Election Predictions

June 26, 2012 03:39 AM

via a special arrangement with Informa Economics, Inc.

GOP to keep House | A 50/50 Senate? | A very close race for president

NOTE: This column is copyrighted material, therefore reproduction or retransmission is prohibited under U.S. copyright laws.

The period from July Fourth until early September usually gives election-year watchers the best information as to who voters want in Washington – the House, the Senate and this year, the White House.

A lot can happen in those two months, what with the anemic U.S. economy, the lingering European financial mess, weakened China and Indian economies, and a host of foreign policy concerns running the gambit from Iran to Syria to North Korea. Consider all those caveats that would make any election predictions now subject to some changes, perhaps major alternations.

First, an easy prediction: The Republicans will continue to control the House. The Democrats would need a net gain of 25 seats to wrest control from the GOP which now controls the chamber. Not impossible. Just improbably. I give odds of 75 percent that the GOP maintains control.

On to the Senate. Early on in my career I had a supervisor that said never to answer 50/50 and if he I did, I would be fired. Well, a 50/50 seat outcome is certainly possible in the Senate (counting the independents as caucusing with the Democrats).Under a 50/50 divide in the Senate, the Vice President would break voting ties. And of course that person depends on which party lays claim to the White House. And, in a number of states like Virginia, the presidential candidate who wins that state will likely see the party's Senate candidate also win on election night. That's some linkage.

Now for the presidential race. The election-year experts I respect and monitor are in the too-close-to-call camp at this juncture. If I had to guess right now, I would say President Obama will squeak by. However, my odds of that happening are only 55 percent. A lot can happen. Also, GOP candidate Mitt Romney has some momentum and if this continues, and the months ahead will determine the outcome, Romney can lay claim to the White House.

Swing states and battleground states are what presidential election-watchers list as the ones to watch. I've boiled the swing states down to nine – that doesn't mean other states are no less important, but here are the nine, largely via how much money both presidential campaigns have spent thus far in each state:

– Nevada (Hispanics 17% of voters)

– Iowa

– Ohio

– Virginia

– Colorado (Hispanics 13% of voters)

– New Hampshire

– North Carolina

– Pennsylvania

– Florida (Hispanics 19% of voters)

The list above includes the number of Hispanic voters in key states where they could well make a difference in presidential and congressional contests – if enough come out an actually vote.

Some observers refine the above list by noting the following:

Biggest of battleground states

Fla. | Ohio | Va. | N.H. | Iowa | Colo.

Romney must win Fla. | Ohio | Va.

Obama can win with victory in one of those states and one of the other three

So there you have it. I will update these predictions as we get closer to elections.


NOTE: This column is copyrighted material, therefore reproduction or retransmission is prohibited under U.S. copyright laws.






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