Michael Barone is America’s “one man decision desk,” with credibility on elections far beyond that of anyone else working the field in America today.
Which is why Michael’s bold Washington Examiner column from yesterday cut through all the spin from Chicago and all the blather from MSNBC, and struck President Obama supporters in their gut.
Barone, having surveyed all the polling data from every source and all the early voting numbers from all the states, sees Mitt Romney rolling up 315 Electoral College votes, including the states of Ohio, Virginia, Florida, Colorado, Iowa, New Hampshire, Wisconsin –and Pennsylvania!
Other evidence is rolling in to back up Barone’s prediction, most especially the not-friendly-to-Romney Washington Post tracking poll which put the governor a point ahead of the president on Friday night, a post-Sandy sign of a momentum swing towards Romney.
He who surges last surges best in a presidential campaign, and it appears that Romney has indeed caught the last big wave.
Romney’s amazing “closing argument speech” in Wisconsin yesterday is the sort of performance that flows from a candidate who knows he is winning. The enormous crowds that are greeting Romney and his running mate Paul Ryan wherever they travel tell the same story, and the pictures from this afternoon’s rally at Fiddler’s Green in Colorado promise to send the same message.
If Romney delivers a blowout rally in Pennsylvania Sunday a shocked political establishment will look up from Nate Silver’s “model” and begin to realize that they have missed something big.
The Hill’s A.B. Stoddard speculated on the Fox News Channel Friday afternoon that the aftermath of Sandy has resulted in spreading dismay which is further dampening an already depressed American spirit, thus increasing the desire for a change and what Romney calls “a fresh start.”
Indeed, the suffering and misery from New Jersey and New York do underscore how tough the country has had it for the past four years, just as the new unemployment number did Friday morning.
That 7.9% number is higher than when President Obama took office, a definitive declaration of failure on the economic front, one that reminds us of the president’s “one term proposition,” prediction of years ago.
Even as the legions of the president’s enthusiastic supporters have melted away, new armies of energized Roman Catholics and Evangelicals are mobilizing across the country to defend their religious freedom, under direct assault from the president and his team of ideologues at HHS. They are joined by small businessmen and women from across the nation who have had it with mandates and rules, a mind-number tidal wave of regulatory overkill that is driving them down.
Adding to the motivation of the anti-Obama vote is simmering anger with the Manhattan-Beltway media elites obvious double standard, their near-uniform commitment to keep the president safe from scrutiny on issues from Benghazi to Fast and Furious. The White House press corps, with a few noble exceptions, has become a palace guard, and voters know this and deeply resent the media messengers who have circled their network wagons around the president they invested in so deeply four years ago.
When Romney took the stage in Wisconsin yesterday, he was joined by Bart Starr, a man understood to be a winner not just in Wisconsin but across the country. (The video of the speech is at HughHewitt.com.) Romney isn’t easing off anymore than Starr did when Lombardi prowled the sidelines. He and Ryan are closing strong, and hope by doing so to bring along an increased GOP majority in the House and a Senate under the leadership of Mitch McConnell.
To accomplish this last thing they will need the help of voters in Indiana rallying to Richard Mourdock, the latest target of a media obsessed with abortion rights absolutism even as the country struggles to avoid the fiscal cliff.
They will especially need Ohio voters to pull the lever not just for Romney and Ryan but also for the state’s treasurer Josh Mandel, a Marine Corps combat veteran and a rising star who could bring vigor to a Senate much in need of energy and a long-range vision.
As Barone’s conclusions make clear, the momentum is with Mitt, and thus the country has a real chance for the fresh start it so desperately needs.