Good News All Around

Ken AshfordElection 2008Leave a Comment

Various networks have chimed in…. and while not all of them have called these races, at least one has called:

A win for Jeanne Shaheen (D) over Sununu (R) for Senate (NH)
A win for Hagan (D) over Dole (R) ifor Senate (NC)
…and Pennsylvania for Obama.
This last one was supposedly McCain's ace in the hole.  To win, under almost every scenario, he needed to "steal" a safe Obama state.  His campaign chose Pennsylvania to be that state.  He didn't get it.
That Obama took PA isn't a surprise, but the fact that it was quickly called for Obama indicates a blowout, and portends badly for McCain.
As I write this, Obama is leading in North Carolina (a state I predicted he would lose).  With 9% of the precincts in, Obama is up 55-44.  If this goes Obama in the next half hour, you can call it a night (see my "any Two" scenario below), because McCain would have to pick up EVERY key battleground state remaining (Ohio, Florida, Missouri, Montana, Indiana, in particular) to win.  
And it ain't lookin' good for him in Florida. 
9:00 pm  I'm looking at the county-by-county results for NC, where Obama leads 52-47 with 32% of the precincts reporting.  Apparently, that figure includes NO preciincts from Raleigh-Durham, and none from the Asheville area.  Only a small percentage from the Triad, and Charlotte.  Meanwhile, the hillybilly precincts in eastern NC are nearly done being counted.  So I REALLY feel good about NC.
9:30 pm  Ohio and New Mexico called for Obama.
So basically, what it boils down to is this.  Obama can now lose every battleground state not called (including Virginia, Florida, North Carolina, Missouri and Indiana), but as long as he holds the states that Kerry had (that aren't battleground), he wins.
Or, look at it this way:  Obama now has 200 EVs.  Let's assume he wins California and Hawaii.  That puts him at 258.  He'll only need 12 more to hit 270.   Where does he get them?  Almost any combination of the states which are strongly Obama (not "leaning"):  Washington (11 EVs), Oregon (8 EVs), Iowa (7 EVs) or Colorado (9 EVs).  You can FORGET all the battleground states.  That's how close Obama is to winning now.
Time to start the post-mortems.