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Electoral prediction: Wisconsin will flip red - The Red and Black : Politics

Electoral prediction: Wisconsin will flip red

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Posted: Sunday, November 4, 2012 12:00 pm | Updated: 10:30 am, Tue Nov 6, 2012.

As of now, most national polls for the presidential election stand at 47 percent for President Barack Obama and 47 percent for Gov. Mitt Romney.

All of the political talking heads on your television are telling you one of two things. They’re either telling you what you want to hear, or the truth: that this election is simply too close to call.

Generally speaking, one of the best tells for the winner of an election, particularly when an incumbent president is running, is history. If you look back over the country’s history, no president has been reelected when the unemployment rate was over 7.3 percent (excluding FDR and the extenuating circumstances of the Great Depression). We sit at 7.9 percent right now. Normally that would be a pretty telling statistic, except that as a country we are once again sitting in a pretty exceptional circumstance. In all possibility, Obama could make history and be elected with almost 8 percent unemployment. It’s possible, but — and this might be my inner hope talking — I just don’t think it will happen.

Here’s why: in order to win the presidential election, you need 270 electoral votes.

President Obama has 201 electoral votes locked in. Romney sits at 191. That leaves 11 states standing somewhere in between. “Battle” or “swing” states, as they are commonly called, are states that will most likely remain too close to call until Election Day. Both candidates fight for every poll point in these 11 states, while leaving the other 39 in relative peace until Tuesday. Despite the incredibly close polls in these states, I’m calling it: Romney will win on Tuesday with 276 electoral votes.

As I predict it, the split will be close, but will ultimately go red. Nevada and Colorado, the two states currently considered tossups out west, will easily be taken by Obama. Romney will take Florida and North Carolina according to the polls — he is currently leading by a point in both states. Iowa and New Hampshire will all go blue this election, but that’s okay — we’ll let them and their tiny number of electoral votes go. That leaves Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Ohio and Wisconsin with the electoral spread 232 for Obama, 235 for Romney. That leaves 71 votes hanging before the candidates’ hungry fingers.

Obama will take Minnesota easily and Pennsylvania with a little more effort. But then Ohio’s eighteen, due to the Obama’s absolute obliteration of the state’s coal industry, will surprise and go Republican. Virginia (13) will keep to its history by voting for the conservative in the race, Romney. This leaves the spread at 262 for Obama, 266 for Romney with one state left: Wisconsin.

Now, Wisconsin has historically been a blue state — they’ve voted Democrat in the past four elections.  It’s also never been much of a battle ground state, until this year. However, Paul Ryan, Romney’s running mate, is a Wisconsin native with a strong base that has been coming out strong this election cycle.

Also, the Republican base has been unbelievably active since the state’s gubernatorial recall election in 2010 (the Republican won that race).

Wisconsin may be sitting with a better than average 7.3 percent unemployment rate, but its largest nuclear power plant (a major jobs boon) is closing in the next six months. Things are not looking up for the state’s economy, and the people there have made it clear they want change, — the real kind. They’ll go red, and give their highly sought after ten votes to Romney for the 276 win.

— Amanda Horne is a sophomore from Cartersville majoring in psychology and political science



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  • Barry Hollander posted at 1:39 pm on Mon, Nov 5, 2012.

    Barry Hollander Posts: 8

    There's a lot of wishful thinking going on here, which is fine if you're into wishful thinking. The more systematic analyses of state and national polls suggest an Obama win with 300 or so electoral votes. See the 538 blog or the Princeton election folks for details. Neither says it's a 100% done deal for Obama, but they put the percent likelihood fairly high.

    The real narrative now is that somehow Hurricane Sandy stalled Romney's momentum. It's a compelling narrative, one promoted this past weekend by Rove and Morris. Unfortunately, the number crunchers had already said Romney's "mo" stalled a week or so before the storm ever happened.

    What we'll find Tuesday -- or more likely, early Wednesday morning -- is whether the number crunchers had it right the whole time. The electoral math at one site has dropped Obama's electoral vote count from 320 to 303 as of this morning, so it's getting more and more interesting.

    And it's funny I couldn't use a couple of real names because they also set off the R&B's profanity filter.

  • KC_Mike posted at 8:57 am on Mon, Nov 5, 2012.

