Building on data from, four days ago ran a article by Alan Abramowitz, Thomas E. Mann, and Larry J. Sabato called “The Myth of a Toss-Up Election.” It basically said that the electoral total from states that are strong or leaning for Barack Obama is 287, the electoral total from states strong or leaning for John McCain is 147 and the electoral total from the remaining swing states is 107. Their point is that Obama can lose every swing state out there and still win, 287 to 253.
“‘Too close to call.’ ‘Within the margin of error.’ ‘A statistical dead heat,'” the article begins. “If you’ve been following news coverage of the 2008 presidential election, you’re probably familiar with these phrases. Media commentary on the presidential horserace, reflecting the results of a series of new national polls, has strained to make a case for a hotly contested election that is essentially up for grabs.
“Signs of Barack Obama’s weaknesses allegedly abound. The huge generic Democratic Party advantage is not reflected in the McCain-Obama pairings in national polls. Why, according to the constant refrain, hasn’t Obama put this election away? A large number of Clinton supporters in the primaries refuse to commit to Obama ((i.e., PUMAs). White working class and senior voters tilt decidedly to McCain. Racial resentment limits Obama’s support among these two critical voting blocs. Enthusiasm among young voters and African-Americans, two groups strongly attracted to Obama, is waning. Blah, blah, blah.
“While no election outcome is guaranteed and McCain’s prospects could improve over the next three and a half months, virtually all of the evidence that we have reviewed — historical patterns, structural features of this election cycle, and national and state polls conducted over the last several months — point to a comfortable Obama/Democratic party victory in November.
“Trumpeting this race as a toss-up, almost certain to produce another nail-biter finish, distorts the evidence and does a disservice to readers and viewers who rely upon such punditry. Again, maybe conditions will change in McCain’s favor, and if they do, they should also be accurately described by the media. But current data do not justify calling this election a toss-up.”
Except the PUMAs do seem to be holding back, the racial chasm in this country is wide and deep, the conservative-value bubbas are just as stupid and clueless as they’ve ever been, and don’t forget Jake Tusing and Colin Clemens, those two guys from American Teen who say they won’t be voting because politics is not for them. How many tens of thousands of under-25s who think this way are out there, sitting on their hands? A lot, I’ll bet.