Wed Oct 24, 2012, 12:39 AM
Drunken Irishman (28,417 posts)
The swing states compared to eight years ago.
I feel like I'm a broken record here, but I do think it needs repeating. For the national polls to work out like they are, Obama has to be doing worse in a great deal of every state compared to Kerry eight years ago. I mention this again because Kerry only lost the popular vote by 2.4 points. That margin for Bush was the narrowest of a winning incumbent president since Woodrow Wilson.
Bush also won most of the '04 swing states. Those included:
But it goes beyond just those swing states. Kerry only won Wisconsin by less than a percentage point in 2004. That's about as narrow as you can get and, along with Iowa, was one of the slimmest margins for either candidate. Kerry also had smaller margins in Minnesota, Michigan and Pennsylvania than what Obama is working with right now.
So, it does make you wonder how Obama can be out-polling Kerry and still be down in the popular vote. That doesn't even begin to get into the bigger southern states that were not in play - states like Virginia and North Carolina. I'll show you what I mean a bit later when you compare Bush's margin of victory to Obama's current position in the polls in those states ... which are now considered swing states, though eight years, despite Edwards being on the ticket, weren't really thought of as swing states.
Here's a break down of the final vote totals in '04 compared to the polls today.
As you can see, there are four states Bush carried in '04 (Ohio, Nevada, New Mexico and Iowa) that Obama currently leads in. There is another (Virginia) that is a tie. Colorado, another state Bush won in '04, Obama narrowly loses and some polls have put him ahead there.
That's potentially six Bush states that Obama might carry in '12 ... and that doesn't include Florida or North Carolina.
Out of these states, there is only one state where Kerry's final results were better than Obama is polling currently - Missouri. That was a close state in '08, it's not in '12 ... it's very much similar to where it was eight years ago. Beyond that, though, Obama's margins are better across the board than Kerry.
Now, to further expand on this, let's average out the 2004 swing state polls and the 2012 swing state polls.
In 2004, Bush led in these swing states by an average of 50.70 to 48.39 - a margin of +2.32 for Bush.
In 2012, Obama leads in these swing states by an average of 48.1 to 46.7 - a margin of +1.4 for Obama
So, Bush's margin, with a 2.4 point win, was only .92 more than Obama's currently ... and that includes two states (NC and Virginia) that weren't really considered swing states in '04.
On the whole, though, Obama is out-polling Kerry in the swing states by a margin of 3.72. He's also out-polling him in non-swing states like California, Illinois and New York. That all but makes up for the larger deficits he sees in smaller southern states (he's also doing better in Texas and Georgia and South Carolina than Kerry did in '04).
Further, Kerry's average margin in swing states he won was just 2.2 points. For Obama, it's 4.2 points - a whole two points better than Kerry.
In states Kerry won that Obama is currently leading, Obama's margin increases to 4.26 ... so, Obama is doing two points better than Kerry in swing states he won in '04.
In swing states that Kerry lost and Obama is losing in, Kerry's deficit was 7.3 points. For Obama, it's just 4.5 - three points better than Kerry.
Overall, these numbers point to what I've believed all along: Obama will win the popular vote by 2-3 points nationally.
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