Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

General Election Preview (Nothing Could Possibly Go Wrong)

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My demographic of dirty-hippie quasi-pacifistic vegetarian atheists (aged 25-29) has had pretty abysmal luck when it comes to preidential politics. Bill Bradley was my guy in the 2000 primary, and the first vote I ever cast for president was for Al Gore. I liked Dean in 2004, and switched to Edwards after Dean dropped out—and of course I voted for Kerry in 2004, with memorable results.

So I’m still a little bit surprised to find that my preferred candidate has somehow managed to actually win, and the Mets fan in me assumes that this is just the universe’s way of having a little bit of fun before things get back to normal.

But November, six months out, really looks like a landslide for the good guys. Chuck Todd’s preview at MSNBC’s First Read draws on polling and demographics to find a very favorable landscape for Obama:

Base Obama: CA, CT, DE, DC, HI, IL, MD, MA, NY, RI, VT (153 electoral votes)
Lean Obama: ME, NJ, MN, OR, WA (47 votes)
Toss-up: CO, FL, IA, MI, NV, NM, NH, OH, PA, VA, WI (138 votes)
Lean McCain: AR, GA, IN, LA, MS, MO, MT, NE, NC, ND (84 votes)
Base McCain: AL, AK, AZ, ID, KS, KY, OK, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, WV, WY (116 votes)

If you head to or the RealClearPolitics swing state aggregator you find the same results. Throw NJ and MN at least into “Strong Obama,” and PA into “Lean Obama” (he’s ahead pretty significantly there), and you’ve got a map that has a resource- and enthusiasm-poor McCain forced to play defense.

So I guess what I’m saying is that it’s a very good idea to become emotionally invested in an Obama presidency that’s all but inevitable. Nothing could possibly go wrong.

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