Electoral Vote Predictor 2004:   Kerry 228   Bush 291

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electoral college strong kerry Strong Kerry (88)
electoral college weak kerry Weak Kerry (93)
electoral college barely kerry Barely Kerry (47)
electoral college tied Exactly tied (19)
electoral college barely bush Barely Bush (63)
electoral college weak bush Weak Bush (90)
electoral college strong bush Strong Bush (138)
Needed to win: 270

News from the Votemaster

I got over 800 e-mails yesterday. I haven't read them all yet, but I will try. Priority is defending the servers. From an initial glance, a lot of people bemoan the polarization of the country. Not too many years ago, Republicans and Democrats could disagree on policy but be civil to one another and not try to silence the other side by whatever means it takes. Although I don't agree with them on many policy issues, I have a lot of respect for senators like John McCain (R-AZ), Richard Lugar (R-IN), and Chuck Hagel (R-NE). They defend their respective positions well, but are willing to engage their opponents in reasoned discussion about the issue at hand. I wish more people (and especially politicians) were like that.

I upgraded the other server to a P4 as well. Now electoral-vote.com is served by a pair of top-of-the-line Pentium 4s with 1 GB of RAM, 100 GB of fast disk, and redundant OC-3 fiber optic connections to the Internet. If the attackers' goal was to get me to spend some money, they have succeeded. If the goal was to take the site down, rather the opposite has happened: with the load now being distributed between two very powerful servers handling this site and nothing else, response time is better than ever. And that is a good thing since we had over half a million visitors yesterday!

I have 28 new polls today from a variety of organizations. One newcomer is the Chicago Tribune, which naturally focuses on the Midwest. In their polls (conducted by Market Shares), Kerry is now ahead in three key states: Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin, with Bush ahead in Iowa. All are close though. On the other hand, Strategic Vision reports Bush leading in Ohio, Iowa, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin and tied in New Jersey. Tonight's debate in Arizona could be crucial as it will be the last time the voters see the candidates together. Be sure to watch. If ARG runs 30 polls again as they did in the past, I will have their report tomorrow.

Bush has gained the upper hand in the electoral college for the moment. He picked up Iowa and Wisconsin and brought New Jersey to a tie as a result of three new Strategic Vision (R) polls there, which are slightly more recent than the Chicago Tribune polls. I started to average the recent polls, but so many people complained, I dropped the idea. To compare the pollsters, see the pollsters page. Personally, I have my doubts about Strategic Vision, but I am sticking to my rule of using the poll with the most recent middle date, and breaking ties in favor of the shortest poll, and averaging tied shortest polls. The raw data, as usual, is available by clicking the Polling data link to the right of the map. If you want to make your own averages, the data is available there.

Senate news: Some weird stuff is happening in a couple of Senate races. Salon.com reports that Sen. Jim Bunning (R-KY), who was expected to coast to an easy re-election over state senator Daniel Mongiardo, has been acting very strangely. Among other things, he tore up his agreement to debate Mongiardo in Lexington, KY, and insisted on being in the Republican National Committee headquarters with no audience or reporters present and the debate held over a satellite link. He refused to debate live so it was taped and will air tonight. People who have seen the tape say Bunning appears to be reading from a TelePrompter, leading to speculation that the 73-year-old Bunning is ill, possibly with Alzheimer's. It could be worse. In 2000, the people of neighboring Missouri elected a dead man to the Senate. (Popular governor Mel Carnahan died in a plane crash shortly before the election, but he won anyway.)

Although Tom Coburn says he wants to elected to the Senate from Oklahome, he is sure going about it in an odd way. Referring to a campaign worker, Coburn recently said: "He was telling me lesbianism is so rampant in some of the schools in southeast Oklahoma that they'll only let one girl go to the bathroom." The school superintendent in that area, Joe McCulley, responded with: "I don't believe that." politics1.com has that story. Coburn has a long history of saying things he later regrets. The race is very close and could determine control of the Senate.

Burb news: Survey USA ran polls in 30 states to find out whether suburban areas more favor the Democrats or Republicans than their states as a whole. The conventional wisdom that Bush does well in the suburbs is true: he runs about 7% better there than in the 30 states collectively. In 27 of the states surveyed, Bush does better in the suburbs than in the state as a whole. The only states surveyed in which Kerry does better in the suburbs than in the state as a whole are MO, CO, and NV. In NY, IN, TN, IL, SC, CA, OR, IA, KS, NC, OK, and AL Bush is running 10% or more ahead in the suburbs than in the whole state. Bush is leading in terms of actual number of voters in the suburbs in 21 of the states surveyed. Kerry has more voters in in the suburbs in only eight of the states surveyed (NY, IL, MI, WA, NJ, RI, MD, and NV). ME is tied. For example, Kerry has a 23% edge in NY state as a whole, but only a 6% lead in suburban NY counties, so NY shows up on both lists above. If you are new to this site, this might be a good time to memorize the 50 two-letter state abbreviations. You are going to see them a lot here. They are on the map for easy reference though.

Sex news: Well, gender news, actually. While it was at it, Survey USA also checked out the gender gap statewide in the same states. It discovered that men and women are different. In 28 of the states surveyed, Kerry runs better among women than men, with an advantage of over 20% in FL, GA, RI, AR, and OR. The best Bush does in a tie in CO and PA. The average gender gap is 11%. Bush's new campaign slogan should be Henry Higgins line from My Fair Lady": "Why can't a woman be more like a man?"

Media news: www.politicalwire.com has more on the Sinclair story I mentioned yesterday. Salon.com now has a technical expert backing up its story that Bush was wired fpr the first debate. He says the large size of the box is due to its cryptographic capabilities. I don't know, but from my own photo taken from the debate tape it seems Bush has something under his jacket and his campaign has stated that he was not wearing a bulletproof vest.

Projected Senate: 47 Democrats, 51 Republicans, 1 independent, 1 tossup
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-- The votemaster

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Statistics Collector (via University of Kentucky)