Monday, November 05, 2012

Election Projection

Is it time for the election already? It seemed like only yesterday we were watching the Republican primary debates and caring what people in Iowa and New Hampshire think. Too bad the campaign can’t go for a few more month, right? Yes, I’m kidding. No matter what happens on Tuesday, I think Americans of all political persuasions will be happy to get the 2012 presidential campaign behind us and move on to other things. Like who’s going to run in 2016…

So now let’s get down to predicting making a wild ass guess about what’s going to happen tomorrow.

MN House and Senate: A few months ago, I was sure that the Minnesota GOP was in danger of losing their majorities in both the Minnesota House and Senate. Now, I’m not sure anymore. Trying to analyze this on a race by race basis is something that I have neither the expertise nor inclination to pursue. So instead, I’ll rely on the wisdom of Mitch Berg and go along with his conclusion that we’re likely to see the GOP still in control of both chambers after Tuesday.

Voter ID Ballot Initiative: This one is pretty a no brainer. Voter ID will pass, the only question is by how much. I’m going to go with 61%.

Marriage Ballot Initiative: A much tougher call here. Opponents of the measure have spent a ton of money trying to defeat it and if you judged the outcome based on the number of “Vote No” signs you see in the Twin Cities, it would seemed doomed to fail. And polls indicate that support is not above the 50% threshold needed for it to pass. However, this is an issue where the way people say they’re going to vote and the way they actually vote don’t always coincide. It’s going to be close, but I think marriage amendment will pass. Barely.

MN CD1: This would seem like a district that Republicans should be able to make a race of against incumbent Democrat Tim Walz who tries to portray himself as a moderate in spite of a rather liberal voting record. But the GOP hasn’t been able to in the past and won’t this year either. Walz wins reelection.

MN CD2: After redistricting, these was some thought that John Kline could be vulnerable with a more Democratic district. But Republicans have nothing to worry as Kline cruises to another comfortable win.

MN CD3: Remember some people called the Third a “purple” district? Looks pretty red this year as Eric Paulsen wins easy.

MN CD4: Sigh. Betty McCollum in a cake walk. Again.

MN CD5: Double sigh. I’m not sure what Keith Ellison would have to do to lose an election in the Fifth, but it would have to epic scandal. In the absence of said scandal, Ellison can be assured of reelection every two years even when facing a worthy challenger as he is with Chris Fields this year.

MN CD6: After her failed presidential bid, there was speculation that Michele Bachmann would not seek reelection to her newly redistricted House seat. And after she announced that she would and Jim Graves won the Democratic endorsement to challenge her, there has been speculation that could lose. That’s not likely to happen as she should win by 4-5%.

MN CD7: Collin Peterson reelected.

MN CD8: The Eighth is the most closely contested Minnesota Congressional race and the toughest to call. I have a hunch that Chip Cravaack will hold on against DFL challenger Rick Nolan, but it will be tight.

MN US Senate: Amy Klobuchar is a perfect candidate for Minnesota. She’s managed to create an image as friendly and folksy person and practical and pragmatic politician despite having a voting record that only a true liberal could love. I’m not sure if any GOP challenger could have given Klobuchar a real race, but Kurt Bills never had a chance. Even if Romney makes Minnesota close and down ticket Republicans do well, the Senate race is going to be a blowout. Klobuchar will win by 15% maybe even 20%.

President: For some time now, I’ve believed that Mitt Romney would win the presidency. And I’ve clung to that belief despite the ups and downs of the campaign. I outlined the main reasons Why Romney Will Win in September and hold to them today.

I took at stab at estimating what the electoral college will look like in a WSJ contest. I gave Romney most of the potential battleground states, but none of the potential ‘stache shavers of Pennsylvania, Michigan, or Minnesota. As I’ve said before, if Romney wins Minnesota it means it’s a landslide election and I still don’t see that. My final tally is:

Romney 295
Obama 243

We’ll know soon enough.

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