Presidential Polls 2012: Why the Betting Man is Putting His Money On Obama With 6 Weeks to Go


With just over six weeks to go until Election Day, it is by no means clear that voters will receive any more information about how they will be governed in the next four years. Of course, there will be lots more about getting to stand under the falling balloons on November 6, incomprehensible tax returns, stealing from Medicare, European socialism and myriad other diversions.

At the Federal level, effective governance — otherwise known as problem solving — requires a delicate interplay among the President, the Senate and the House of Representatives. None of the meaningless plans or promises means anything without some level of cooperation by all three.

Over the next few days, we’ll look at the prospects for each. First the presidency.

According to Real Clear Politics, we are down to eight toss-up states with 100 electoral votes. Of these former Governor Romney needs 79 and President Obama needs 23.

Three former toss-ups now lean one way or the other: Missouri (10 electoral votes) to Romney; Wisconsin (10) to Obama; and Michigan (10) also to Obama.

Toss-up states are rarely exactly tied, but the difference – within the margin of sampling error – makes them too close to call. If allocated as they stand today, President Obama would win Nevada (6 electoral votes), Colorado (9), Iowa (6), Ohio (18), Virginia (13), Florida (29) and New Hampshire (4), while former Governor Romney would capture only North Carolina (15).

This 85-15 split of the toss-ups would give the president a comfortable 332 – 206 win and we’d all be in bed early on election night.

Intrade, a site where you trade political futures and where prognosticators vote with their wallets, has the odds at 71% to 29% favoring an Obama victory.

Snapshots more than six weeks in advance can be a fool’s errand because, in addition to the electoral map (the only factor considered here), there are the debates, advertising, possible new themes, third parties, ballot access and the all-important money that could change the outcome.

But, in our three-piece problem solver puzzle, as of today the better bet is to paint the White House blue.

Cross-posted at