Skip to main content

Apparently, I am no better than the rest of the traditional press. Just yesterday, I wrote the following:

The best Romney can hope for, and this is a very legitimate possibility, is that the media will treat the nomination contest as a non-event from this point forward. That would allow him to train all of his attention on Barack Obama, and try to frame the race as a general election contest from this point forward.
So, to what subject am I devoting not just my analysis after the jump today, but also an entire piece this weekend? Romney as a general election candidate.

Oh, the horror...

GOP PRIMARY POLLING:

NATIONAL (Gallup Tracking): Romney 38, Santorum 27, Gingrich 14, Paul 9

CONNECTICUT (Quinnipiac): Romney 42, Santorum 19, Gingrich 13, Paul 9

LOUISIANA (Rasmussen): Santorum 43, Romney 31, Gingrich 16, Paul 5

OREGON (SurveyUSA): Romney 38, Santorum 31, Gingrich 14, Paul 9

GENERAL ELECTION TRIAL HEATS:
NATIONAL (PPP): Obama d. Paul (46-43); Obama d. Santorum (48-45); Obama d. Romney (48-44); Obama d. Gingrich (50-42)

NATIONAL (Rasmussen Tracking): Obama d. Romney (47-44); Obama d. Santorum (49-41)

"SWING STATES"* (Purple Strategies): Obama d. Romney (48-44); Obama d. Santorum (50-42)

CONNECTICUT (Quinnipiac): Obama d. Romney (53-37); Obama d. Santorum (55-35)

NEW HAMPSHIRE (American Research Group): Obama d. Romney (48-41); Obama d. Santorum (48-37)

OREGON (SurveyUSA): Obama d. Paul (48-39); Obama d. Santorum (49-40); Obama d. Romney (50-39); Obama d. Gingrich (54-34)

VIRGINIA (Rasmussen): Obama d. Romney (51-42); Obama d. Santorum (53-39)

(*) "Swing States" defined as Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Minnesota, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and Wisconsin.

Today's data, as has been the case for most of the recent numbers, paints a picture of Mitt Romney being the guy for the GOP. At least, someday he'll be the guy. But what about November? A few thoughts beyond the fold.

So, assuming that Mitt Romney eventually limps and stumbles his way to the Republican nomination, how does he stand for November?

Let's start with a stipulation: by definition, he should start in an incrementally better position, in the Electoral College, than John McCain had in 2008. The reason, as you can see here, is that reapportionment has shifted a total of six electoral votes into the GOP column. Therefore, even if the breakdown by states was identical to 2008, the Obama victory would shift from 365-173 to 359-179.

Also, though this is exceptionally debatable, let's toss another dozen electoral votes to Mitt Romney. Let's give him the lone electoral vote Barack Obama snagged in Nebraska, and let's also hand over the biggest Obama upset special in 2008: Indiana. There haven't been many polls in either state, but what little polling there has been in Indiana has leaned GOP, and the polls on Nebraska's Omaha-based 2nd district has been mixed. So, to be conservative, let's throw all 12 electoral votes into the GOP column, decreasing the Obama edge to 347-191.

After that, however, is where it gets tricky for the GOP. Name a state beyond that which meets the following two characteristics: (1) it was an Obama 2008 state; (2) it is a state where Mitt Romney has led in the majority of the 2012 polling there.

This is the math exercise I will be embarking on before Sunday, when my extensive piece on this race will appear here at Daily Kos. But my immediate guess is this: the GOP needs an additional 79 electoral votes to forge a coalition that will elect Mitt Romney. I am going to say with total confidence that there are not states comprising 79 electoral votes which have consistently sided with the GOP in this past year.

For just one example, take the commonwealth of Virginia, which was polled today by the House of Ras. Not only can we no longer call the GOP a betting favorite in Virginia, it is difficult after the last three polls to even say that the state is a toss-up right now. Rasmussen had the Obama lead at nine. Quinnipiac also had the Obama lead at nine. NBC/Marist, memorably, had that race at a 17-point Obama lead earlier this month. It's pretty hard to throw those 13 electoral votes into the GOP column, barring a serious shift in voter preferences.

Take even the House of Ras on this subject. If, as they have posited in the past few weeks, Obama leads in Ohio, Nevada, Florida, and Virginia, how does the GOP make it to 270? And that's Rasmussen!

A lot can change in eight months, needless to say. But it is hard for me to take any analyst seriously right now who doesn't make the president the betting favorite based on what we're seeing right now. And I'll have the numbers to prove it, come Sunday.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Elections on Thu Mar 22, 2012 at 05:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site