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Thursday, October 30, 2008

Analyst Says McCain Can Still Win With "Perfect Storm"

One analyst of the 2008 Presidential Elections is saying John McCain could still win, if he gets what is described as a "perfect storm." Essentially, the analyst is saying events will have to break McCain's way over these last five days, and then on Election Night, all the key battleground states will need to tip his way:

John McCain still could win.

It would take what one analyst calls a "perfect storm" of events breaking his way in the campaign's final days, but he could come from behind, overtake Barack Obama and pull off the greatest upset in 60 years.

He'd have to squeeze out more support from independents, score higher with his "Joe the Plumber" warning about Obama's tax and economic polices, and hope that enough undecided voters swing his way to help him sweep almost all the states that now are considered tossups.

Difficult? Yes. Impossible? No.

While he's still trailing, polls show McCain within reach and gaining, even if only slightly, both nationally and in some key battleground states.

"Sure, McCain can win," veteran conservative strategist Greg Mueller said. "It's not going to be easy. But it can be done."

A new Ipsos/McClatchy Poll this week found McCain trailing nationally by 6 percentage points, 2 points closer than the week before. The poll also found 8 percent of likely voters still undecided, enough to deliver the election to the Arizona senator if they moved to him as a bloc.

McCain also has closed the gap in several key battleground states, according to new polls released Wednesday by Quinnipiac University. In Florida, he trailed by 2 points, narrowing the gap from 5 points the week before. In Ohio, he went from 14 points back to 9 points behind.

For McCain to win, he must hold all the states that went for President Bush four years ago, which would be enough to give him 286 Electoral College votes and victory. He could even lose one midsized Bush state, such as Virginia, which has 13 electoral votes, and still have more than the 270 Electoral College votes needed to win.

To be sure, that won't be easy. Obama leads in many of those states, including Florida and Ohio narrowly. And McCain doesn't have any good prospects right now for offsetting the loss of a "red" state; he doesn't lead in a single state that went Democratic in 2004.

"It would take a perfect storm. Everything has to break his way," said Dennis Goldford, a political scientist at Drake University in Iowa, a Bush state in 2004 where McCain now trails. "All of a sudden, all of those states that are close or within the margin of error would have to tip back to McCain." . . . . . (More)


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