Cross-posted at Election Inspection
Alright, it's that time of the year, the day before the election when political nerds (such as myself) attempt to project the electoral college before election day thus making actual voting completely useless THE PRECEEDING WAS A JOKE, DON'T FORGET TO ACTUALLY VOTE SO I CAN BE PROVEN RIGHT
Anyways, Election Inspection can project that Obama will defeat McCain by over 200 electoral votes (and by about 5 points in the popular vote)
(by the way, if you want to see the map, you'll have to go back to Election Inspection, since I have absolutely no idea how to upload images on Daily Kos)
Alabama (9): Not much to say about Alabama, Obama will almost certainly inspire an increased African American turnout here, but the state is still so heavily Republican that McCain should still easily win by double digits.
Alaska (3): Before John McCain picked Sarah Palin as his running mate, Alaska looked like it might be a marginal swing state, afterwards, McCain easily locked up these three electoral votes. Even so, Obama should still outperform Kerry's dismal 23 point loss in Alaska.
Arizona (10): John McCain's home-state really shouldn't have been a battleground, but the polling seems to suggest that there is a possibility of an upset. Personally, I'm really skeptical of these polls, and I think McCain will ultimately win Arizona by at least 6-7 points, just because the state tends to be more Republican than not (even if it weren't McCain's home). Having said that, if McCain hadn't been from here, Arizona's demographics have been rapidly changing in ways which favor the Democrats, I would say that in 2012, Arizona will end up being a real battleground for the electoral college (assuming McCain doesn't, by some minor miracle, win the presidency).
Arkansas (6): This is one of those states that if Hillary Clinton had won the nomination, would've almost certainly gone blue, of course that is not what happened, and so John McCain should fairly easily win by about 9-10 points. Of course, this will come as very little comfort to McCain after Obama wins over 300 electoral votes.
California (55): Well, California has nearly twice as many electoral votes as the previous five states combined, and Obama will, by at least a 14-15 point margin, carry California.
Colorado (9): We've come to the first "battleground" (although not really at this point), and one of the reasons why I'm so confident that Obama will easily break the magic 270 threshold for winning the presidency. Even without the impressive ground-game taken by the Obama campaign, Colorado would've probably been a swing state in this election, especially considering the trend it has been taking since 2000 (it went from giving George Bush a 10 point win against Al Gore to giving him a much smaller 5-point win against John Kerry, in a year where the rest of the country moved slightly towards the Republicans). Expect Obama to win Colorado by at least 5 points, and quite possibly by 10 points.
Connecticut (7): There is nothing much to say about Connecticut, despite the widely popular (LOL) Connecticut for Lieberman Party Senator's endorsement of McCain, Obama is going to easily win Connecticut by well over 10 points (and maybe approaching 20, on a really good night).
District of Columbia (3): Obama will win DC by at least 80 points, and on a good night can win it by 90, end of story.
Delaware (3): XStryker's home-state is going to be a very dull place for any sort of electoral action this year, as Obama is will easily win the state by double digits, with a little help from Delaware's own Joe Biden.
Florida (27): Now we're getting to the real battleground, Florida will probably sport one of the closest margins in the country (which, regardless of how it turns out, ultimately favors Obama, who, unlike McCain, doesn't need Florida to win). Turnout is going to be the important thing here, and though Florida does sport an extremely well organized Republican Party machine, even it is overshadowed by Obama's extremely well-greased GOTV machine, and it will be enough to carry him to a 2-3 point victory against John McCain (at which point, we will have gotten our revenge for Al Gore).
Georgia (15): This is one of the biggest surprises of this election season, Georgia could be competitive. Even though polling might be understating Obama's numbers in Georgia, I'm extremely skeptical that he'll pull off an upset in this state that George Bush carried by 18 points. Still, the extremely high African American turnout and the lack of enthusiasm on McCain's side means I can't dismiss that possibility. McCain should win the state, but only by a slim 2-3 point margin, and possibly by 5 points, but nowhere near the 18 point thumping Bush gave to Kerry 4 years ago.
Hawaii (4): This is Obama's birth state, and where he grew up, Hawaii gave favorite son Barack Obama a 3-1 victory in the caucus, and even if Obama weren't the favorite son, it's still a Democratic-leaning state. Obama will easily win by a 15-point margin.
Idaho (4): Well, we go from one extreme to another, Idaho went for George Bush by nearly 40 points in 2004, and it will go to John McCain this year as well. Obama will outperform Kerry here, but that really just means he'll only lose by 25 or 30 points.