    KC_Mike Posts: 1

    I think Colorado and New Hampshire will go Romney, but Ohio will go BHO. I get Romney 271, BHO 267.

    The best chance BHO has is to flip NH, while IA is Romney's best bet to pad his win a little and he even has a reasonable chance at NV.

    Republicans are kidding themselves in MN and PA. Democrats are kidding themselves in VA and NC.

  • jmw11 posted at 6:57 pm on Sun, Nov 4, 2012.

    jmw11 Posts: 2


    It appears as though you are using Realclearpolitics as your source for the 201 safe electoral votes for Obama and 191 for Romney. RCP only calls states with more than a 5% lead, which is one of the most, forgive my pun, conservative measures of calling a state. Many other websites and institutes that call electoral predictions, like Fivethirtyeight, NYtimes, and Sabato's Crystal Ball, all predict Obama to win at least 243 electoral votes.

    Also, Wisconsin, as you stated, has indeed been a battleground state in two of the last three presidential elections. In both 2000 and 2004, the Democratic candidates squeaked by in Wisconsin by less than a 1% margin of victory, more than enough to consider it a swing state. And Colorado is much more of a tossup than Florida, Ohio, and Virginia and should not be lumped with Nevada as a likely state for Obama.

    It's hard to argue that Romney's path to win the electoral college isn't harder than the President's, especially since in Ohio, the likely tipping point state in this election, all but one of the most recent polls all have Obama ahead by at least 2 points.

  • wavettore posted at 2:20 pm on Sun, Nov 4, 2012.

    wavettore Posts: 1

    Once again, the next US presidential election will be fixed. Mitt Romney will be elected even though Barack Obama would have received more votes in the presidential election. The political assassination will be perpetrated by Bush hiding behind Crossroads GPS, the most influential group of Neocons.

    The Neocons will have Mitt Romney elected to first use him and then let him fall easy prey. All blames and responsibilities will fall on the new Mormon president for the events already planned.

    The new World War of Religion is already a done deal behind the backs of all people to bring chaos and poverty and to favor in the end one New World Order


    Since 9/11 it's the War on Terror
    One "false flag" attack so called by error
    Blair, Bush, and Israel had a Pact in store
    Their next surprise is knocking at your door
    A hidden vile Idea from those who want "more"
    will use you and your Belief for the next World War
    As "chosen people" gain while Humankind loses
    Greed wins not by the swords but by the words of Moses
    Daring is to tell you when, better then to tell you rhymes
    could not side with either one to get ready for our times
    to look beyond and past today to seek for a solution
    one only hope is there for you and spells Wavevolution


    A new type of Revolution wins with the ultimate weapon:
    Your Mind


  • asuschoolboy posted at 2:19 pm on Sun, Nov 4, 2012.

    asuschoolboy Posts: 2

    As for your claims about statistical bias resulting from the oversampling of liberals, most external polls support the conclusion offered by Nate Silver, who is the one of the top statisticians today. In fact he was off by four electoral votes in the last presidential race and was right on 49 states. Your statement does however reflect the reality of polling because these things are a combination of magic, the liberal agenda, and just a little bit of socialism. Dude, get real! These polls are derived by expert statisticians and mathematicians who spend their life creating these models and then having them rigorously tested and verified. Next time you want to cite a "credible" source please do not submit a poll commenting on the error of another poll. That's like the pot calling the kettle black.

  • ugadawg posted at 1:32 pm on Sun, Nov 4, 2012.

    ugadawg Posts: 3

    In response to the other comment, the polls ARE statistically biased, as they oversample democrats. Also, if you keep reading that liberal rag AKA the NY Times, you won't get any unbiased info!


  • asuschoolboy posted at 1:22 pm on Sun, Nov 4, 2012.

    asuschoolboy Posts: 2


    I know this is an opinion piece, but you have to open your eyes and read from time to time. For Romney to win, polls have to be statistically biased, according to Nate Silver (an accomplished statistician who is analyzing poll data). Obama currently has a >85% chance of winning the electoral vote. You will be wrong on several states, and Wisconsin will vote for Obama. Check it out for yourself: http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/

    So no, Romney probably won't win. Good luck again in 2016.