I know it’s a bit late in the day to make anything resembing a prediction, but I wanted to go on the record, so you can all laugh at me tonight.
I’ve talked about the enthusiasm gap before (and Ezra talks about it today) and we reach different conclusions.
Ezra thinks the electoral college will be close… I don’t. Using this nifty Electoral Vote tool (via Greenwald), I came up with over 400 electoral votes for Sen. Obama. That is, admittedly, very optimistic.
Still, this election, by some accounts, will hang on Pennsylvania and Florida, both of which are in the Eastern time zone. It’s entirely possible that midwestern and western voters (in places like Arizona and Nevada) will have heard those states called for Obama before they get to the polls and decide not to bother. As Ezra states, this seems more likely to occur for people intending to vote for Sen. McCain.
Supporters of Sen. Obama will vote, if for no other reason, than to say that they voted for the first black President. They will wait in lines (as they already have) just to be able to know they were part of his victory. I think this trend (which I have no actual evidence of) is enough to carry Sen. Obama in states where he’s within 3-4 points in polling.
That means that he would win: Ohio, Missouri, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, Indiana, Arizona, Nevada, Montana.
So, the map will look something like this (from RealClearPolitics.com, which let me use my own colors):