The polls I have seen recently suggest Obama is running worse amongst Catholics than Kerry did. If that holds, it spells disaster for him in Ohio, Michigan and Pennsylvania.
I want to believe that. But how come that’s not showing up in the polls?
Ohio especially, as the Dem heartland of the buckeye state is in the heavily Catholic northern part of the state (westside of Cleveland and its suburbs, Steubanville, Youngstown, Lorain, etc.). I expect McCain to clean house in Cincy and its suburbs and in the SE part of the state (Appalachia). The blacks in east Cleveland, Dayton, inner Columbus, and north Cincinatti will not be enough to take the state. He needs a solid turnout from blue collar and elderly Catholics in the northern part of the state, along with independents in the Columbus area (although I predict only a slight win in the city, with a loss in the suburban towns). Advantage: McCain.
We lost PA from 92-04 only due to the collapse of the GOP vote in the mainline suburbs (Montgomery and Delaware Counties) to say nothing of Bucks and a subpar performance in Chester Counties. Although the black population has increased in both Montgomery and Delaware Counties over the past 15 years, McCain can bring these back in the GOP column provided the "ladies who lunch" don't stay home (I DON'T see them voting for Obama due to the rather coarse racial politics of the Philadelphia area).
Michigan is in many ways a replay of Pennsylvania, with a huge black population in the largest city of the state, but with suburbs largely the product of white flight and affected by racial tension. See Oakland County as Montgomery County and Macomb County as Delaware County and you'll see my point. I see McCain bring Macomb into the GOP column for the first time since 88, with Oakland going narrowly for McCain due to the large black populations in Southfield and Pontiac.