The Crystal Ball

You might want to take a look at Larry Sabato’s latest analysis of the presidential race. Dr. Sabato is the director of the respected Center for Politics at the University of Virginia and publishes his analyses in The Crystal Ball. The current status finds four states (New Hampshire, Virginia, Wisconsin, and Colorado) toss-ups with the balance of the states solid Democratic, likely Democratic, leans Democratic, leans Republican, likely Republican, or solid Republican. If Mitt Romney carries all of the leaning, likely, or solid Republican states and all of the toss-ups, he wins. If he loses any of those states including all of the toss-ups, he loses.

Dr. Sabato goes on to consider three scenarios for possible outcomes: Obama wins without winning Ohio, Romney wins without winning Ohio, and an electoral vote tie. Interesting reading.

I continue to think that the popular vote will be very, very close. In a Romney sweep election in addition to the states above he could also carry Pennsylvania, Ohio, Iowa, and Nevada. But it would take a sweep; I really doubt that would happen in a close election. That’s what Nate Silver has been crowing about at the NYT for the last several months.

7 comments… add one
  • steve Link

    Query- If one candidate wins the electoral vote but loses the popular vote, will gridlock be worse or will it be irrelevant?


  • Ben Wolf Link

    @Dave Shuler

    You checked out XCOM: Enemy Unknown, yet? Definitely worth the cash if you’re in the market for some old school entertainment.

  • How can the gridlock get worse? They haven’t passed a budget in years. Does it get more inept than that?

  • Anecdotal evidence at this point, but it appears that ObamaCare is beginning to have the intended effect. Of course the biggest employers have been wanting to shift entirely to part-time labor for a long time. But thanks to the lousy economy and the brilliant work of our EXALTED LEADERS they can now start acting with impunity.

    But at least the president is focused on the Big Things: Big Bird and binders and imaginary ailments! President B+ strikes again!

  • steve Link

    @Ice- The biggest employers self-insure. The ACA doesnt affect them very much. Small employers, under 50, will benefit from the ACA as they will be able to buy on exchanges. At present, small employers pay 10%-15% more for the same insurance that a larger company would provide. The employers most likely to be affected are in the 50-1000 range.

    That said, the Massachusetts experience suggests it wont have much effect. But, maybe Massachusetts is really different. It is still difficult to predict how this goes. As an employer, I need to pay total compensation of X (including wages and benefits) to attract and keep employees. If I dont pay them benefits, I still need to pay them X, it just comes in the form of higher salary. Of course, in a tight labor market this is less true. There are advantages and disadvantages to having part-time workers for any given employer and position. They probably work better in low skill, high turnover jobs, like the restaurant industry. Probably not so well in higher skilled jobs, like where most of our manufacturing jobs are heading.


  • The ACA doesnt affect them very much.

    Especially since a good number of those large employers who might be most affected have secured waivers or exemptions. What will happen in 2014 is hard to say. It’s still not entirely clear what requirements qualifying plans will need to satisfy, the whole thing might be repealed, waivers could be extended again, etc. Reminds me of the story of the caliph and the donkey.

  • It’s still not entirely clear what requirements qualifying plans will need to satisfy, the whole thing might be repealed, waivers could be extended again, etc.

    Hmm, would that be the smell of UNCERTAINTY I smell wafting through the air?

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