Russert Predicts the Electoral Map

On the Today show on Thursday, Tim Russert broke out the dry erase board to suggest what the electoral map might look like in November. If Barack Obama is the Democratic nominee, Russert thinks he starts with a base of 168 Electoral College votes and has 42 within reach, while John McCain begins with 135 and has 81 leaning his way. That equals 210 for Obama and 216 for McCain before 10 battleground states are decided.

If Hillary Clinton is the nominee, Russert predicts she would have a base of 172 votes and have 42 within reach while McCain would begin with 174 and could grab another 47. That’s 216 for Hillary and 221 for McCain with seven battleground states as toss-ups.

The scenarios suggest that an Obama-McCain race would be a much more dynamic, national campaign and that a Hillary-McCain battle would resemble the trench warfare contests that we saw in 2000 and 2004. Obama has the opportunity to expand the map but Hillary starts with more anchors — in other words, her floor is higher; his ceiling in higher.

Russert thinks that Obama would be a stronger Democratic candidate in Colorado (9), Georgia (15), Mississippi (6), Missouri (11), Montana (3), Nevada (5), North Carolina (15), Virginia (13) and Washington (11), and generally throughout the South, mid-Atlantic and West. Russert suggests that Clinton would be a stronger nominee in Arkansas (6), Florida (27) and New Jersey (15), which are all states where the Clinton brand is strong.

What do you think?

Russert: Barack Obama vs. John McCain Electoral Map (Today)

Barack Obama vs. John McCain Electoral Map

Russert: Hillary Clinton vs. John McCain Electoral Map (Today)

Hillary Clinton vs. John McCain Electoral

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14 responses to “Russert Predicts the Electoral Map

  1. After much research, I believe Obama is hiding something.
    Last year he kept pushing Hillary to supply records yet
    he has provided very little. Obama evades answering questions and uses every opportunity to go on a spin
    soliloquy. He is a great orator but he has left a lot
    of questions unanswered and has lied or misled on others.
    I believe that a major revelation about Obama’s past will
    surface in the next few months.
    I also believe the election dynamics will change soon.

  2. As with the commenter above, I do agree that there are more things to be learned about Obama. The question is, if he’s the nominee, will McCain shy away?

    As for the electoral maps, I’d agree with Hillary’s strengths in AR and NJ. I also think she’d have a good shot in WV. FL, though, I disagree, as I think the state is trending conservative.

    In an Obama matchup, I think McCain could take NH and possibly PA. On the other hand, Obama could take the bigger prizes of OH, NC, and VA.

  3. huntingdonpost

    I love Tim Russert and think he does brilliant mapping. I believe Hillary Clinton is stronger electorally. I also do not think Obama has been vetted. MSNBC is partly responsible for this, because they insist on a love-fest with him, instead of asking him the hard questions. He’s evasive. All of the news stations pummel Clinton, but that won’t change, so I think her base is strong. They won’t waiver. We have no idea about Obama’s base. Will they even show up to vote or will they just blog and take polls?

  4. Pingback: Tim Russert Is A Pretty Smart Guy « iapprovedthismessage.com

  5. sharonann tomal

    I believe that vs Obama, McCain will take Florida, N. Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Texas, Michigan and Ohio. Essentially a blow out. If he’s up against Clinton, I still think he will win, however, he will lose Ohio but barely win Florida and Pennsylvania. Texas and Michigan are shoe-ins for McCain.

  6. Pingback: Where, Exactly, Would Obama Expand the Electoral Map? « The Electoral Map

  7. Pearl Mitchell

    Tim, This is 2008 and America is still a very racist place.

  8. I honestly think you need a total black electorate of at least 20% to give Obama a realsitic chance of taking traditional Republican states. EG NC. Va is probabalby out of reach b/c of McCain strong ties to to the No Va defense establishment that will blunt Obama’s racial appeal. PA may be his best shot, I think NJ is at best a tag a long from it and not a leading indicator, but you never know.

  9. sharonann tomal

    In response to Pearl Mitchell’s comment about the racism she sees in alluding to a loss for Obama, I suppose if I were in her shoes, I would delude myself into coming up with excuses as to why my candidate lost. A reality check would be as simple as this: with all the things apparently being seen as going wrong in this election cycle, presumably, any democratic candidate should breeze through a general election, however we know that isn’t the case. Why? simple–Obama is just too liberal-his record, unlike opinions on racial and gender bias, speaks for itself. No matter how one chooses to spin the “so-called “bias” people may have, we just can’t spin facts–most people (thank God) in this country are right-leaning when it comes to morals–(they don’t believe in abortion on demand, withholding drugs for unborns who survive botched abortions, (Obama voted for this withholding of drugs so that the baby could die), they love their country and will die to defend it. They believe that people, not government, have the right to choose how they would defend themselves against intruders, etc. (gun-rights), while they love and respect animals and the environment, they don’t put them above people (the way liberals do) finally, and perhaps most importantly to this election, they truly want someone who can and has shown that they can reach out to the other side–something Obama has never done and I don’t believe is capable of.

  10. Ugh, why is this site dominated by RepubliCONs?

  11. How can anyone honestly predict an electoral map in flux at this point??? This thing isn’t going to harden until late summer or early fall..

  12. I do like the maps – That WAS the question, correct?
    I agree that Obama-McCain matchup will expand the field of play. The New West vs. the Appalachian/Ozark spine. It will be interesting to watch some of my older relatives and the comments they make over the course of the campaign. Can’t wait to call them out on some of the nasty hateful words that will be coming out.

    A Clinton-McCain matchup? Not sure how that would happen (I guess I am cheating, I have a mystical machine that adds numbers together, I call it a calculator, I’ll let Hillary borrow it any time). Enough editorializing, the latter matchup would definetely be a re-run of red vs. blue, them vs. us, fight, fight, fight, get nothing done. Sounds great!

  13. I think the two “citizens” are peddling the usual garbage right-wing talking points we’ve come to expect from the GOP slim machine.

    The GOP has seriously NOTHING left to over the world except slime.

    And that’s what John McCain IS: A slime bucket.

  14. Tom Johnson.
    You are resorting to Obama’s diversionary tactics of attacking those questioning Obama.
    If you have evidence to contradict anything I have said here, on my blog or other blogs, please provide it. Do you have any facts about Obama you would like to provide.
    Try answering the following:
    1. Where was Obama on November 4, 1999 when he should have been in the Illinois Senate?
    2. The senate did not reconvene again until November 16, 1999.
    3. Obama was in Chicago, not Springfield at least by November 8, 1999 to speak at NW Law School.
    4. Larry Sinclair was in Chicago November 3-8, 1999.
    5. Obama has admitted to cocaine use.
    6. Sinclair has alleged drug use and gay sex with Obama between November 3 and November 8, 1999.
    7. There were persistent rumors from the gay community in chicago that Obama was on the down low.
    8. One of Obama’s friends, William Ayers, has admitted to having sex with male friends.
    9. Another male friend of Obama, Lawrence Lessig, has an agenda of blurring the lines between gays and heteros.
    Tom Johnson.
    Can you provide any records about Obama’s whereabouts from November 3 to November 8, 1999? Like IRS records of mileage, meetings, etc. You know, the records the rest of us have to keep.

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