The Election is all about the letter O

According to Nate Silver of the Five Thirty Eight blog, President Obama’s likelihood of winning these battleground states are as follows:

Ohio – 73.4%

Colorado – 52.2%

Iowa – 66.5%

North Carolina – 16.1%

Mike Allen of Politco argues that the President only needs to win a couple of the toss up states to win the election, whereas Mitt Romney needs to win practically all of them. And the math looks good for the President in some key swing states.  And do you know why?  I’ll tell you why – the letter O.  Check it out.  The most significant states where Obama has an edge all have one or more 0’s in them except North Carolina which also has two Romney r’s in it.

If I were advising the President, I would tell him and his team to double down on states that contain multiple instances of the letter o and that would be Ohio and Colorado.  No need to mess with any of the others.  Nevada, who cares – Florida has 1 r and 1 o, so it’s not worth the trouble, plus Paul Ryan’s mother lives down there which means team Romney has a built in advantage in the retirement state.

And what should the President focus on in his campaign in Ohio? I would say the AutO bailOut and OldsmObile (do they still make those?) and POntiac (they still make those, right?).  And even though I think clean coal is a joke, clean cOal features the letter o, so why not?  In Colorado, the President should talk about restoring the BuffalO population, and federal subsidies for snOw resOrts and shovel ready jobs for digging up gOld.  This would be a patriotic pitch – Uncle Sam wants you to dig for gOld to help the country dig its way out of debt.  And the President could announce a new program to bottle clean rarified Colorado air to sell abroad to countries like MexicO, HOnduras, COsta Rica, MOrOccO and Oman.

The election is going to come down to the letter O.  You watch.

Wisconsin Once Blue Now Red?

Wisconsin is a blue state, right?  The beer and cheese state whose official motto is “forward” which is the same as President Obama’s campaign slogan should be a blue state.  Wisconsin voted Democrat in the last three presidential elections and gave then Senator Obama a 13.9% margin of victory in 2008, although it should be pointed out that in  2004 and 2000, Kerry and Gore narrowly won the state.  Obama turned it true blue.  But it’s a toss up state now.  The latest polls give the President a slight edge in the badger state.  What happened?

For one, Governor Scott  Walker who gave the unions a crushing blow has become a national figure and hero to the anti-union “right to work” proponents.  Secondly, as you no doubt must be aware, Congressman Ryan hails from Wisconsin.  With their high profile status in the GOP, it should come as no surprise that Romney has gained support in the state.

But can Ryan deliver the state?  If he can’t, that should tell you something about his leadership.  After all, two of the weakest VP running mates in the history of elections, Sarah Palin and Dan Quayle successfully delivered their home states to McCain and Bush the Elder respectively.

Here’s my prediction.  If the Brewers finish the season above .500 and the Packers and the Wisconsin Badgers have a winning record by election day, and campaign workers provide free beer and cheese samples to voters, maybe some Old Milwaukee’s Best and Swiss, the GOP has a shot of Winning Wisconsin.   They do.

Advice For DEMS On Swing State Strategy

I’m going to give the Democrats some free strategic advice.  Listen up now.

Focus on the Midwestern swing states + 1.  Concentrate campaign resources in Ohio, Michigan, and Wisconsin plus Nevada, which is a state for real swingers.  According to polling by Real Clear Politics, Obama/Biden could have as many as 221 electoral votes from states that are  currently leaning or likely to vote for the ticket.  There are some 126 electoral votes up for grabs in Swing States that include Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia and Wisconsin.  The 3 state Midwest strategy plus Harry Reid’s wild west Nevada, would yield 50 electoral votes, one vote over the 270 threshold.

Counter voter ID laws in the swing states by getting out information to voters on how to get an ID if they don’t have one.  And do it now, because it may take up to 60 days for some to get the needed documents to get a photo ID or the required ID.  Florida, Michigan, and New Hampshire require photo ID to vote.  Colorado, Ohio and Virginia require some form of ID, but not a photo.  Pennsylvania leans toward Obama/Biden, but does have a photo ID law, so it is important for Quaker Staters to photo up.  Worst case, voters should know that they may be allowed to cast a provisional ballot even if they don’t have a required ID provided they can supply it within a few days after the election.

Florida and North Carolina are close and if Team Obama wins either, it may be all over for Team Romney, but the odds are less favorable to Democrats there than in other places.  I’d make Romney/Ryan work hard in these “right to work” states to divert away some GOP campaign resources from the Midwest.

In all the battleground states, turning out the base is key.  Democrats, please don’t pander to the Independents and let them co-opt the election.  And to the good folks from the great state of Iowa with your 6 electoral votes, I’m sorry, you’ve had your fun, vote as you like, but don’t expect to bask in the glory of swing statedom.  You had your caucus and lots of media attention. And yes, I am impressed that a debate team from Iowa City West High School won the 2012 National High School Debate Tournament of Champions (TOC) which is worth a shout out, and certainly reason for you to support a candidate who supports high school activities like speech, drama, theater and debate…but Iowa, the elections will be won or lost in states around you.

Same goes for you New Hampshire with your 6.  You had your caucus.  You may be Independent, but you remember Mitt – you do!


The Real Swing States

A report in the New York Times suggests that there are 9 swing states in play in the U.S. Presidential election – that’s a lot of swinging!  The states are as follows: Colorado, Florida, Iowa, North Carolina, New Hampshire, Nevada Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virgina.  As a result, these swinging states have gotten a lot of political action lately.  But are they really swing states?

The answer is technically, no. Benny Goodman, the King of Swing was from Chicago.  One could argue that Chicago was the birthplace of swing, although its roots are New Orleans, where all of American music originated. And Count Basie, one of the great Big Band leaders, grew up in New Jersey, paid his dues in Harlem and formed his Count Basie Orchestra in Kansas City.  Therefore, the real swing states are Missouri and Illinois, linked to New Orleans via the mighty Mississippi River.

Of the 9 states, only Nevada could qualify as a true swing state, because it really is the place where all the swingers end up.  Just ask Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice.