Obama 332
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Romney 206
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Dem 48
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Ties 3
GOP 49
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  • Strongly Dem (167)
  • Likely Dem (85)
  • Barely Dem (80)
  • Exactly tied (0)
  • Barely GOP (15)
  • Likely GOP (47)
  • Strongly GOP (144)
270 Electoral votes needed to win Map algorithm explained
New polls: (None)
Dem pickups: (None)
GOP pickups: IN NC
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Could Gary Johnson Be a Spoiler? Legislator Likes to Photograph Himself

News from the Votemaster

Can Pawlenty or Portman Bring in His State?

Insiders are expecting Mitt Romney to go with a conventional choice for his running mate. Picking a new and exciting candidate, like Gov. Bobby Jindal (R-LA) or Gov. Susan Martinez (R-NM) runs the danger of having an unvetted candidate make a blunder, which calls Romney's judgment into question. Unlike John McCain, Romney was never a daredevil fighter pilot. He always tries to minimize risk. For this reason, former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty and Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) are the most likely picks. They are solid Midwesterners who are unlikely to embarrass Romney.

One of the things a Veep candidate is supposed to do is bring in his own state. What are the chances of this happening? The table below shows how Minnesota and Ohio have gone since World War II.

      Minnesota Ohio
Year Democrat Republican Dem % GOP % Winner Dem % GOP % Winner
2008 Obama McCain 54 44 Dem 51 47 Dem
2004 Kerry Bush 51 48 Dem 49 51 GOP
2000 Gore Bush 48 46 Dem 46 50 GOP
1996 Clinton Dole 51 35 Dem 47 41 Dem
1992 Clinton Bush 44 32 Dem 40 38 Dem
1988 Dukakis Bush 53 46 Dem 44 55 GOP
1984 Mondale Reagan 50 49 Dem 40 59 GOP
1980 Carter Reagan 47 43 Dem 41 52 GOP
1976 Carter Ford 55 42 Dem 49 48 Dem
1972 McGovern Nixon 46 52 GOP 38 60 GOP
1968 Humphrey Nixon 54 42 Dem 43 45 GOP
1964 Johnson Goldwater 64 36 Dem 63 37 Dem
1960 Kennedy Nixon 51 49 Dem 47 53 GOP
1956 Stevenson Eisenhower 46 54 GOP 39 61 GOP
1952 Stevenson Eisenhower 44 55 GOP 43 57 GOP
1948 Truman Dewey 57 40 Dem 50 49 Dem

As can be seen from the table, Minnesota is a very blue state. In the 16 presidential elections since WWII, the Democrats have carried the state 13 times. Only when there is a Republican national landslide (Eisenhower twice and Nixon's reelection) can a Republican win Minnesota. In contrast, the Republicans have won Ohio 10 of the 16 times. In particular, in close elections (and sometimes in not-so-close elections), the Democrat wins Minnesota while the Republican carries Ohio. All this goes to say that having Pawlenty on the ticket probably buys nothing in terms of winning the Veep's home state, while if Portman can add a few points to Romney's total in Ohio, that might swing the state. The chairman of the Ohio Republican Party, Bob Bennett, says that having Portman on the ticket is worth 3 to 5 points.

Americans Frustrated with Campaign Already

It is only July and Americans are already fed up with the campaign. Three-quarters of them say it is more negative than ever before and getting worse, according to a new CNN poll. Obama has been hitting Romney on his taxes and off-shoring jobs while Romney has been skewering Obama on the economy. Neither one has run any positive ads. Normally, a challenger will start off introducing himself to the country by running positive ads, highlighting his accomplishments and goals. There has been virtually none of that this year. It's all negative.

Obama Goes after Romney with White Working-Class Voters

Obama has no chance at all of winning a majority of white working-class men. Nevertheless, he has spent more money ($66 million) specifically trying to make Romney an unacceptable alternative to these voters than for any other purpose. In one ad, workers at a paper plant that was in operation 24 hours a day talk about how Romney came in and closed the plant, firing all the workers, while making $100 million for Bain. In another ad, a series of headlines points out jobs Romney has shipped overseas and his own bank accounts in Switzerland, Bermuda, and the Cayman Islands. If Obama can make Romney toxic enough with these voters, they may stay home on election day, depriving Romney of votes he needs in swing states.

Record Number of Openly Gay Candidates Running for Congress

The change has been swift but largely under the radar. Gerry Studds was forced out of the closet in 1983 and Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) came out voluntarily in 1987. Before them, no member of Congress was on record as being gay or lesbian. The first nonincumbent gay or lesbian to win a seat in Congress was Rep. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) in 1998. Baldwin is now running for the Senate (the first openly gay or lesbian candidate to actually have a serious chance of winning) but what is more amazing is how many other gay or lesbian candidates there are for Congress and how little any one cares about their sexual orientation. It is like a Catholic, Jew or black running for office; it isn't much of an issue. Among candidates given a real shot at winning are Kyrsten Sinema (D) in AZ-09, Sean Maloney (D) in NY-18, Mark Pocan (D) in WI-02, Mark Takano (D) in CA-41, and Richard Tisei (R) in MA-06. While there are several openly gay members of Congress now, all are Democrats. A victory by Tisei over Rep. John Tierne (D-MA) would make Tisei the first openly gay nonincumbent elected to Congress as a Republican. Arizona's Jim Kolbe was reelected after he came out, though. Wikipedia has a list of other gay and lesbian "firsts."

Hillary Clinton Leading in Iowa--in 2016

Politicians and their minions are often (rightfully) accused of being unable to think about the long term, but at least one pollster, PPP, is breaking out of the mold. It is already polling Iowa for the 2016 caucuses. Hillary Clinton would get 60% of the Democratic vote, with Joe Biden at 18%. Next come Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-NY) and Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren at 3% each. Clinton has said a hundred times she is not running. If she really means it, then Biden leads Cuomo 36% to 14%. If neither Clinton nor Biden run, it is Cuomo over Warren 20% to 11%.

On the Republican side, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee and former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum are at 17%, with Gov. Chris Christie (R-NJ) at 16%. However, if Romney loses in 2012, his running mate will probably become the favorite in 2016.

Today's Senate Polls

State Democrat D % Republican R % I I % Start End Pollster
Minnesota Amy Klobuchar 55% Kurt Bills 31%     Jul 17 Jul 19 SurveyUSA

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---The Votemaster

Previous Headlines

Jul23 New Feature Starting Today: A Second Map Page without Rasmussen
Jul23 Economy Improving Somewhat in the Swing States
Jul23 Obama Visits Colorado to Comfort Victim's Families
Jul23 Kerrey Struggling in Nebraska
Jul22 Swing State Economies Are Weak
Jul22 Has Citizens United Changed the Game?
Jul22 Beer and the Presidency
Jul22 Swing State Economies Are Weak
Jul22 Has Citizens United Changed the Game?
Jul22 Beer and the Presidency
Jul21 Shooting in Colorado Unlikely to Become a Campaign Issue
Jul21 National Senate and Congressional Committees Announce June Totals
Jul21 More Women Running for the House Than Ever Before
Jul20 Republican Voters Want Rice as Veep
Jul20 Strategy Memo Dissects the White Working Class
Jul20 The Three Campaigns
Jul20 Romney Hopes European Trip Will Show Him to Be a Statesman
Jul20 DSCC Chairwoman Talks to Maine Democrat Cynthia Dill
Jul19 Romney Camp Divided on Releasing Tax Returns
Jul19 Wealthy Republican Senate Candidates Picking Up Steam
Jul19 Could Foreign Policy Become a Campaign Issue?
Jul18 New Study Finds Voter ID Laws Burdensome
Jul18 Congress May Raise Taxes by Cutting Them
Jul18 Congress May Raise Taxes to Cut Them
Jul18 Ohio Sued for Restricting Early Voting
Jul18 Romney Accuses Obama of Cronyism
Jul17 Obama's Attacks on Bain Appear to be Working
Jul17 Republicans Filibuster DISCLOSE Act
Jul17 R.I.P. Independent Journalism
Jul17 Americans Woefully Ignorant about Government
Jul17 Can Your Mom Run Your SuperPAC?
Jul16 Ron Paul Loses in Nebraska
Jul16 Conservatives Now Calling for Romney to Release Tax Returns
Jul16 Obama Campaigns in Virginia; Romney Sends Surrogates
Jul16 Are Americans Overtaxed?
Jul16 Who's Side Are You On?
Jul16 Ron Paul Loses in Nebraska
Jul16 Conservatives Now Calling for Romney to Release Tax Returns
Jul16 Obama Campaigns in Virginia; Romney Sends Surrogates
Jul16 Are Americans Overtaxed?
Jul16 Who's Side Are You On?
Jul15 Republican Governor May or May Not Have Called for Romney to Release Tax Returns
Jul15 A Look at How Polling Works
Jul15 Green Party Nominates Massachusetts Doctor for President
Jul14 Romney Again Refuses to Release More Tax Returns
Jul14 Boomlet for Condoleezza Rice as Veep Continues
Jul14 Senators McCain and Kyl Endorse Flake in Arizona Primary
Jul13 Cruz Leading Dewhurst in Texas Republican Primary
Jul13 Romney Calls Obama a Liar
Jul13 Republicans Worry That Romney Is Being Swiftboated