Friday, September 19, 2008

My Take: Some Election What-Ifs

I. Could Barack Obama lose Florida and Ohio and still win the election?

Yes. I think it's very possible. See scenario below. (As always, click to embiggen the map.)

This puts Obama with 274 electoral votes, four more than needed for victory. This is good news, I think, for those of us with legitimate worries regarding both these states. Recall the Florida shenanigans of 2000 (which cost Gore the election) and the Ohio shenanigans of 2004 (which probably cost John Kerry the election). Hours-long voting lines ... uncounted ballots ... malfunctioning voting machines ... improper purging of voters lists. Fie on election officials in both these states! And in a razor-thin election, like both 2000 and 2004, these things are unconscionable.

II. Could Barack Obama lose the electoral vote count and still win the election?

Yes. See below scenario in which McCain gets 267 (to Obama's 264) but doesn't reach the 270 electoral votes to win.

What happens then? The race is kicked to the U.S. House of Representaives, where Democrats should still have the majority. Result: President Barack Obama. (Fun Fact: If you read The Federalist papers, you'll discover that the Founding Fathers pretty much assumed that no candidate would ever win the election in the electoral college and that all presidential elections would normally be decided in the house. What they didn't see coming was the emergence and dominance of American political parties, which they called "factions." The Founders hated "factions."

III. Will this be a close election?

Despite the scary "McCain is leading" poll numbers in recent weeks, I still think if Obama wins, he wins in a landslide, with Bill Clinton-like electoral numbers, as pictured in the below map, wihch is my official PREDICTION MAP. ( still has Obama losing the electoral college as of today, based on polling.)

And if McCain or Palin really mess up in a debate or two, and if John McCain still keeps acting like this, and Palin keeps making "window into her soul" gaffes like this, then Missouri and North Carolina and Indiana might turn, too.

Keep hope alive, mis amigos.

(Maps generated using the map generator.)

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