Saturday, October 25, 2008

Electoral Projection: Tightening the Vice

John McCain hasn't found the game changer he's been looking for. For McCain, game changers probably don't exist unless you count Sarah Palin. One could argue that she changed the course of McCain's campaign from the very beginning. McCain's sinking ship has been on the wrong course from the very moment he chose Palin as his running mate. When all is said and done, historians might look at the Palin pick as one of those rare moments when the veep pick actually did matter.

Over the last few weeks, we've witnessed very little change in polling. What small gains there may have been for John McCain have now evaporated (see dead cat bounce). Regular national polls and daily trackers are all now starting to come together for the first time. All of them have the race close to or at double digits. State polling continues to favor Obama as well. 

From our last projection, John McCain loses 14 electoral votes while Barack Obama's score remains unchanged. Polls in North Dakota and Indiana put the race at a dead heat. As a result, both states shift from leans McCain to tossup this week. Voters in North Dakota have been surveyed just three times in October. Obama has led in two of those polls while one other shows the race a tie. Polls back home in Indiana show a close race although Obama has led in three of the last four

Although we're not adding any states to Obama's total, he has strengthened his lead in these states:  New Mexico, Minnesota and Maine. As a result, these states move from leans Obama to solid Obama.  We now show Obama with a solid lead in all of the Kerry/Gore states (264 electoral votes).

McCain's sole route to 270 now runs through Pennsylvania. For him to win there, it will take even more than a game changer. Something along the lines of divine order may be McCain's only hope. The latest polls in the Keystone state show Obama gripping a double digit lead.

No comments: