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Highly-regarded political analyst Larry Sabato predicts that Obama will win with 290 electoral votes

Larry J. Sabato (above), a professor at the University of Virginia with a great reputation for accurate political predictions, says THIS about the presidential election:

With a slight, unexpected lift provided by Hurricane Sandy, Mother Nature’s October surprise, President Barack Obama appears poised to win his second term tomorrow. Our final Electoral College projection has the president winning the key swing states of Colorado, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, Ohio and Wisconsin and topping Mitt Romney, with 290 electoral votes.

This has been a roller-coaster campaign, though very tight ever since Romney dramatically outshone Obama in the first debate in Denver on Oct. 3. Yet for a challenger to defeat an incumbent, the fates must be with the challenger again and again. Who could have imagined that a Frankenstorm would act as a circuit-breaker on the Republican’s campaign, blowing Romney off center stage for three critical days in the campaign’s last week, while enabling Obama to dominate as presidential comforter-in-chief, assisted by his new bipartisan best friend, Gov. Chris Christie (R)?

Adding to the president’s good fortune was a final jobs report that was basically helpful because it wasn’t disastrously bad — that is, the unemployment rate failed to jump back above the psychologically damaging level of 8%. Romney could have used that number to build a crescendo for change. Instead, the final potential obstacle to Obama’s reelection passed by as a one-day story. While Romney surged after the first debate, he never quite closed the deal in the key swing states. And now, we believe he has run out of time.

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  1. Peggy Noonan just has a way with words.

    http://blogs.wsj.com/peggynoonan/2012/11/05/monday-morning/

    I think they are and I think it’s this: a Romney win.

    Romney’s crowds are building—28,000 in Morrisville, Pa., last night; 30,000 in West Chester, Ohio, Friday It isn’t only a triumph of advance planning: People came, they got through security and waited for hours in the cold. His rallies look like rallies now, not enactments. In some new way he’s caught his stride. He looks happy and grateful. His closing speech has been positive, future-looking, sweetly patriotic. His closing ads are sharp—the one about what’s going on at the rallies is moving.

    All the vibrations are right. A person who is helping him who is not a longtime Romneyite told me, yesterday: “I joined because I was anti Obama—I’m a patriot, I’ll join up But now I am pro-Romney.” Why? “I’ve spent time with him and I care about him and admire him. He’s a genuinely good man.” Looking at the crowds on TV, hearing them chant “Three more days” and “Two more days”—it feels like a lot of Republicans have gone from anti-Obama to pro-Romney.

    Something old is roaring back. One of the Romney campaign’s surrogates, who appeared at a rally with him the other night, spoke of the intensity and joy of the crowd “I worked the rope line, people wouldn’t let go of my hand.” It startled him. A former political figure who’s been in Ohio told me this morning something is moving with evangelicals, other church-going Protestants and religious Catholics. He said what’s happening with them is quiet, unreported and spreading: They really want Romney now, they’ll go out and vote, the election has taken on a new importance to them.

    There is no denying the Republicans have the passion now, the enthusiasm. The Democrats do not. Independents are breaking for Romney. And there’s the thing about the yard signs. In Florida a few weeks ago I saw Romney signs, not Obama ones. From Ohio I hear the same. From tony Northwest Washington, D.C., I hear the same.

    Is it possible this whole thing is playing out before our eyes and we’re not really noticing because we’re too busy looking at data on paper instead of what’s in front of us? Maybe that’s the real distortion of the polls this year: They left us discounting the world around us.

    And there is Obama, out there seeming tired and wan, showing up through sheer self discipline. A few weeks ago I saw the president and the governor at the Al Smith dinner, and both were beautiful specimens in their white ties and tails, and both worked the dais. But sitting there listening to the jokes and speeches, the archbishop of New York sitting between them, Obama looked like a young challenger—flinty, not so comfortable. He was distracted, and his smiles seemed forced. He looked like a man who’d just seen some bad internal polling. Romney? Expansive, hilarious, self-spoofing, with a few jokes of finely calibrated meanness that were just perfect for the crowd. He looked like a president. He looked like someone who’d just seen good internals.

    Of all people, Obama would know if he is in trouble. When it comes to national presidential races, he is a finely tuned political instrument: He read the field perfectly in 2008. He would know if he’s losing now, and it would explain his joylessness on the stump. He is out there doing what he has to to fight the fight. But he’s still trying to fire up the base when he ought to be wooing the center and speaking their calm centrist talk. His crowds haven’t been big. His people have struggled to fill various venues. This must hurt the president after the trememdous, stupendous crowds of ’08. “Voting’s the best revenge”—revenge against who, and for what? This is not a man who feels himself on the verge of a grand victory. His campaign doesn’t seem president-sized. It is small and sad and lost, driven by formidable will and zero joy.

    I suspect both Romney and Obama have a sense of what’s coming, and it’s part of why Romney looks so peaceful and Obama so roiled.

  2. doc: Ed Kilgore of the Washington Monthly has a pretty snarky response to Peggy Noonan’s column.

    An excerpt:

    Like many of you no doubt, I’ve been trying to avoid the vast late-autumn harvest of Pure Spin pouring out of TV and computer screens today. Polls, yes. Actual analysis, yes. Insights into how it’s happened and what it might actually mean, sure. But please, no more phoned-in “Hark! The Sound of Momentum!” maunderings, no more data-free “Mood of the Heartland” ruminations penned in DC and Manhattan.

    Ah, but then Peggy Noonan convinced the Editors of the Wall Street Journal that her final pre-election column discussing Obama’s Failed Presidency just wasn’t enough, leaving readers longing for more of her insight honed in Ronnie’s service, craving more of her gems of literary craftsmanship. So today we have Peggy’s blog—absolute catnip to me—and it’s all you’d expect.
    —-

    Read the whole thing. It’s downright delicious:

    http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/political-animal-a/2012_11/the_seer040963.php

  3. Kilgore says”

    “To gimlet-eyed Peggy, the whole solemn ritual of American democracy probably looks just like a paycheck. ”

    So I think he called Peggy Noonan a drunk, hack who is only in it for the money.

    Very classy and so typical of the jaded, snarky left wing.

    You probably dream of sitting at the bar tipping a few back with old Ed and telling stories of the good old days eh?

    It is kind of hard to write glowing things about your own candidate, so I guess I will give him a break.

  4. If Obama loses this election, you can blame/thank the Right for bamboozling him. How is it ethical that an entire news network questions the President’s citizenship for four years to create doubt in voters while a fringe element of the far right demonizes and degrades him? Most of this is financed by the rich who want to keep their stranglehold on the flow of wealth in our country. Watch the white hands apply the Blackface to our first African-American President at http://dregstudiosart.blogspot.com/2012/10/bamboozling-obama.html

  5. Last chance to sell bad artwork! Any takers?

  6. expdoc: Get a grip! And learn how to look up words and terms with which you’re not familiar.

    “Gimlet-eyed” is a reference to piercing eyes or sharp-sightedness. Kilgore was mocking Noonan’s pretensions to insights that are beyond the rest of us.

    I hope you’re a little more careful in reading the materials related to your profession.

  7. By the way, doc, how’s it going to go for your dream ticket up there on the cheesy side of the Cheddar Curtain? It looks like Paul Ryan won’t even carry his home state. Pretty embarrassing.

  8. shawnnews

    Al Gore didn’t carry his home state either. If Obama wins Wisconsin, it will show the left got their act together after Scott Walker.

  9. It’s not just Wisconsin, but Michigan, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and California are home states to Romney/Ryan. The polls show all 5 going to Obama.

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