Saturday, November 01, 2008

Changes or Momentary Blips?

George Will provides a list of interesting states to watch on Tuesday evening:

Eleven states with 63 electoral votes have not voted Democratic in the 10 elections since 1964: Alaska, Utah, Wyoming, Idaho, North Dakota, South Dakota, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, Indiana and Virginia. On election eve, Obama is competitive in Virginia and Indiana, which Bush carried in 2004 by margins of 8.2 and 20.7 percentage points, respectively. In Nebraska, which is one of two states (Maine is the other) that allocate an electoral vote to the candidate who carries each congressional district, Obama might win the 2nd District (Omaha). In 2004, George W. Bush beat John Kerry there by 22 percentage points.

Seven states with 60 electoral votes have voted Democratic only once since 1964: North Carolina, South Carolina, Alabama, Mississippi, Montana, Colorado and Arizona. It will not be startling if Obama carries two -- Colorado and North Carolina. In 2004, Bush carried them by 4.7 and 12.4 percentage points, respectively.

It will be especially interesting to see how pundits analyze Colorado if that state's voters on the same day: 1) Vote in the majority for Barack Obama; and 2) Approve a ballot measure aimed at banning racial preferences in various contexts.

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