Illinois (21): Nate Silver (a Chicago native) had a really good analogy for Illinois:
When we ran Illinois through our similarity score matrix, one of the first states that came up was California. The comparison seems counterintuitive at first, but each state contains a similar mash-up of demographics, of city, suburb, sprawl, and farmlands, and the two states have voted with one another every year since 1964. Imagine California, throw in a home-field advantage for the Democrat, and you can understand how much McCain is going to get crushed.
All things being equal, Illinois is quite a bit more Democratic than the country as a whole, and when you add a home-state Senator to the mix, you have the recipe for a 20-point thumping.
Indiana (11): This is another state, like Georgia, that is so heavily Republican that it really shouldn't be competitive, but there are several things which work to Obama's favor. First of all, Obama is a home-region Senator (in fact, Chicago's media market bleeds heavily into the western part of Indiana), which has helped him immensely during all the neighboring primaries. Second of all, Obama has put a ridiculous amount of money into both ground organization and advertising (not including the amount spent during the Democratic primaries) while McCain and the Republican party have been extremely late to start pouring money into the state. Finally, even though Indiana is heavily Republican, it is more Republican than it should be given the overall demographics of the state, that means that, unlike a state like Tennessee, Idaho, or Utah, Democrats are underperforming their demographics, which suggests that a strong campaign would make Indiana more competitive, even in a year that isn't so obviously favorable to the Democrats. It's these factors, plus my own gut feeling, that tell me Obama will manage to scrape out a 1-2 point win against McCain. Having said that, this is a state that I'm not particularly confident in and could very easily see McCain win (indeed, my own projection of Indiana seems to go against other well-respected predictions).
Iowa (7): You know, a lot of news organizations are finally starting to come around to Obama's absolute domination in Iowa. Demographically, this state should be a swing state (and in normal years it is) but this year, Obama's midwestern roots (yet another way that being from Illinois has helped Obama tremendously), McCain's own opposition to ethanol subsidies (a political killer in Iowa), and the crappy economy have all put Iowa squarely in Obama's column. This will go to Obama by at least 12-13 points.
Kansas (6): Yet another extremely red state where Obama will outperform Kerry, but not by nearly enough to win the state. Like Iowa, Kansas is a state where McCain's opposition to ethanol subsidies will hurt him quite a bit, but unlike Iowa, Kansas is never a battleground state, so while McCain won't get the same margin that Bush got, he'll still beat Obama by at least 10 points, and maybe 15 (but no more than that).
Kentucky (8): This is the heart of Appalachia, where Hillary Clinton completely dominated Obama during the Democratic primaries. Even though Obama has no real chance at defeating McCain in Kentucky, he should still do at least a bit better than John Kerry did in 2004, expect McCain to win by 15-16 points.
Louisiana (9): Yet another red state where Obama will outperform Kerry, but by a small enough margin that it won't matter. Louisiana has the 2nd highest percentage of African Americans in the country (only Mississippi has a greater proportion), but like Mississippi, political affiliation is extremely correlated to race (by a 9-1 margin, African Americans are Democrats and by a 5-1 margin, whites are Republicans). Obama will outperform Kerry in Louisiana, but it won't be enough to stop him from losing the state by 9-10 points.
Maine (2*) Even though Obama is not a northeasterner like Kerry was, he is still primed to easily win the two electoral votes Maine gives by winning the state. McCain had made a play for Maine early on, but Obama will have no problem winning by a good 10-12 points here.
Maine CD1 (1*): Maine is one of only two states which awards its electoral votes by Congressional district (the other being Nebraska), and of Maine's two districts, the first is the more Democratic of the two. Obama will easily carry this comfortably with a 13-14 point margin.
Maine CD2 (1*): Maine's second district is the less Democratic of the two congressional districts, but this is all relative, it'll still go for Obama by a 7-8 point margin. McCain made a real play for ME-2 a while back, but once the housing market hit, he was forced to pull out of the state because of other states collapsing.
Maryland (10): A mid-atlantic state which went for John Kerry by double-digits in 2004, and Obama will met and surpass Kerry's 13 point margin with a margin of 17-18.
Massachusetts (12): This is a state that is so Democratic that all ten of its representatives, both senators (which include liberal icon Ted Kennedy and Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry), and the governor are all Democrats. Obama doesn't get Kerry's home-state advantage here, but he'll still come close, getting a good 17-18 point margin here.
