Skip to comments.Ohio Is Closer than You Think (Superb analysis!)
Posted on 10/20/2012 7:18:52 AM PDT by TonyInOhio
Just a few weeks ago, Ohio was a state that was considered almost every media outlet to be a solid lock for Obama. Theres no need to rehash the actual headlines, but some even suggested Romney give up on Ohio and look elsewhere for a path to victory. Before the first debate, Romney was down 5.6 in RCPs Buckeye State average. Today he is down 2.5, cutting his deficit by more than half, presumably in large part due to his strong first-debate performance. Here are a few reasons why its even closer than that:
Democratic turnout advantage from 2008 probably wasnt as big as you think: Last cycle was a wave election and Barack Obama took Ohio by 4.6 percent, 51.5 to 46.9. The exit polls showed a split of 39 percent Democrats, 31 percent Republicans, and 30 percent independents. If that had been the actual turnout, according to exit polls measurement of how members of each party said they voted, Obama would have won 52.8 to 45.6, for a 7.2 percent margin victory, substantially bigger than the margin by which he actually won. This means that the exit polls were off a little, which is unsurprising since they are, after all, just polls.
But we have actual vote totals to compare these polls to. If you use the exit-poll numbers for reported voting by party and then look at what kind of a turnout by party youd need to get to the actual state vote tally, you come out with this breakdown: 37.5 percent Democrats, 32.5 percent Republicans, and 30 percent Independents (that gives you a vote of 51.6 percent for Obama and 46.9 percent for McCain pretty close to actual results). So while the 2008 exit polls show an eight-point Democrat advantage, in reality it was likely closer to five percent. That is a big difference when analyzing current polls.
Romney is up big with independents: In 2008 Obama beat John McCain by 8 percent among independents in Ohio. Of the seven current RCP polls that give independent numbers, Romney is up by an average of 8.7 percent:
Thats a 16 percent swing in independents toward Romney from 2008′s numbers. If you assume equal turnout in 2012 as 2008 (using my number from above) but take Obamas 8 percent edge with independents and give it Romney, that 4.6 percent 2008 margin becomes a tie. At that point, Romney would win if he chips away at the five-percent turnout advantage from 2008.
The current poll samples have Democratic turnout matching or exceeding 2008 levels: Of the seven current RCP polls in Ohio, the average Democratic advantage in party ID is 5.5 percent. That is, if we assume 2008 advantage was D+5, as explained above, then the average poll in Ohio right now assumes a 2008-level turnout. While anything is possible on November 6, there are not many people on either side thinking Obama can match his 2008 turnout advantage.
Early voting is not as positive for Obama as it was in 2008: This is the last point, but a huge one. Take this quotation, from CNN today: Four years ago, Democrats made up about 42 percent of the early and absentee vote while Republicans made up 22 percent. Through Wednesday, however, the margin has narrowed: Democrats account for 36 percent of the early and absentee vote while Republicans make up for 29 percent. The current polls have been seriously inflated for Democrats because theyre reporting Obama with 30+ percent leads in early voting (which is then automatically counted in likely voter samples), which seems to be vastly overestimating the Democratic advantage among these voters. As CNN explains, Romney is making huge gains from 2008.
Obama won in 2008 largely because of a healthy lead among independents and a highly enthusiastic bases turning out votes. Right now Romney is leading big with independents, has a more enthusiastic base, and is drawing crowds in Ohio that rival Obamas. While he is down 2.5 points in the polls, the average poll is assuming 2008 turnout which is unlikely to repeat itself this year. Adding the fact that early voting is trending more Republican than in 2008, there is a lot of reason for optimism that this race is much closer than the current polls suggest. Not bad for a candidate who was declared dead in the state just a few weeks ago.
Gents, here is the recognition of the trends you’ve been seeing, and LS, thanks for getting it in front of people in the media.
Mod, I screwed up the title - can you remove the duplicated words, please? Thanks!
Election day is YET.
Ohio was a KKK and union stronghold and has been Dim for decades. Many swallowed thier “roots” to vote for Zero because he was on their side of the aisle. I have in-laws there and it was enlightening to talk with them during a vacation a couple months ago. I would hazard that Ohio is really R-51 O-47 with 2% undecided. Of course, I thought that Palin would put McPain in the win column so what do I know? (rhetorical - no response necessary unless it is really witty and humorous).
Kudos for the NRO mention.
I actually think a sizable amount of those Democrat early ballots are voting for Romney, which will make it an even bigger win for Romney in Ohio.
No such thing as a MSM. The DLEMM - Dominant Liberal Establishment Mass Media - is composed almost entirely of leftists. Leftists aren't mainstream. Stop referring to them as if they are.
National Review is no longer what is was when Buckley was the editor but they certainly aren't part of the DLEMM.
The other thing to consider is the D/R/I split in 2010. It’s a non-presidential year but it is a more recent sample and the election saw many Republicans surprisingly swept into office.
