I wouldn’t want to sound too optimistic about the presidential election. After all, what kind of Democrat would that make me? But I will say that a piece yesterday by Mark Halperin gave me some reason for hope. Based on interviews with senior campaign staff, Halperin had this to say, in part:
Chicago remains sufficiently funded and emboldened by its own polling to compete for the final two weeks in all nine of the battlegrounds: Florida, North Carolina, and Virginia in the South; New Hampshire in the North; Iowa, Ohio, and Wisconsin in the Midwest; and Nevada and Colorado in the West. As they have in the past, Obama campaign officials say they expect to win a high percentage of those states and conceivably could sweep all nine.
When pressed, the Obama officials with whom I met said that five of the nine stand out: Nevada, Ohio, Wisconsin, Iowa, and New Hampshire. In that quintet, Democrats believe the combination of their current leads in polling, early voting (where applicable), and ground game makes their chances of winning even greater there than in the other four. And given the Electoral College math, unless Romney picks off one or more of those five states, Obama would win a minimum of 281 electoral votes and re-election.
Current leads in the polls in swing states, early voting, and ground game. To this I would add what I think is undersampling of the Hispanic vote in polling in some key states.
It is a very interesting article by Halperin. I recommend it. And as for my level of optimism about the outcome, I’m actually feeling fine.
(Cross-posted at Lippmann’s Ghost.)