October is finally gone and with it the “October Surprise”. This year, it looks like Hurricane Sandy took the monicker and gave the majority of national broadcast news networks a suitable excuse to avoid talking about the, nearly daily, release of additional information on the attack on our Benghazi consulate that killed four Americans. These miserable excuses for news organizations wouldn’t have covered it anyway, mind you, but now they have cover as to why they didn’t. The Benghazi debacle should have been the real “October Surprise”. Fox News, as if it is a surprise, is the only national news organization that continues to be interested, with tenacious reporting by Catherine Herridge seemingly being one of a few reporters spearheading the investigation.
Prediction to follow:
The tragedy in Benghazi would have seen a firestorm of media inquiry, and rightly so, if the President was a Republican. A true and proper “fourth estate,” such as the media has been called, would have cinched victory for a Democratic challenger, if a Republican President had:
- Presided over a foreign policy blunder that saw an embassy attacked and sacked, killing Americans in the process,
- Blamed an American filmmaker for weeks after the attack, calling them spontaneous, even though they knew Islamic extremists claimed responsibility,
- Failed to provide security to the embassy prior to 9/11 even amid numerous requests for said security,
- Failed to provide support for Americans in a battle for their lives amid numerous real-time requests for said support,
- Stated to the American people that he ordered support for those brave Americans while his Secretary of Defense conversely publicly stated that it was too dangerous to provide support, and
- Has yet to provide the written order proving his public statement true, when that order would have been required to be recorded.
But, what’s done is done, October is gone and we’re four days from the election. It is no surprise, here, that I support Gov. Romney for President. I’d like to think that my bias in this regard doesn’t cause all logic to go out the window. I try to be aware of delusional thinking on anyone’s part, especially my own, so my prediction is primarily based on data trends, not on my hopes.
Here is our starting map, with all states solidly Republican outlined in Red, Democrat in Blue, and “Toss Up” in Beige (Thanks to 270towin.com)
Michigan has been polling solidly in favor of President Obama and hasn’t voted for a Republican nominee since 1988, so I think Michigan will go to Obama. Nevada has, similarly, polled solidly in favor of Obama and has a very strong service union presence, so I’m confident giving it to Obama, as well. Florida, on the other hand, has been polling, consistently, in favor of Romney and has voted for the Republican nominee in 6 of the last 8 Presidential elections, leading me to conclude Romney will take Florida. I don’t think anyone is arguing that North Carolina and Virginia are going to go for Obama this time, so they are in Romney’s deck, too. That leaves us with the following map:
You can see that there are only 6 states left in the “toss up” category: Colorado(9), Iowa(6), New Hampshire(4), Ohio(18), Pennsylvania(20) and Wisconsin(10). And, this setup has Romney at 248 and Obama at 223. Ohio is very important, but it is not the only state needed. I think Colorado is likely to go to Romney, based off their voting history, bringing Romney to 257. If Romney were to win Ohio, as well, he will win the election with 275 electoral votes and it doesn’t matter who the rest of the “toss up” states go for. Without Ohio, Romney’s chances of winning are close to nil.
Looking at Ohio, Real Clear Politics shows President Obama with a 2-point lead after averaging the polls. However, what is not explained is that many of the polls are oversampling Democrats. For instance, the CBS/NYTimes/Quinnipiac Poll that gave President Obama a 5-point edge over Romney in Ohio, oversampled Democrats by 8 points. Their reasoning was that they used the 2008 sample, but no one in their right mind can argue that 2012 is anything like 2008. In fact, early voting for Democrats is down in Ohio by over 180,000 and up for Republicans by over 75,000 this year, compared to 2008. Also, younger Republican voters have turned out for early voting more than younger Democrat voters, so the Democrat’s youth drive has largely failed this year, compared with 2008. Actual Election Day voting tends to favor Republicans, historically. Combine those internals and Election Day voting with the fact that no sitting President has won re-election without having at least one national poll showing the President polling at 50% this late in the game, as well Romney still carrying the momentum and undecideds typically breaking for the challenger towards the close, and you have a recipe for Romney winning Ohio.
My Prediction is that Romney will win the election with 51% of the popular vote and 279 electoral votes, carrying Colorado, Florida, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio and Virginia. What say you?