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Something to Keep in Mind in the Last 2 Weeks (IGNORE IF YOU HATE POLITICS ON THE SITE)

Over the next two weeks, you will lots of bluster from people on both sides of the political aisle about who has “the momentum” and who is going to win the Presidential Election. Ignore all of it….whoever you are for, McCain or Obama, in the Electoral College world, polls of the national type are not of a great deal of importance. In fact, at this point the election is rather simple. Absent a nuclear meltdown, Obama has 259 Electoral votes (giving him Michigan, Wisconsin, New Hampshire and Pennsylvania, all states where he has double digit leads) and McCain has 161 Electoral votes (giving him Montana, Georgia, North Dakota and West Virginia). Now some will tell you that all seven states I listed are in play….dont believe them. If Obama loses Pennsylvania or McCain loses any of those states, they are headed for a lot bigger defeat than anyone suspects. Thus those 320 electoral votes can essentially be ignored.

So what does matter. With Obama having 259 votes, he needs 11 more to become President. There is a scenario in which Obama could lose New Hampshire, win New Mexico and Colorado and thus tie McCain…..but that scenario is now fairly remote and we will just ignore it (plus with the House the way it is, it is likely Obama would win in a tie scenario anyway). So here is all you need to follow over the last two weeks. There are nine battleground states, which will decide the election:

Ohio
Florida
Virginia
North Carolina
Indiana
Missouri
Colorado
New Mexico
Nevada

Those are the only states you should care about. In those states, Obama leads in 8, McCain in one (Indiana). Obama’s leads in Virginia and New Mexico are big, but the rest of the states are quite close. For Obama to win he needs to do this:

WIN ONE of these six states:

Ohio
Florida
Virginia
North Carolina
Indiana
Missouri

OR WIN TWO OF THESE STATES:

New Mexico
Colorado
Nevada

That is the scenario. So if you are an Obama fan, you look at those first six states and find a victory. Virginia is the most likely Obama win and Indiana the most likely Obama loss. Obama needs one of those first six….so watch those polls closely. If you are McCain, you basically need a clean sweep. Assuming he doesnt win New Hampshire (which is possible, but wouldnt change a great deal), he needs to basically win all nine of these states, or at least only lose New Mexico, Colorado or Nevada. He is likely to lose New Mexico, so if you are a McCain supporter, you watch the other eight states and hope McCain wins them all.

So there you go….I am a politics dork and I know that is often overwhelming figuring out who will these races. Watch those nine states….none of the rest matter, and if they do, the rout is on for one of the candidates. Have a great night…..

Article written by Matt Jones