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Despite the McCain campaign’s insistance on making this election one of character assassination, the electoral map continues to move against him.  I was a little shocked this morning to see the following map at Pollster which has been, up until now, one of the more conservative (small, statistics based c) models of the election.

The two key states to look at are Florida and Ohio which are both now in the “lean Obama” category, and on their own account for forty-seven electoral votes.  Nor is it likely that McCain’s character assassination attempts will help him much in these two states.  In Florida, the key demographics are the elderly and the Jewish, both blocs one would think are naturally more friendly towards McCain.  However, McCain’s economic policies, particularly in regards to Social Security privatization, and his desire to pay for his healthcare plan by slashing Medicare and Medicaid are likely to be viewed unfavorably in the Sunshine State.

Ohio, on the other hand, is smack dab in the middle of the rustbelt, and therefore one of the hardest states hit by the economic mismanagement of the current administration.  Given that the economy is not likely to improve before November 4th, you can rest assured that people are going to be focusing on that more and more as election day approaches.

Another point I want to make because I see it an awful lot in comments sections is the fallacy that Kerry led Bush in the polling in the run up to the 2004 election.  This is typically in line with Democratic electoral naysaying, the familiar argument being, “Yeah, but Kerry Led Bush this far out and look how well that went.”

The problem is, as Oliver Willis points out, that’s simply not true.

 

Currently, Obama has at a minimum a six point lead over McCain at the end of the first week of October.  By contrast, Bush’s lead over Kerry at that point was only two points and he still managed to hang on through the month to win the election.

Obama is starting out with a more politically favorable environment, and with a much stronger lead.  Further, McCain’s attempts at character assassination are in general being reported not with the kind of full throated echo chamber quality from the mainstream media that he needed, but instead with skepticism and with the oft added caveat that this is a campaign in desperation mode.

Shorter, Obama remains in an excellent position to win, and I don’t think that the recent ugly attacks from the McCain campaign are going to be enough to change that.

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