Following closely on Ohio’s heals is what many would argue is the second-most important state for the election. Should Romney (or Obama for that matter) prevail in Ohio, then all eyes would likely turn towards Colorado. (Remember, the electoral math shows two likely routes to victory for Romney: either (1) win Ohio and one other state, OR (2) lose Ohio and sweep New Hampshire, Iowa, Colorado, and Nevada.) .
Right now, the indication is that Romney is leading in many of these states, so while it’s a small margin for error, it is certainly within reach. Colorado has been stubborn to the Obama campaign: even when polls (many would argue were “skewed”) were trending towards Obama before his disastrous debate performance, Colorado maintained a steady support level for Romney. It seems like that trend is likely to continue:
Exactly 270 electoral votes are needed to win the presidency. And that win may well come down to Colorado – specifically, Jefferson and Arapahoe counties.
Both are at the center of the 7th U.S. Congressional District race between incumbent Ed Perlmutter, a Democrat, and his challenger, Republican Joe Coors.
If businessman Coors has a good election night on Nov. 6, then so will Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, not only in Colorado but likely nationwide.
Colorado is looking like a state that is the national average, perhaps a tick or two rightward, according to Sean Trende, a savvy number-cruncher and Princeton-trained political scientist for the website RealClearPolitics.
“So if Romney is winning Colorado, it probably means he is headed for a decent night,” Trende said of the relatively new electoral trend of a Western state signaling a presidential win.
If Romney wins here comfortably, that probably means a national win on the scale of George Bush in 2004, or even Obama in 2008, Trende said.
Right now, he said, Colorado’s numbers look pretty good for Romney: “We have him up a half-point in the RCP Average, with the president down to about 47 percent of the vote. That’s not a great position for the president to be in.”
I don’t know how he finds the time (or the information), but Keith Backer from www.battlegroundwatch.com put together another stellar analysis about some of the early positive indications coming in from early voting. This is echoed by the Washington Post. Bear in mind, the actual voting isn’t announced until the tally is counted on election night, however, campaigns and political insiders are often able to get a sense of the trajectory of the race by looking at the party affiliation of the people submitting the ballots. Here’s a clip from the Washington Post’s story:
Among the 29,400 voters who have cast absentee ballots in North Carolina, 54 percent are registered Republicans and 28 percent are Democrats, according to the United States Elections Project at George Mason University.
It’s a small sample — more than 2.6 million people voted before Election Day in North Carolina in 2008. And these are all mail ballots, which have historically favored Republicans; in-person voting starts Oct. 18 in North Carolina. Nevertheless, Republicans are encouraged because McCain lost the state’s early vote by 11 percentage points.
“North Carolina was a place that they totally caught us flat-footed in 2008,” Beeson said. “They jumped out to a lead and never looked back. You don’t see that happening this time — Republicans have the lead.”
Florida’s sample is even smaller — only 14,500 votes so far — but it too favors Republicans over Democrats, 53 percent to 32 percent. In 2008, nearly 4.6 million voters in Florida cast ballots before Election Day.
Democrats have a big lead in Iowa — as they did in the past two presidential elections. About 60 percent of the 127,100 voters who have cast absentee ballots so far were registered Democrats. Twenty-two percent were Republicans and 18 percent were unaffiliated, according to the United States Elections Project.
Note that in Iowa, this type of trend is typical. In 2004, when Bush eventually carried the state, Democrats leaped out of the blocks early as well and built an initial lead before the GOP came back and prevailed on election day. Iowa is still crucial, however, and Romney is making strides in blunting that advantage. Check out this link from the Free Republic.