Tuesday, October 26, 2004

ONE WEEK TO THE BIG VOTE

WISCONSIN BIG BATTLEGROUND TODAY

Both George W. Bush and John Kerry spent the day in various parts of Wisconsin. Bush is hoping to overturn a 6000-vote Democrat victory in the presidential race in 2000 there and if he is able to do it, he might be able to win the White House- even if he loses in Ohio or Florida.

By my calculations it all comes down to Ohio and Florida. Kerry really needs both of them. If he gets both then it's almost Mission Impossible for Bush given the current tracking polls. It's too close to call in both those states but Bush is said to have a slight lead, for all that it's worth. But if Kerry is able to steal one of these two states, Bush still has a chance and that is where Wisconsin becomes important.

By my calculations, if all the states break in 2004 the way they went in 2000, then George W. Bush would get 278 electoral votes. That total would include Ohio's 20 electoral votes and Florida's 27. Kerry would basically need to steal either Ohio or Florida to win the presidency. If he steals either one of them, Bush will have to win Wisconsin and an additional "Blue State" to hang onto the White House. He'll need to flip Wisconsin, plus win at least one or more states to make up the shortfall. If Bush carries Florida but loses Ohio, he'll need either Iowa or New Mexico in addition to Wisconsin to make it to 270. If he wins Ohio but loses Florida, he'll need to pick up both Iowa and New Mexico in addition to Wisconsin. And if Bush loses both Ohio and Florida he's in grave difficulty- he'll basically have to also steal another Blue state like Minnesota ( a close race with Kerry thought to be in the lead ) and at least one or two more states- Michigan? Oregon? Tougher than even Minnesota. All this is assuming that Bush holds onto New Hampshire. If he loses New Hampshire he'll need ALL of Wisconsin, Iowa and New Mexico to make up any shortfall if they lose Ohio or Florida. Whew.

Can Bush turn all three of Wisconsin, Iowa and New Mexico into "Red States"? Short answer is YES. Bush leads narrowly in all three states according to the latest tracking (see RealClearPolitics for all the latest polling data), and all three were among the closest races in the country in 2000. When we were all up past midnight watching the returns coming in in 2000, we were waiting for word from Wisconsin, Iowa, Oregon and Florida. So it's doable for Bush- he won't need too many votes to change hands to flip Wisconsin, Iowa and New Mexico. But frankly, it will be a lot easier for Bush to win the White House if he hangs onto traditional familiar Republican territory like Ohio and Florida. Wisconsin may be turning more Republican, but it is still well known for being full of progressives and leftists, and Iowa was a Dukakis state. But Bush stands a chance there anyway. What's helping Bush in Wisconsin is that Nader is going to get a lot of votes.

This could be a case of Wisconsin, Iowa and New Mexico putting the icing on the cake for Bush, but you never know. In any event, Kerry was in Green Bay for a reason- he needs the state. Kerry is also planning a visit to shore up Iowa while Bush is heading to Ohio ( Red state ) and Pennsylvania (Blue state).

BUBBA AGAIN

As predicted a tired-looking Bill Clinton was all over the evening news the other day because of his big appearance with Kerry in Philly. Meanwhile Ashton Kutcher was in Minnesota with John Edwards.

I understand that Angie Harmon was somewhere, supporting Bush. I saw a clip of her on TV. Sometimes it seems like she's the only celebrity supporting Bush.


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