The early voting math is creating a problem for Mitt Romney. Obama is piling up such large margins that Romney will have to get 54%-60% of the votes on Election Day in Iowa, Nevada, and North Carolina in order to win each state.
In a conference call with reporters today, Obama campaign manager Jim Messina described the electoral lay of the land as, “We have the math. They have the myth,” and accused the Romney campaign of, “trying to sell illusion and delusion.” The early voting numbers reveal that the Obama campaign piling up big margins in the battleground states that are going to make the Election Day math very difficult for Romney to overcome.
The Romney campaign always had fewer paths to 270 electoral votes, and early voting is making those paths to victory very, very narrow. Democrats already lead in Iowa by 60,000 early votes. Democrats lead by 30,000 early votes in Nevada, and have cast 45% of the ballots, compared to 37% for the Republicans as of October 27. In North Carolina, Democrats lead early voting by 305,000.
The most troubling of the three states for the Romney campaign is Iowa. If the early voting turnout continues to its current pace, by the end of this week 45% of the total ballots in the election may have already been cast. If Obama maintains his lead at that level of turnout, the math becomes virtually impossible for Romney in Iowa on Election Day.
The reality of the Electoral College math is that if Obama wins Ohio, Iowa, and Nevada, plus the states that he is expected to win, the president will be reelected.
The reason why Romney has turned his attention towards Michigan and Pennsylvania is because things are looking bad for him in Ohio. A new CBS News/Quinnipiac poll has Obama with the same 5 point lead in the Buckeye State that he had last week.
The Romney campaign can keep spinning and blustering about their momentum, but behind closed doors his campaign appears to be increasingly realizing that Ohio is not going to go their way. This is why they are dumping millions of dollars in ads into Michigan and Pennsylvania. If Romney can’t replace Ohio’s 18 electoral college votes with another big state, the results in Virginia, North Carolina, Florida, and Colorado will be irrelevant for him.
It is easy to see why Republicans were so desperate to restrict early voting in the swing states. The Obama early voting machine has been getting out the vote and delivering the results. However, all early voting does is put the president in a good position to win. Voters still have to go to the polls on Election Day and support their candidate.
This election is not over by a long shot, but if Obama supporters show up to vote on Election Day, and keep these battleground state tallies close, Obama’s early voting advantage will put the president over the top.
Mitt Romney’s math problem is difficult right now, but it becomes impossible if Obama supporters show up at the polls on in 6 days.
Image: Sam Roberts / Times-News