obama more votes by state:
Winning the six in Alaska, Arizona, Louisiana, Nevada, New Mexico, and Wyoming wraps up the state vote for Obama. Winning in Idaho produces a tie. Michigan, Missouri and Ohio require multiple victories to flip.
Places to play defense:
Losing anything here gives up Dem control.
UPDATE: Just moved Wisconsin to toss up, if Kagen loses then it's tied.