The Early Ugly in PA

It’s a hectic day at the office today, so I’m not sure how much up to the minute coverage I’ll be able to provide, but we shall overcome.  Right now things in Pennsylvania are as hectic as ever, though the one thing that most seem to agree upon is that there is slim hope that Obama will be able to pull off the miracle upset many of his supporters, as well as many eager to get this primary done and over with, have been hoping for.

Marc Ambinder has some early exit polling results, and they’re about as clear as a mud river on a rainy day.  To Obama’s benefit, voters are choosing “change” over “experience” by nearly two to one, also, Hillary Clinton is seen by more voters as having attacked unfairly compared to Senator Obama.

Still, Clinton apparently won out amongst the fifty-four percent who said the economy is the number one issue, and the thirty-seven percent of gun owners whom one would think would vote Clinton is more than double the new registered voters that one would expect to heavily favor Obama.

Meanwhile, turnout is high, record-breaking high, one of the things that the Politico says could favor Obama in places such as Philadelphia.

So where are we at?  Aside from a PPP poll that was put out earlier today, all other polls have Hillary Clinton winning Pennsylvania by either a high single digit, or a low double digit margin.

I’m not inclined to disagree, though the PPP poll does give one cause for prudence; apparently PPP has an even better track record than SUSA.  Given that they are both very much in disagreement today, one of these two pollsters, each of whom have been building up a solid rep rather quickly, is going to go home with a little egg on their collective faces.

But it does bring up an interesting situation in Pennsylvania; how accurate are the polls?  A theory that has been offered several times including here at Comments is that Obama’s support is getting vastly under polled due to the fact that much of his support tends to get filtered out by likely voter filters.

We will, undoubtedly, know the answer to that conundrum tonight.

As it stands, we’re going to keep our eyes on the ground.  Polls close in just an hour, and obviously the first thing to look at is how quickly news organizations declare a winner.  If it’s in the first ten minutes after polls close, we’re looking at a bad night for Obama.  From there, the longer it takes to call the vote, the worse for Hillary, the better for Obama as this would indicate a close race.

Where do we go from there?  The post Pennsylvania dance has already been scripted.  Any win by Hillary Clinton in the high single digits or in the low double digits is going to be broadcasted as a stirring, come-from-behind, game-changing, victory.  in that same region, look for Team Obama to downplay her victory while pivoting to focus on Indiana and North Carolina.

Of course, none of this seems to hold much regard for the actual math.  Realistically, Hillary Clinton needs to come away with over sixty percent of the popular vote in order to maintain her current status in the mathematics of the race; those mathematics still particularly ugly for her aspirations to become the nominee.

Anything less than that, and the necessary victory margins that she will need in the remaining states will only go up further.  Given that keeping the math where it is now requires her to win by twenty point margins in all remaining states, even in those such as North Carolina where Obama is currently enjoying a high double digit lead.

So remember, both campaigns are going to spin what they spin, but this is the reality on the ground; unless Clinton’s vote totals reach over sixty percent, she ultimately failed to do what she needed to do in the Keystone State.

In any case, we should know one way or another in a matter of hours.  

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