Saturday, November 03, 2012

Michael Barone Thinks Romney Will Win Handily

Michael Barone
The consummate professional, Michael Barone, presents a clearly reasoned analysis of why he thinks Romney will win.

The analysis is interesting just in underlining major factors in predicting voter response.


1. "[V]oters oppose Obama's major policies and consider unsatisfactory the very sluggish economic recovery -- Friday's jobs report showed an unemployment uptick."

2. Independents. "[B]oth national and target state polls show that independents, voters who don't identify themselves as Democrats or Republicans, break for Romney."

3. Early Voting ". . . [I]n early or absentee voting, . . . Democrats trail their 2008 numbers in target states Virginia, Ohio, Iowa and Nevada."

Barone then does specific state analysis on 16 states. Some examples where he goes into some detail:

4. "Ohio (18). The anti-Romney auto bailout ads have Obama running well enough among blue-collar voters for him to lead most polls. But many polls anticipate a more Democratic electorate than in 2008. Early voting tells another story, and so does the registration decline in Cleveland's Cuyahoga County. In 2004, intensity among rural, small-town and evangelical voters, undetected by political reporters who don't mix in such circles, produced a narrow Bush victory. I see that happening again. Romney."

5. "Pennsylvania (20). Everyone would have picked Obama two weeks ago. I think higher turnout in pro-coal Western Pennsylvania and higher Republican percentages in the Philadelphia suburbs could produce a surprise. The Romney team evidently thinks so too. Their investment in TV time is too expensive to be a mere feint, and, as this is written, Romney is planning a Sunday event in Bucks County outside Philly. Wobbling on my limb, Romney."

6. "Wisconsin (10). Recent polling is discouraging for Republicans. But Gov. Scott Walker handily survived the recall effort in June with a great organizational push. Democrats depend heavily on margins in inner-city Milwaukee (population down) and the Madison university community. But early voting is down in university towns in other states. The Obama campaign is prepared to turn out a big student vote, but you don't see many Obama signs on campuses. Romney."

Michael Barone's conclusion: "Bottom line: Romney 315, Obama 223. That sounds high for Romney. But he could drop Pennsylvania and Wisconsin and still win the election. Fundamentals."

Fundamentals. Barone stands head and shoulders above the rest. Of course, all predictions can go south, but analysis like Barone's that teaches as well as predicts is priceless because it is so rare.

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