Excellent article. Take data over a poll any day.
I live in Ohio- Cincy to be exact - in the city - near UC - near Xavier...I can say anecdotely that the enthusiasm isn’t there like 2008; no buzz - AND NO ONE HAS knocked on my door for votes!!! I had 10 people by now in 2008.
No way no how is any poll accurate...we conservatives/libertarians/whatevers simply hang up on pollsters simply don’t answer simply want to be silent majority and put 0bummer out on his keester in a couple weeks...he can live in his miserable life with Mooshell and their weird relationship like Clinton...$$$ ain’t gonna make him happy in Hawaii with his lifetime pension and commie circle of friends...
Point is, Ohio is going to Romney. These folks near me with their signs in their yards ain’t gonna crawl across broken glass like they did in 2008...but I will.
Not only is this graf critical, but it omits an opportunity to ask the question -- when has early voting sustained a movement election? When has early voting ever overcome a 52% PV? Or less! 2004: we've heard this shit before. Did Kerry win Ohio? Don't get me started on that...
The final margin of Bush's Ohio victory was 126,885, just under the population of Dayton (166,179) as Ohio's 7th-largest city. It was a substantial Ohio win by Bush in '04 by any measure.
To illustrate: the number of votes that Kerry lost Ohio by was much greater than the number of votes needed by Bush to have taken WI, PA, MI, and NH in a Reagan-like sweep -- in fact, less than 100,000.
Early voting is a f...ing unicorn and is going to get slaughtered in this election.
Republicans generally were still reeling from the backlash against the Taft debacle in 2006, and they lost two longheld seats in Congress plus the statehouse majority in 2008. GOP was dispirited and lackadaisical which also meant in addition to an anemic turnout, they were conceding the indies to Obama-- who went after them aggressively.
Almost the total oppposite situation holds today.
Romney will win OH next month. Only the brain dead Nate Silver and the MSM continue to assure us Obama can still win - yeah, sure.
The early voting in OH looks very good, compared to 2008.
Sorry, not going to be witty. McLame sunk himself when he “suspended” his campaign to concentrate on the financial meltdown. Plain supercharged his lackluster effort and it took a concerted effort from comedians and the MSM to paint her as a dunderhead. Plain was the only one running in 2008 with “gravitas.”
I don’t. I think it’s about 85% D for Zero, about 93-95% R for Romney. That in itself is big enough.
Ohio has been a bellwether state, voting with the winner every time since 1964. It has voted republican in 7 of the last 12 elections. As of 2011 the workforce is 13% union, mostly government workers. The demographics are 82% white, 12% black and 3% hispanic(regardless of race).
Obamas last, best hope is vote fraud.
I live in the Akron area, a solidly Dimocrat city. Every street in our neighborhood has at least one property with up to a dozen Dim yard signs...but I have yet to see even one Obama sign in the mix.
Either they are so sure of victory that they saved money on the signs, or the homeowners are running away from the Obama campaign.
Even with this area being solid Dem territory, I have observed more Romney signs than Obama signs.
Ohio will come down to ground game. It always does. That’s why it’s always a swing state. Republican enthusiasm bodes well for republican ground game. But the problem with ground game is that workers can’t rely on good news to the extent it causes them to lean back and rest a spell. It needs to presented as motivation and not as triumphalism.
Tony, what impact will John Kasich have? I remember reading a year or so ago that he was the “most unpopular governor” but that may have been false information. I’ve also read that his popularity has improved as some of his ideas have proven to be effective.
It seems that a state that elected a Republican governor in a tough economy would have learned something, and so do it again on the national level.
It’s the same here! And I’ve noticed that all the Dem signs are mysteriously empty of ANY party identification.
I can say anecdotely that the enthusiasm isnt there like 2008
I live in a deep blue state and work around a bunch of liberals and I can say the same thing. The persistent unemployment and sad economic realities of the past four years have taken their toll. The thrill is gone.
“I dont. I think its about 85% D for Zero, about 93-95% R for Romney. That in itself is big enough.”
I’ll take that!
I live in NYC area and there is literally nothing whatsoever. No bumper stickers, no yard signs, nothing!
OH MY! ( I was doing an Eyeore thing about Ohio, and then I read this!)
I guess it doesn’t matter if there are signs around NYC - they are going blue regardless.
“I never thought OH was a lock for the demholes.”
This is a good point — I keep hearing and reading all this stuff about how everybody assumed the race was a “lock” for Obama only until the first debate a few weeks ago. This is complete and utter BS.
I don’t think many people around here have ever believed Obama was a lock to win — we all realized that a poll that oversamples Dems +13 is simply not reflective of reality.
I would concede that Romney’s momentum was super-charged after the 1st debate and he is likely running away with it now (though no one in the LSM would be willing to admit it). But before the 1st debate, I think Romney still had a slight edge if the polls would have had realistic samples.
