Ok, now that I have your attention, please look at this map. The map is put out by Real Clear Politics and it shows McCain winning the electoral college vote by 274-264. The map is based on averaging the latest polls nationwide and is a snapshot of where the electoral college stands today.
Well, I think many people may be surprised. The conventional wisdom has always been that McCain is dead, 72-year-old meat.
Now, let me point out a few things. First, I am not claiming that this result represents what will happen in November. We’ve still got plenty of time for Obama to destroy the old guy. Second, I also am not even claiming that McCain is really ahead in all of the states indicated in red on the map. If you want to argue that Obama will take momentum from the Democratic convention and move ahead strongly in Colorado, for example, you may have a point.
But there is no way getting around it: Obama is in trouble. Recent polls are showing McCain ahead in Ohio, where Obama had a lead until recently, and Colorado and Indiana (same thing). Florida seems pretty solid for McCain, as do Missouri and North Carolina. In my opinion, Virginia, New Mexico, Nevada and NH are going to be very, very close. If you are an Obama supporter, the last few weeks have got to be pretty depressing.
Yes, yes, there will be a surge (I love that word) for Obama after the Democratic convention. I wouldn’t be surprised if this map shows Obama ahead by 40 electoral votes a few days after the Democratic convention. But then there will also be a surge for McCain after the Republican convention, so things may even out.
Two months ago it looked like the old guy was dead and buried. Stick a fork in him. But he has made an impressive comeback. For those of you with an appreciation of history, I’m reminded of the Dukakis campaign. Let’s see if Obama starts wearing one of those tank commander helmets.