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Thursday, October 25, 2012

What It's Like on the Ground in Swing States

Posted by on Thu, Oct 25, 2012 at 10:59 AM

The Denver Post has a good story looking at the organizational strengths of both presidential campaigns in the swing states.

Obama has 131 field offices in Ohio, while Romney has 40. Obama also has "staging locations," which are operated out of volunteers' homes. The advantage is those volunteers know their neighborhoods well. While Obama has a large get-out-the-vote operation with a ton of field offices, Romney doesn't have one at all, Ball reports. Romney has outsourced its ground game to the Republican National Committee. That way, the RNC was able to build up its turnout efforts while Romney was still fighting the primary in March.

Between this and Nate Silver's post from this morning about Mitt Romney's false "momentum" narrative, Democrats have no reason to feel depressed anymore. It's okay to feel nervous—elections are scary things—but there's no reason to feel like this election is out of your hands. Andrew Sullivan's histrionics feel like they were published a million years ago.


Comments (17) RSS

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Geocrackr 1
So what does Rmoney have in Ohio? Oh yeah -- HIS FUCKING SON OWNS THE VOTING MACHINES!
Posted by Geocrackr on October 25, 2012 at 11:05 AM · Report this
Will in Seattle 2
@1 shhh. Don't tell anyone. The default machine password for those machines is ninja.
Posted by Will in Seattle on October 25, 2012 at 11:14 AM · Report this
An important point that I wish you would do a post about: Romney is sending Ryan to Alabama. One theory is that Romney wants to win the popular vote in an effort to discredit Obama or maybe even take the White House (unlikely). But leaving aside Romney's machinations, the point remains that a popular/electoral split is much more likely than usual in this election. That would be a very bad outcome even if Obama clearly retains the presidency in those circumstances.

So long story short, even people in solid blue states should make sure to (A) vote, and (B) don't waste your vote on a third-party candidate.
Posted by minderbender on October 25, 2012 at 11:14 AM · Report this
Theodore Gorath 4
I am aware that early voting tends to skew democratic, but with the returns already coming in, Ohio is essentially out of Mitt's grasp, unless he has an unreal showing on election day (something like 80% of the vote).

Furthermore, if Romney loses Ohio, he basically has no chance. It would take a hell of an October surprise to give Mitt any real chance.

Of course, Republican voter fraud is an unknown variable.
Posted by Theodore Gorath on October 25, 2012 at 11:15 AM · Report this
@4, most of the swing states favor Obama, but only by relatively small margins. And Romney continues to lead (very slightly) in national polls. So complacency is definitely not called for, in any sense.
Posted by minderbender on October 25, 2012 at 11:19 AM · Report this
I'm not worried that Obama hasn't persuaded enough voters to re-elect him, even though 2000 and 2004 taught me not to expect too much from my fellow Americans. I'm worried about thugs, from state officials selectively applying voter ID requirements to ground-level bullies harassing people at polling places, trying to keep them from voting for him.
Posted by Prettybetsy on October 25, 2012 at 11:25 AM · Report this
Things are busy busy busy in Colorado. At a couple of recent campaign events:

* Romney/Ryan at Red Rocks: Capacity crowd of 9,450 people, including Kid Rock. R/R gave out 25,000 tickets, which led to huge lines of people who couldn't get in and many traffic problems.

* Obama at City Park in Denver: 16,000 people attended on a cloudy, coldish Wednesday afternoon. He'll probably be back before election day.

The TV and radio ads are non-stop. Too many ads, nobody's paying attention to them any more. Too damn many phone calls, too. I'm advising people to vote early so the phone calls will stop. More flyers than I've ever seen. I think that most of the money spent in the race is going towards TV ads, which seems a waste since most people say they're ignoring them. More money doesn't seem to be making a huge difference, but it's not huge differences they're fighting over here, they're fighting to sway one or two percent.
Posted by rainbird on October 25, 2012 at 11:37 AM · Report this
Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn 8
Well, ultimately, we're all going to die. You, me, our families. All of our friends will die. When enough time goes by, we'll be forgotten. You can't avoid the inevitable, just delay it for what, in the long run, is an insignificant time. Democrats should feel depressed about that.
Posted by Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn on October 25, 2012 at 11:52 AM · Report this
I moved from Nashville to Denver this year. The difference in political ad saturation is astounding. Interestingly, I registered as independent, but while I've received four door hangers and one canvasser visit from Team Obama, I've had no contact from the Romney campaign, so it seems that Obama's ground game is better. Although it may (probably does) vary by neighborhood and town, and my perception is that Romney has more TV ads (though that may just be because they annoy me more).
Posted by Christy O on October 25, 2012 at 11:53 AM · Report this
Dr_Awesome 10
@8 (unpronounceable name) Cue Monty Python's "Always Look on the Bright Side of Life!"

(Shameless attempt to cheer you up and show I'm not always full of anger, after mis-numbering my post last night.)
Posted by Dr_Awesome on October 25, 2012 at 12:02 PM · Report this
@1:, says "FALSE"...
Posted by COMTE on October 25, 2012 at 12:13 PM · Report this
@11 read all the way to the end. But overall I agree that this is a needless distraction, the important thing is to get out there and vote and do your best to encourage other people to do likewise.
Posted by minderbender on October 25, 2012 at 12:30 PM · Report this
Urgutha Forka 13
I live in Westminster, Colorado (bedroom suburb just north of Denver).

I get campaign mail pretty much everyday, sometimes one from each candidate (and always glossy card stock, not cheap shit). This has been going on for a couple months. I can't say how many mailers I've gotten. A Lot.

Campaign ads on tv non-stop, minimum one ad per commercial break, usually multiple ads back to back.

It's definitely crazy.

I was in Florida for the 2008 election. Pretty crazy there too, but I recall it being way heavily skewed towards Obama ads. I rarely saw McCain ads/flyers/mailers. The Obama people came to my door five times (that was actually a little annoying).

In NYC for the 2004 elections. I don't think I got any mailers or flyers at all. Not surprisingly.
Posted by Urgutha Forka on October 25, 2012 at 12:35 PM · Report this
I'm up in an unincorporated area north west of Denver and have gotten sooooo much pro Romney campaign mail, but only one pro Obama piece of mail. I get daily robo calls, but mostly about local issues or making sure I'm registered to vote. I'm not affiliated with either party, so don't know why theres such an imbalance in the mail.

My friends, family and I have already voted. Normally theres some apathy towards voting but it seems like absolutely everyone I know is voting this time and it seems to be largely out of fear of the changes that Romney could bring about.
Posted by swing state voter on October 25, 2012 at 1:19 PM · Report this
Geocrackr 15
@11 - I stand corrected, thank you. Unfortunately, replacing "Rmoney's son" w/ "Republican contributor w/ direct ties to the Rmoney campaign" doesn't really ease my qualms any.
Posted by Geocrackr on October 25, 2012 at 2:04 PM · Report this
Big Matt G 16
I live in Aurora, east of Denver, (yes that Aurora) and I have been getting mailers for about 2 months. Approximately 60% Romney, 40% Obama. However, when I shake my Obama sign at traffic in my neighborhood, I am getting almost 90% positive reactions from people that give any reaction. Apparently, my nighborhood really, really likes the President!
Posted by Big Matt G on October 25, 2012 at 2:35 PM · Report this
MarkyMark 17
People who pay the slightest attention to Andrew Sullivan are as foolish as those who pay any attention to Seattle Times editorials.
Posted by MarkyMark on October 25, 2012 at 4:56 PM · Report this

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