For those of you reading my diaries on the 2012 and 2014 U.S. Senate predictions, you'll note how I hinted that the entire November 2012 Presidential Elections could come down to a single state like Colorado or Iowa, which are my two best guesses based on this hypothetical electoral map of how I honestly think the election would go if held today.
Don't just take my word for it. Liberal Democratic loyalist/activist pundits from former House Majority Leader Dick Gephardt, James Carville, and Joe Trippi have told CNN and Fox News hosts recently they all believe (in separate interviews) that the election "will be close" and that "We aren't going to see a repeat of 2008." This hypothetical of my map shows how close it could be.
Colorado is the key?
Republicans and presisely Mitt Romney would be wise to focus on Colorado in particular.
Why Colorado? They just have 9 Electoral Votes.
- Lets look first at their Presidential history: 8 of the past 10 Presidential Elections the Rocky Mountain State has voted for the Republican.
- Next, there are some positive signs for the GOP, following the new re-districting, mainly in CO CD-02.
- 4 of Colorado's 7 U.S. Representatives are Republican. While this may not seem like much, two came in the 2010 wave and this delegation is considered "young" and "new" by incumbancy standards across the board with the longest tenured Representative being a Democrat in the 1st district that only goes back to 1997.
- True, their Governor may be a liberal (and frankly a wierd) Democrat, and both their U.S. Senators may be Democrats, but Colorado has had a long history of splitting their Senate seats between party, so I don't see this trend continuing much longer.
- Colorado's state legislature is split with Republicans just re-taking the House with a 6 seat gain in 2010, compare that to Nevada where the state House and Senate are under Democratic control, given their Governor Brian Sandoval, is a young, upcoming conservative and probable future Senator someday (if that happens, you heard it here first). :)
We aren't talking a hopelessly lost state like California or tree-hugging, eco-freak Washington or Oregon. We are talking a good, sensible, mountain-West state with decent, All-American, 2nd Amendment people that could very well swing.
But why Colorado of all states, you still ask.
Not only do I know several people personally that have relocated to Colorado over the years, none of which would be considered overtly liberal (giving me hope), but if you look at the map and do the math, if we capture this state, we could capture the entire election.
Consider that under my map above:
Obama could still win heavily-Hispanic Nevada (6 Electoral votes) and New Mexico (5 Electoral votes) along with progressive Iowa (6 electoral votes) that launched Obam's campaign in 2008 and re-itterated it in November by going blue, and still lose the Presidency.
But what about Iowa?
Because Iowa legalized gay marriage (although the three justices that overturned the state law have since been thrown out), and because they voted for Obama and launched his campaign, I see them trending blue and therefore would take my chances on Colorado.
Now, if Romney and Republicans are smart, they will not put all their eggs in Colorado's basket because the last thing you want is a few undecided states left on the board, all of which have to fall a certain way, and if they don't, Obama gets re-elected.
No, it would be better to try and be competative in all states since you never know what could happen, nor which one could tip the scales back in our favor ala 2000 or 2004. All I am saying is my personal guess is Colorado and if that happens, you heard it here first and I will be happy to explain my theory on air when the time is right.
No Margin for Error under "Colorado plan"
Under my plan, Romney would have to sweep the South as in, win all 13 former states of the Confederacy (Missouri and Kentucky had stars reserved but split alliances, I know). This would of course include New South North Carolina and annoyingly progressive Virginia with their DC Northern Virginia suburbs. This would also include the ever diverse and Southern-in-geography-only (South of Jacksonville): Florida.
If ceding Iowa, Nevada, and New Mexico to the Democrats and Obama, under this scenario, Romney and the Republicans would also have to win Ohio and Indiana (and take the rest of the usual states with no surprises).
If he does that, he's got it.
Romney would end up becoming our 45th President with 276 Electoral Votes to 262 for Obama. Otherwise, as I have it now, Obama squeaks by with 271 Electoral Votes to 267 for Romney.
But why not New Mexico? Nevada?
Those of you may wonder why not these two states?
Not only does Nevada have Heathen arm-pit Las Vegas, but their new House seat in NV CD-O4 is projected to go to the Democrats albeit in a close race. Additionally, there is no guarantee Dean Heller will hold on to his Senate seat in a race against carpetbagger-New Yorker Shelley Berkley who moved to the state 45 years ago yet never could drop her native (ugly) Brooklyn accent.
Finally, with the way unions bailed out Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in 2010 after seemingly losing his seat in a landslide, and the ever growing number of Democratic Hispanics, I basically have no hopes for this state anymore at least outside of that Senate race and the two "safe" Republican House seats.
Along those lines, add New Mexico to the mix which actually increased its state Democratic Senate majority in 2010 and already had a Democratic state Senate majority and this state is obviously trending bluer thanks to immigration. New Mexico, barring some unforseen Governor Martinez "Queen-making"-political pull, is a lost cause for Republicans electorally, at least at the moment.
Conclusion: yes it could come down to a single state like 2000, only this time with Iowa, Nevada, New Mexico, or Colorado, but given the above facts, go with Colorado, and hope for the best.
In a future diary, I'll write how a Romney-VP Gov. Chris Christie ticket, given Christie could swing New Jersey red, could mean Republicans don't have to win Ohio to get the White House if they follow the above "Colorado plan".
(But more likely would mean they don't need NV, NM, CO, IA, or even precariously lavender-turning AZ if you can believe it, matematically).