I will give Florida to Romney. It’s totally up in the air, I think, and could go either way. But until it’s proven otherwise, I say that the weight of most polls is probably pretty accurate, and the aggregate of Florida polls seems to me to lean very slightly toward Romney. So that gets him to 235. Four states to go.
I’ll toss New Hampshire into Obama’s column. It’s not so different from Pennsylvania, Michigan, and Wisconsin, except that it did go for George W. Bush in 2000. Again, I look at 2008 margins. Obama won it by 10 percent, so he has a cushion here as well. Polls suggests he should be able to eke out a win of three points or so. That’s four more EVs, or 263.
We are left with Colorado, Virginia, and Ohio. I’m going to give Colorado to Romney by a very slim margin. Obama has tended to lead there, but I’m just going to do it, for two reasons. First, I think Colorado swing voters are probably a little more libertarian than Eastern swing voters, which means a few more Romney votes from them. Second, I just don’t think Obama has quite enough momentum that everything is going to tumble his way. That gets Romney to 244.
And that’s where he stops. Obama takes Ohio and Virginia. In Ohio, I think he’s pretty clearly ahead. It’s what the polls say. Virginia is more mixed, but it’s my hunch.
So: Obama 294, Romney 244. No Floridas, no hanging chads, no Supreme Courts. A lot of states will be close, but I think it will be clear enough. Popular vote will be Obama by maybe 1.8 percent, something a shade under 2 percent.