The Right Coast

October 30, 2004
More electoral college madness!
By Tom Smith

Here's what you can do: open two browser windows, and put one the RCP electoral college projections and the other on the tradesports state lines. (click on any state on the home page.) This gives you a pretty good idea what we are looking at.

Bush still needs 38 electoral votes if you give him NM, 43 if you do not. Let's not: more conservative and NM really is corrupt. Tradesports gives W a 55 percent chance in NM, but let's discount that. If enchanted ballot boxes don't disappear, well and good. Where does W get 43 votes? He has to get FL with 27, and probably will. If he doesn't he's dead. Tradesports gives him about a 60 probability, and has for 2 weeks at least. That leaves 16 votes to get. Where? Ohio is a possibility but I doubt it. Tradesports has him at around 49 there, which seems right to me. I take PA and MN are Kerry as well. What about Iowa and Wisconsin? Barely for Bush, with 17 votes between them. Just enough.

So W is still the favorite. The above is conservative because I leave out NM and OH for Bush. Either could happen. In fact NM is now at about 58 on tradesports. Maybe the market knows something I don't. Hmmmm. And Ohio has jumped up 3 points to right around 50. Thanks, OBL. The overall line for Bush is about 55, which seems about right. IEM is at 57. So call it 56.

UPDATE: Interesting phone call from my brother Steve in HI. He says the island state may really be in play, contrary to the CW. New polls showing an even split are accurate, he believes. What's doing it are the Philippinos, very devout Catholics and a substantial minority of the population. Also, they tend to be closed mouthed about politics to outsiders, so polls may be underrepresenting them. Cheney is on his way to HI, so GOP internals must show it really is in play.

AND Holy Kachina, Batman! NM just jumped on tradesports by 16 points! WTH is that about! Now there's a huge spread. Does somebody know something? New poll just out? Maybe W does have a shot in the land of coyotes and trendy cuisine. Maybe it's some weird, spiritual thing. I'll throw my bones and let you know.