For example, I think just as the RCP average back in 2008 underestimated the Obama wave in some states he was destined to win already, I anticipate a wave of anti-Obama sentiment in states like Mississippi, Oklahoma, and Texas that will reflect the wave Obama got in solidly blue states four years ago. I also don’t believe the Obama turnout will be the same as it was in 2008 in those solidly blue states.
Romney 49.8% (+1.5)
I am buying at least some of the GOP spin Romney’s support is underrated. But understand that while many of you probably still think I’m underestimating Romney with this prediction, for me to predict Romney will out-poll the RCP average by more than a full point is already out on a limb.
There are no examples of a presidential candidate losing a battleground state when they’ve eclipsed 50% in the RCP average. There are only two battleground states in the RCP average where a candidate has eclipsed 50%:
There are several battleground states where the candidates are close to the magical 50% threshold in the RCP average:
New Hampshire: Obama
North Carolina: Romney
In fact, the only two battleground states the RCP average missed in the past two election cycles were Hawaii and Wisconsin in 2004, and they had Bush ahead in both by less than one percent (Kerry won both). So if you’re looking for upsets in battleground states, you’re looking for states where the RCP margin is that close. Two states qualify this year:
Colorado: Obama +0.6%
Virginia: Obama +0.2%
Anticipating Romney’s support is somewhat underestimated I will give him the benefit of the doubt and put both of those states in his column. However, I definitely think it is possible Constitution Party candidate (and former Virginia Congressman) Virgil Goode could cost Romney Virginia, especially with Romney running pro-abortion television ads in the state.
RCP projects 201 Electoral College votes safe for Obama, and 191 safe for Romney.
The scenario I have laid out so far with the battleground states fits perfectly with why Romney is making a late play for Pennsylvania, because it appears they agree with the numbers I’m laying out there and believe it may be their only real way to get the 270 Electoral College votes required to win the election. However, to win Pennsylvania Romney will have to overcome a 3.9-point deficit in the RCP average, which there is no historical precedent for.
At this point the Electoral College – and thus the presidency – comes down to Ohio and Pennsylvania, two states where no credible polls at any point in this campaign have put Romney ahead. I think the two most likely outcomes in the Electoral College are:
Scenario A (65% chance)
Scenario B (35% chance)
I’m not going to go into an in-depth analysis of the House of Representatives since no credible data exists that suggests the Republicans won’t retain control of that chamber. On the other hand, the Senate is far more competitive.
RCP currently lists 8 seats as “toss-ups.” Five of them are in states I am projecting Romney to win, and three of them are in states I am projecting Obama to win. To get to 51, and thus the majority, Republicans need to win 7 of the 8 toss-ups.
Richard Mourdock has come under fire for his recent pro-life comments, but this is still a Republican state and a state Romney will win comfortably providing coat-tails. Prediction: Republican
Scott Brown just isn’t an entrenched enough incumbent to withstand an Obama rout at the top of the ballot of a solidly Democrat state. Prediction: Democrat
Read conclusion of story HERE.