Friday, October 10, 2008

Republicans Must Have Ohio to Win

It ‘s a rule in Presidential politics: Republicans cannot win without Ohio
by Charlie Leck

I’ve got some interesting observations for you – in a moment – but first I can’t resist giving you these zingers from David Letterman’s monologue on Wednesday night this week:

“You know, I like John McCain, but wandering around on stage there, he looked like a retiree who can’t find his Buick.”

“And then there was one kind of unpleasant moment for Barack Obama when that woman jumps up. Did you see that, where the woman jumps up? And Barack Obama is momentarily taken aback. And he said, “All right, look, I told you, ma’am, I already have a running mate. Now please sit down, Hillary”

Well, it’s time to turn our eyes to Ohio. There are reports that McCain’s campaign strategy group is desperately trying to reorganize its approach in Ohio. They know they must somehow win Ohio and Obama has been closing the gap there. Obama is funneling ground workers into every corner of the state and they are giving very heavy attention to the campuses of Ohio’s many colleges and universities.

As Ohio goes, so goes the nation! Well, not exactly. The Democrats can win the election without Ohio. The Republicans cannot. It’s a rule. They must have Ohio.

So, the GOP will do almost anything to win Ohio. There’s an element in the party that will even steal votes, destroy votes and manufacture votes in Ohio in order to win. The Dems are supposed to have a strategy to watch over such cheating this year. Let’s hope so.

We all saw some pretty dramatic scenes of anger at a couple of McCain campaign rallies the other night – folks in the crowd, rising to scream at McCain, begging him to get tougher and harsher in his campaign against Obama. This, I am sure, was all staged stuff. McCain is going to turn to dirty campaigning now, because he is desperate. This will be his excuse: “The people demanded it! I’m just responding to the people!” Whatever! McCain will now begin appealing to the lowest element in the voting public. It won’t be helpful to the nation, but McCain knows he must win Ohio and it is lost if he doesn’t get down in the mud.

Here's where the major polling organizations (and companies) are standing on Ohio right now:

ARG (American Research Group)
Yesterday (9 October), ARG polling results show Obama is up by 3 points in Ohio.

Rasmussen Report
As of this morning, this highly respected polling company has McCain ahead by a single percentage point in Ohio. That’s within the two-point margin of error and so the state is considered dead-even. Two weeks ago, in the Rasmussen Report, McCain led by 4 points – outside the error margin. Rasmussen and FOX News are the only two polling organizations showing McCain with a lead and both are in that margin of error territory.

Gallup Poll
This great-granddaddy of the polling business shows Obama steadily pulling away from McCain nationally (right now 51% to 42%) but shows Ohio as a virtual tie.

Washington Post and ABC Opinion Poll
has a shocker because it reports Obama is up by 6 points! However, this polling organization says that 20% of Ohio’s likely voters are “moveable” to the other side. That indicates that Ohio is incredibly volatile.

has Obama up by 3% points.

The Columbus Dispatch
statewide polls show Obama up by 7 points. I like local newspaper polls and find them quite thorough and usually accurate.

Public Policy Polling
has Obama up by 6 points.

You can see and feel, from these numbers, the desperation McCain’s organization must feel. The very dependable CNN/Time poll report will likely be coming in on Friday or Saturday. That one will tell us a lot.

Most polling organizations are now conceding that there is a large segment of the population that is outside the polling the numbers. They are America’s young, without permanent connections in terms of addresses and phone numbers. That segment is overwhelmingly in favor of Obama. Will they vote? Who knows!

My favorite place to go, to keep up on the state-by-state polls of all these organizations, is Real Clear Politics. Give them a try if you want to keep an eye on things. If you go often, be sure to refresh your page each time, when you get there.

While you're at Real Clear Politics take a look at Florida. Only the poll surveys by the Florida Chamber of Commerce and Survey USA have McCain ahead. All the other polling organizations show Obama with a lead from 2 to 4 percent.

Polling numbers in Minnesota show Obama ahead anywhere from 1 to 14 percent. It appears he has about an 8 point lead.

No polling organization has Obama behind anymore in Colorado. The reputable organizations shows Obama with a 4 to 6 point lead. This would be a huge state for Obama to win.

Only ARG has McCain with a lead and that's only 1 point. The rest of the pollers have Obama ahead by 4 to 6 points.

Oregon and Washington
Both of these key states have moved to "off-the-chart" status for Obama.

26 Days
McCain will need to perform wonders in the next 26 days to pull this one out. There is only one way for them to go. Attack! Attack! Attack! Be prepared for one of the dirtiest periods of politics in America history -- low down and rotten!

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