President Controls the Big States in 2012 Vote

Former Chamber colleague Michael Davis shared this election follow-up recently:

In the 2012 election, 20 states recorded at least 2.5 million votes for president.  President Obama won 15 states while Governor Mitt Romney won 5 states.
Here are the 15 states Obama won (for a total of 276 electoral votes) in order of total ballots cast:  California, Florida, New York, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Illinois, Michigan, Virginia, New Jersey, Massachusetts, Washington, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Maryland and Colorado.
Here are the 5 states Romney won (for a total of 90 electoral votes):  Texas, North Carolina, Georgia, Missouri and Indiana.

Voting on the Colts and Candidates

Based on a 1-2 start, the Indianapolis Colts are on track to win five games in the 2012 season. As the season kicked off, we asked for your prediction on the number of victories in the post-Peyton Manning era. The most popular answer matches the current pace.

  • 4-5 wins: 47%
  • 6-7 wins: 28%
  • 8 or more wins: 17%
  • 3 or fewer wins: 8%

Of course, the 1-2 should be 2-1 (an 80-yard TD allowed in the final two minutes against Jacksonville was unforgivable). The continued improvement of Andrew Luck, injuries and so many other factors will determine the ultimate outcome.

Our new question returns to politics. Tell us (upper right) what result you most look forward to seeing on November 6.

Revising the Electoral College: Time for a Change?

I, and many others it’s safe to say, are not in the habit of seeing something happen in California and wondering if that might be a good idea for the rest of the country. I’m not going to go that far here either, but at least this California development is worthy of debate.

Governor Jerry Brown has made his state the ninth (I honestly don’t know who the other eight are other than a reference to all being "solidly blue") to strive to change the way the president of the United States is elected. The group, now representing 132 electoral votes, wants to award those electoral votes to the candidate who earns the most votes at the ballot box nationwide.

A couple of law professors have spearheaded the initiative, which apparently has been around for nearly a decade. There is some credence to the fact that a small number of swing states seemingly hold a level of power far exceeding what would be expected. You can put Ohio, Florida, Pennsylvania and a few others (Iowa and New Hampshire at this time of the year) in that mix.

But maybe it’s just the biggest of the big — California, New York, Texas, etc. — complaining because they get little attention during the campaigns. And then there is the Indiana scenario, relatively forgotten based on its late primary date and consistent GOP backing until the spotlight shined brightly in both the spring and fall of 2008.

Does this measure give every state a real voice, as the supporters say? Check out the full story and let us know what you think.

President’s Toughest Repeats in 2012

Remember back three years, if you will, and Indiana’s prominent role in the presidential election. First, there was the Barack Obama-Hillary Clinton primary contest in early May that had the nation’s attention. Then, our early poll closing had many in November watching closely for the start of a trend (that did play out) when Obama defeated Republican opponent John McCain.

Obama actually won 365 electoral votes in 2008. It’s certainly too early to tell whether the president wins re-election. Far more certain is, barring a total GOP meltdown, that the 365 total will not be approached. In fact, the National Journal Daily consulted with veteran political strategists from both sides to determine the states "toughest for Obama to hang on to."

Indiana leads the way. Here are a few excerpts from that article:

1. Indiana (11 electoral votes). That the president’s advisers are privately downplaying their chances of recapturing the traditional GOP stronghold—and talking up, instead, his chances in other longer-shot states like Arizona and Georgia—is a clear sign the Hoosier State is looking out of reach.

2. North Carolina (15 electoral votes). The Democratic convention is being held in Charlotte, which should excite the home-state base. But underneath those encouraging indicators are telltale signs that recapturing North Carolina is easier said than done. Obama won the state by a razor-thin, 14,000-vote margin in 2008, thanks to record black and youth turnout. With unemployment at 9.7 percent and the recession disproportionately affecting those groups, it’s hard to foresee that same level of enthusiasm again.

3. Florida (29 electoral votes). The Sunshine State’s 10.7 percent unemployment rate is the nation’s fourth highest. Little has improved economically since the 2010 midterms, when Democrats lost the governor and Senate contests, and saw four Democratic House seats flip to the GOP. For a president who won Florida by just a three-point margin in 2008, that’s not a recipe for success.

4. Ohio (18 electoral votes). Talk to enough Democratic strategists who have worked in the Buckeye State and you’ll inevitably hear anxiety about the president’s standing here. Obama has visited Ohio more than any other battleground state since being elected, but it hasn’t made much of a difference in his poll numbers. Obama’s message that the economy has been turning a corner has been off key with a blue-collar electorate that hasn’t been feeling much of a recovery.

Nevada (6 electoral votes) is also on the list. Honorable mention: Other states that Obama will have to work hard to hang onto include: 6) Virginia (13 electoral votes) ; 7) Pennsylvania (20 electoral votes);   8) Colorado (9 electoral votes) ; 9) New Hampshire (4 electoral votes); 10) Iowa (6 electoral votes).