I'm sure many of you have received the Obama mailing which includes the campaign's electoral map options. For those who haven't I figured it would be a good idea to share.
The mailing includes a fold-out map with different paths to victory drawn out clearly. Some of the paths to victory seem reasonable and some seem likely only if Gingrouch is the Gippie nominee.
Here's a quick breakdown: (all assume O wins Kerry states, a reasonable assumption)
West Path. Win CO, NM NV for 272 EVs
Midwest Path. Win OH and IA for 270 EVs
South Path. Win NC and VA for 274 EVs
Then there's the expansion path, which assumes PA goes Gippie.
Expansion Path. Win AZ for 272 EVs
The mailer I got asks for money so they can be prepared to go whatever route is wisest later in the year. My personal take is that the West Path is most likely, with wins in CO, NM and NV. Though the Kerry map plus OH is ripe too.
The big challenges are laid out clearly too.
New, restrictive election laws in 14 states
A more challenging electorate
Persuading Indy voters
O definitely knows we're in for a fight. We may be swimming in confidence now, but it's safe to say things will tighten and seemingly solid states will sometimes appear to slip away in the heat of a campaign.
In the final analysis, it's too early to worry about EVs. We don't even know which nut we're going to have to crack. But it's comforting to know that the good guys are aware of the challenges ahead and aren't going to assume anything. Whether we need to fight Mitt Monocles or wipe Santorum off the map we should be ready to fight hard.
Good mailing by the team. I'm writing a check today.