Michigan (17): Michigan is really supposed to be a swing state, but thanks to the financial bail-out, McCain's decision to pull out, plus a few other things have turned this into a state which is almost certainly going to go for Obama. That said, I don't think it will be quite as lopsided as the polls suggest, but it will still give Obama a solid 9-10 point victory.
Minnesota (10): Another former swing-state which has turned into an Obama strong-hold, the Republicans decided to hold their nominating convention in Minnesota as a way for them to push the meme that they were going to be extremely competitive in the upper midwest. Unfortunately for them, Obama's roots and his extremely strong field organization have stopped any momentum from gathering for John McCain. Obama will easily win by 10-12 points.
Mississippi (6): After that long list of states which Obama is heavily favored to win, John McCain needs a state he can be favored in, and Mississippi is certainly one of them. Mississippi has the largest percentage of African American voters. Unfortunately, Mississippi whites are almost as Republican as African Americans are Democratic, and there are more whites than blacks, so McCain will win Mississippi by 8-9 points, which is still a lot better than Kerry's margin in 2004 (anyone seeing a pattern here?)
Missouri (11): Another state which George Bush won, but which I project to be taken by Obama. Now, while I think that Obama will manage a 2-point squeaker, this is one, like Indiana, that I'm not completely certain about, so don't be surprised if McCain pulls off a win in Missouri.
Montana (3): I've seen that many of the news networks have started calling Montana (along with North Dakota) toss-ups, and it is for good reason. Democrats, and Obama in particular, have been making incredible strides in the mountain west, and Montana is a good example of this. While I don't believe that Obama will be able to pull off a win here, McCain will still only barely hold onto a 1-2 point win in a state that George Bush won by 20 points four years ago.
Nebraska (2*): McCain will easily win Nebraska's state-wide electoral votes, but there is a real fight for at least one of Nebraska's three congressional districts. Expect McCain to win by a good 17-18 points based almost entirely on the insanely Republican 3rd district.
Nebraska CD1 (1*): This area includes the capital city of Lincoln plus a few of the outlying areas, speaking as someone with family in this district, I'm actually a bit surprised that the Obama campaign went into the Omaha-based 2nd district and didn't set up shop in the Lincoln-based 1st as well, as Lincoln is a college town in Nebraska. Of course, McCain will win here, but it will be a lot closer than people think, only by 4-5 points.
Nebraska CD2 (1*): This is the Omaha-based congressional district which the Obama campaign has been targeting extremely hard. I'm kinda skeptical that Obama will ultimately pull off the win here, but his organization should make it too close for McCain's comfort. McCain wins by 1-2 points, maximum.
Nebraska CD3 (1*) Say hello to the reason why Nebraska is so Republican, the "rest of Nebraska". Even if Obama manages to take both CD1 and CD2 from McCain, this district will go for McCain by a wide enough margin to pretty much guarantee him the state. McCain will dominate here, and easily win by at least 34-35 points (which will still be an improvement over Kerry's margin).
Nevada (5): For a bit of fun, let's assume that McCain manages to run the score with Missouri, Florida, Indiana, North Carolina, Montana, Ohio, and then miraculously takes Pennsylvania, it's all over for Obama, right? Well, wrong, as a Nevada win, as we're projecting, will give Obama a slight 270-268 win over McCain. Of course, that's a bit of a far-out scenario, but thanks to Obama's strength in states like Colorado, New Mexico, and Nevada, he has set up a very strong western firewall to protect himself against McCain's hail mary pass. Obama will win Nevada by 4-5 points.
New Hampshire (4): Now, here's a state that has burned Obama and played a critical role in salvaging McCain's flailing campaign. New Hampshire is, if not the most, than among the most unpredictable states around, even though I think Obama should get a solid 9-10 point win in the Granite state, I would like to say that absolutely nothing will surprise me about New Hampshire at this point.
New Jersey (15): You know, it's funny, in a different year, McCain could've probably made a credible play for New Jersey, unfortunately for him, that is not the case this year, and Obama will easily win by 10-12 points in the New Jersey.
New Mexico (5): This may be the first time in this millenium that the country knows how New Mexico's 5 electoral votes go in the same week as the election! Obama has held a pretty strong lead in the polls, based heavily on an extremely good showing with New Mexico's latino and Native American populations. Obama will win New Mexico by 9-10 points, and I will, for the first time, have voted for my state's winner.
New York (31): Igoring the extremely entertaining House races that have been going on in New York for a moment, the presidential race here is gonig to be very boring. Obama will easily win New York by at least a 23-24 point margin.
