Beats the Hell outta me. My intuition says Romney will win and it won't be that close. However, whether reality conforms itself to my intuition or not remains to be seen.
Here are the factors that impress me:
1. Romney is tied or slightly ahead or slighly behind Obama in several key states like Ohio, Colorado, Virginia and Florida. Turnout will be the key to victory, and Romney's crowds are large and enthusiastic; Obama's not so much. Only 800 people turned out to hear Joe Biden speak today.
2. All the traditional reasons for picking a winner line up behind Romney: the economy is terrible and Obama hasn't helped; gas prices are sky high, unemployment is not improving. Only the fervently faithful to their Party will vote for Obama.
3. Independents are overwhelmingly for Romney, by double digits. Traditionally, no one wins without winning the independents.
4. Most polls showing Obama ahead are skewed from oversampling Democrats, and are based on the undoubtedly false belief that the Democrat turnout will be the same as in 2008. Most pundits expect it to be substantially lower. The sharp decline in Democrats voting early and the sharp increase in Republicans voting early confirm this impression.
5. Republican registrations are up considerably and Democrat registrations are down. The former have the enthusiasm and the determination to win. They will show up at the polls, whereas many disappointed Democrats will stay home.
6. Undecided voters traditionally go for the challenger, and will go for Romney this time.
Of course, I could be completely wrong. By this time tomorrow, we should know.
Are Southerners Different? - This essay appeared in the 1984 winter issue of Southern Partisan magazine. In the best of all possible worlds, President Reagan, George Will, William Buck...
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