Analysis of the Fox Ohio poll result from Rebalance:
“That is with LVs sampled with D’s + 8% - 42%D and 34%R. Obama won Ohio by 4% in 08 with D’s + 6% in Ohio exit polls. Romney is destroying Obama among independents 55% to 29%. With Romney where he is nationally there is zero chance that the D turnout in Ohio will exceed 2008. In the absence of other factors that can move the electorate there is no way Romney loses Ohio. When rebalanced to Ds and Rs even up as a baseline, I have Romney +5.48%
Another powerful point is that the poll has D’s +1% over R’s in party allegiance and D’s+1% in net crossovers - Not Going to Happen. Both categories will be +2% Rs minimum. So even if the Indie breakdown is high there is plenty of room.”
Romney will win OH next month”
I think he will and I think Romney will win the election.
the ‘no tossups’ map has Romney winning enough EVs that all he needs now is Ohio - he’s got FL, NC, VA, and CO.
I believe the media is deliberately skewing Ohio because if they DIDNT they would have to write a “ROmney leads, Obama behind” narrative.
Quinnipiniac is surveying Ohio today, in conjunction with CBS. They do call cell phones. Long survey, compared to others I’ve taken.
Great article.... I was concerned about the “early voting” and its been stated that Obama’s campaigned had focused on this from a the start. From the numbers, it looks like Romney beat him to the punch.
obama will admit he’s from Kenya then be elected Sec General of the U.N. And Bill Clinton’s head will finally explode.
Ohio is a near tie and always was, period. Anyone who believed Osama would win it by 10 points rides the short bus.
OH is no longer all that poll: given the fact that Romney has been tied or down by 1% in the last three OH polls, all three of which oversampled Democrats by ridiculous margins (the PPP poll, where Romney trailed by 1%, was a D+8 poll in which Romney won more Dems than Obama won Republicans and in which Romney led big among indies), I think that Romney is up by 3% and climbing. Another way to look at it: Romney is up by like 4%-6% in national polls with realistic samples, and the last time that a Republican presidential nominee underperformed in OH by more than 2% compared to his national vote percentage was in 1872 (Grant’s reelection). There is no way that Romney could be doing much worse in OH than he is nationally.
Cue Randy Quaid from “Independence Day”: “I been sayin’ it and sayin’ it——ain’t I been sayin’ it’”
all that poll = all that close
This is what I posted last week about Ohio
National: Obama 52.87 McCain 45.60
Ohio: Obama 51.38 McCain 46.80
National: Bush 50.73 Kerry 48.27
Ohio: Bush 50.81 Kerry 48.71
National: Bush 47.87 Gore 48.27 Nader 2.73
Ohio: Bush 49.97 Gore 48.71 Nader 2.5
National: Clinton 49.23 Dole 40.72 Perot 8.4
Ohio: Clinton 47.38 Dole 41.02 Perot 10.66
National: Clinton 43.01 Bush 37.45 Perot 18.91
Ohio: Clinton 40.18 Bush 38.35 Perot 20.98
National: Bush 53.37 Dukakis 45.65
Ohio: Bush 55.00 Dukakis 44.15
National: Reagan 58.77 Mondale 40.56
Ohio: Reagan 58.90 Mondale 40.14
National: Reagan 50.75 Carter 41..01 Anderson 6.61
Ohio: Reagan 51.51 Carter 40.99 Anderson 5.94
National: Carter 50.08 Ford 48.02
Ohio: Carter 48.92 Ford 48.65
National: Nixon 60.67 McGovern 37.52
Ohio: Nixon 59.63 McGovern 38.07
You could have kept going back through 1876 and found similar results. : )
I think Romney currently is up by 3% in OH and by 4% nationally.
I too live in Ohio...in the Akron, Canton, Massillon triangle. For what it is worth, I have had many phone calls backing Republican candidates and Republican issues. I have had no similar Democrat calls until last night announcing a Biden visit to the area this week.
The Obama TV ads here are all regurgated whine from his debate lies. I do not think people are buying that.
I have talked with many people, both Pubbies and Dims, and the consensous seems to be much stronger support for Romney than for Obama.
For what it’s worth, I think Ohio is not going to be in the Obama camp on Nov 6, and I also think that Romney’s margin in other ‘toss-up’ states will make any challenge ala Florida 2000 moot. Nothing short of an EO on Nov 7 declaring martial law and voiding the election could help him...but that would get him canned before Jan 20.
Hopefully you’ll be able to quote Randy again on January 20: “All right, Mr. President, here we go!”
Romney wins Ohio 51-47. You heard it here. #There’sThat47PercentAgain
Another point is in 2008 I’d be surprised if more Republicans didn’t vote for Obama then Democrats voted for McCain. This would cut the edge down even further, meaning that there was less than a 5% edge for Democrats.