North Carolina (15): Say hello to another Bush state that John McCain's in real danger of losing. During the Democratic primaries, Obama's stronger than expected primary victory pretty much locked up the Democratic nomination for him against Hillary Clinton, and it will give Obama another pleasant surprise on Tuesday. Obama will win North Carolina by 2-3 points.
North Dakota (3): It's hard to believe that Obama might be able to pick off yet another state that George Bush easily beat John Kerry by 20 points in (this would be the third one for those keeping score). McCain should still win, but only by the skin of his teeth with a scant 1-2 point lead.
Ohio (20): Everyone remembers four years ago when Ohio was the swing state of swing states and that there would be no victory for the candidate who didn't win Ohio? Well, Obama is poised to win Ohio by a relatively comfortable 4-5 point margin (by my own projection) but even if he weren't, Obama could still very easily win the electoral college without it. Since we probably will win Ohio, we can consider this revenge for John Kerry (as Florida will be revenge for Al Gore)
Oklahoma (7): This could be one of those rare states, one where Obama underperforms Kerry's margin. McCain will easily win the state by 33-35 points and maybe more.
Oregon (7): Another former battleground state, another Obama landslide, Obama will easily win Oregon by 13-14 points.
Pennsylvania (21): Much to John McCain's disappointment, Obama is well positioned to win a solid (though not double digit) win. While I have no doubt that John McCain's bizarre decision to go all in with Pennsylvania has probably closed his margin a bit, it will not be enough to stop Obama from winning by a comfortable 6-7 point margin and thus cementing the Democrats' domination of the northeast.
Rhode Island (4): This is probably the most boring state in the election, Obama will easily beat McCain by a solid 17-18 points (and very easily by 20 points).
South Carolina (8): Another red state where Obama is going to out-perform John Kerry, yet not by nearly enough to take on Tuesday. McCain should win South Carolina by 9-10 points.
South Dakota (3): This song is probably getting old by now, but another state, another overperformance by Obama, but it will still probably go 7-8 points for McCain ultimately.
Tennessee (11): This might be another of those rare states where Obama under-performs Kerry, expect McCain to win by 16-17 points.
Texas (34): Obviously John McCain won't be able to replicate favorite-son George Bush's 21-point win against John Kerry, but he'll still win the state by a healthy margin. McCain will win by 10-11 points.
Utah (6): Scratch what I said about Rhode Island, Utah is probably the most boring state in the country, and while Obama will lose really badly here, it won't be as bad as the 46 point thumping George Bush gave John Kerry, McCain will win by at least 30 points.
Vermont (3): Ok fine, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Utah can all be tied for most boring, Obama will win Vermont by 23-24 points.
Virginia (13): Some tightening polls might suggest that Obama is in trouble in Virginia, but then again, Obama was probably never going to win Virginia by the double-digit margins some polls showed him getting. Even so, Obama should win Virginia by 6-7 points (at which point, John McCain will cry)
Washington (11): Another supposed "swing state" that is going to go heavily for Obama. Expect him to win by 17-18 points.
West Virginia (5): You know what's really ironic, once upon a time, Virginia was a reliably red state while West Virginia was a reliably Democratic state (to put this in perspective, before 2000, the only two years West Virginia went for the Republicans were in the Republican landslide years of 1972 and 1984, while Virginia had only gone Democratic during LBJ's landslide in 1964). McCain should win West Virginia by 6-7 points, but could be tighter depending on a few things.
Wisconsin (10): I know that you guys are probably sick and tired of hearing this, but this is yet another normal swing state where Obama is poised to win by double digits. Expect a margin of 12-13 points for the skinny black guy with the funny name.
Wyoming (3): Well, sorry to end it on a low note, but Wyoming is one of the few places where Dick Cheney is is popular enough to not get tomatoes chucked at him (the others being Utah and Idaho, everyone else hates his guts). Of course, without Satan... errr... Cheney on the ballot, and with Obama outperforming in both Idaho and Utah, McCain will win by only 32-33 points (yeah, I know, "only", but you gotta keep in mind that Bush beat Kerry by 40 points, so it's all relative really).
And so there you have it, this is what Election Inspection predicts will happen on election day. Now, you shouldn't take this electoral projection as an excuse to sit on your rear ends and say "hey, we've won!!!!", this should be seen as something voters and volunteers will make possible, but only by turning out. Remember, only a little while until election day.