Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Your Future?

QandO has an interesting prediction of a McCain/Obama general election showdown.

Here is their electoral map:

I'd say this looks about right, except for South Carolina. I don't think Obama has a prayer there. In 2004 blacks made up 30% of the electorate in the general election. (Exit poll data here.) Now, assuming that McCain would poll among whites similarly to Bush (and I've seen absolutely nothing to make me believe otherwise), and also assuming that Obama would collect 95% of the black vote (a safe assumption I believe), the baseline vote for Obama would be 43.9%. This baseline is better than Kerry did in 2004 as he "only" carried 85% of the black vote. Now, it could be argued that the black vote will be energized by the Obama candidacy and come out in larger numbers. This is true, but when does the weight of the black vote push Obama close enough to 50% to matter?

Well let's see. Using the equation, Obama Vote = (BV*0.95)+((1-BV)*0.22) where BV is equal to the percentage of the black vote you get the following:

% Black Vote: Obama's Total Vote (Predicted)
30% - 43.9%
32% - 45.36%
34% - 46.82%
36% - 48.28%
38% - 49.74%
39% - 50.47%

Obama's problems are twofold: A) It seems unlikely that the percentage of blacks voting in the general election could be increased by a full 30%, and B) All of this assumes that Obama can appeal to whites in South Carolina to the same extent as John Kerry, which given Obama's track record isn't a lead pipe cinch.


Tully said...

Not only is SC wishful thinking, NJ, WI and MI are questionable and perhaps in play. Maybe even OR.

If the nominee is Obama, I don't see a mid-300's EC vote for McCain as being unreachable.

The Iconic Midwesterner said...

I agree about NJ and MI. Not too sure about WI though. Obama does do well with the ideological left, and we got that up here.

Oregon? What makes you think that exactly?

Tully said...

The historical trend. Oregon bottomed out for the GOP in 1992 at a 10-point gap and with a full 24 points to Perot, and has trended back up since. Strong independent middle.

It was within half a point in 2000, went back to 4 points in 2004 with Nader's fade.

In Wisconsin the last two elections have been within half a point, so "in play" is not fantasy. Also a strong indie middle as shown by the Perot vote in '92.

If Obama cannot lock up the "Reagan Democrats" by about 2 to 1, he loses in crucial states that he MUST win. And those are the very votes his team has done such a good job of pissing off with remarks like "clinging to guns and religion." The media's hearty assist in playing up Jacksonians and Reagan Democrats as dumb hicks hasn't helped him.