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September 2012
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@abulsme Updates from 2012-09-06 (UTC)

  • Home from work. Did I hear some crazy God and Jerusalem stuff happened at #DNC Sigh. They shouldn’t have changed anything. Bleh. #
  • The toddler is asleep. Putting on #DNC while I clean a bit. And mayhaps tweet a bit. Fluke on now I see. #
  • And lots of people locked out of #DNC too I hear. Fun stuff. #
  • I was busy with something else, but looks like the Clinton stuff has started. #
  • I hated him while he was in office, but he has grown on me since then. #
  • And here is Clinton. Always liked the song too. #
  • He really does know how to work a crowd. Saw him in person in 1993. He can really get you. #
  • Tivo wants to change to record Caillou. No!!! #
  • Sounds like he is losing his voice. #
  • I’m guessing that is one of those stats where net vs gross and how you count makes a big diff. (Jobs created R vs D) #
  • Saying good things about older Republicans. Good stuff. #
  • The old sane GOP. #
  • Even GWB on hurricane stuff though. He wasn’t one of those old R’s. :-) #
  • RT @poniewozik Bill Clinton just got the Democratic National Convention to applaud George W Bush #
  • RT @JimPethokoukis Man, would Clinton love to be president again #
  • This stuff riffs right on Obama’s old not Red not Blue stuff. Important stuff. #
  • RT @anamariecox Like, whole paragraphs and sections, he’s adding. Prompter person is scrambling a little. #dnc2012 #
  • Hillary callout. All about working with people Obama doesn’t fully agree with. Team of Rivals stuff. #
  • Signal skipped. Missed a few sentences I think. Bleh. #
  • RT @HuntsmanAbby We need “Partnership over partisanship in Washington DC.” #DNC2012 #Clinton #
  • MT @ZekeJMiller Clinton summing up GOP argument: we left him a total mess he hasn’t cleaned it up fast enough so fire him and put us back in #
  • “There they go again!” Quoting Reagan. Awesome. #
  • “Are we better off than when he took office?” Hits it straight on. (Not 4 years though, important diff.) #
  • RT @mikemadden Bill Clinton improvising on live television is pretty much the reason they should keep having political conventions. #
  • RT @BorowitzReport Clinton: “Now I’d like to read the phone book in its entirety.” (standing ovation) #
  • RT @greenfield64 No one–no one alive–has a better time in the political arena than this guy. #
  • RT @Alyssa_Milano Bill Clinton, I love you so much. Like crazy amounts of love. #
  • RT @ericspiegelman The GOP considers Ryan a “star.” Compare that to the Democratic stars. It’s like the Daytime Emmys vs. the Oscars. #
  • MT @sullydish Brilliant and core point: difference between Obama and GOP is that Obama can compromise and the Republicans will not. #
  • RT @Mudflats Clinton keeps going off “script.” :) You’d never know it. Audience is eating it up. #dnc2012 #
  • Twitter saying we are only halfway… #
  • Alex just woke up. :-) #
  • Starting to feel like a lull. My attention drifting. Waiting for the inevitible crescendo at the end. #
  • Alex on lap. #
  • RT @owillis seriously, how did anyone ever think bob dole had a shot against this guy? #
  • RT @FranklinFoer Don’t stop thinking about tomorrow…cause that’s when this will end. #
  • MT @sullydish Lost count of number of times he said, “Now, LISTEN …” We are. Telling a story Obama has so far failed to tell effectively. #
  • Alex tried to pause Tivo. I yelled No! He cried. Oops. #
  • He is happy again, but distracting. Hard to listen to Clinton with toddler on lap. #
  • Goes after the fact checker line. Good. That was basically saying “We’ll lie whenever we need to.” #
  • RT @mattyglesias “One more thing…” Clinton reveals 7 inch iPad and LTE iPhone. #
  • RT @Mudflats Someone is getting taken to Bill Clinton’s wood shed. And that’s a hell of a wood shed. #sleepwellMitt #dnc2012 #
  • Bored now. RT @BuzzFeedBen This is moving from “greatest speech ever” to gong territory pretty fast. #
  • MT @AshleyRParker 15 min over his allotted time Clinton says, “Let’s talk about the debt…” and the crowd eagerly settles in for more. #DNC #
  • Coming up on the rousing finale I assume. Good. :-) #
  • Fair. OK RT @smotus A former president is explaining politics, history, and economics. Quit whining about the length of the speech. #DNC2012 #
  • And he is done… #
  • And O. #
  • This had more policy stuff, good policy stuff. And good hits on Romney. But Michelle’s hit home emotionally more. #
  • Roll Call now? #
  • Concludes the nominations? What about Terry? Rogers? Wolfe? The convict guy? No? #
  • RT @BuzzFeedAndrew It’s going to be awkward when the West Virginia delegation gives delegates to federal inmate Keith Judd. #
  • I wonder if any of the others who theoretically got delegates will actually get called out. #
  • RT @daveweigel Yeah, Hillary interrupted the roll call and asked for it. RT @reidepstein: Didn’t they do this by acclimation last time? #
  • @daveweigel @reidepstein But then they still did the full count behind the scenes and reported the results. #
  • RT @KrystalBall1 Steve Schmidt: “I wish to God as a Republican that we had someone who could do that.” #DNC2012 #
  • MT @BuzzFeedBen RT @joehagansays: Repub @alexcast (Alex Castellanos) says on CNN that Clinton’s speech probably just reelected Barack Obama. #
  • RT @BenariLee “And that’s how go off script, son.” -Bill Clinton to Clint Eastwood #DNC #
  • MT @DouthatNYT This is why Romney’s evasiveness/lack of creativity on policy was/is so risky. Leaves Rs *wide* open to Clintonian attacks. #
  • RT @jeffjarvis Brilliant point RT @JamesFallows: Clinton said more nice things about GW Bush than all RNC speakers combined #
  • MT @ericspiegelman When Dems go off script, they refute every point in the GOP policy. When Rs go off script, they yell at furniture. #
  • C-Span got confused by the half vote from Dems abroad, stopped updating delegate count. Several delegations later, gave up and took it down. #
  • RT @dandrezner RT @kohenari: Krauthammer on Clinton’s speech: “Giant swing and a miss” “Not going to move the needle whatsoever” #
  • @ZekeJMiller RT @peterbakernyt: If Pres Obama is reelected, he doesn’t actually become the 45th president. #
  • @ZekeJMiller @peterbakernyt Unless he loses this time, then runs again in 2020 and wins. But then he’d be 44th and 46th. Oh well. No 45th. #
  • @abulsme @zekejmiller @peterbakernyt Uh, or 2016. :-) #
  • MT @HuntsmanAbby Clinton reinforces underlying theme Americans want to be united not divided. Great play to capture mods/indeps #DNC2012 #
  • RT @cspan Infographic: Bill Clinton’s Length of #DNC Speeches in Minutes Since 1988 #cspanDNC http://t.co/DU8RX7va #
  • MT @politicoroger If Obama pulls off hat trick tomorrow – Michelle, Bill, Barack – this will be 1 of greatest convs of modern times #DNC2012 #
  • RT @daveweigel Indiana, the 2008 blue state that nobody even pretends Obama can win again. #
  • RT @DouthatNYT Clinton’s speech nominating Hillary in 2016 is going to be a doozy, isn’t it? #
  • MT @BenjySarlin Obama’s should be pretty impressive too. RT @DouthatNYT: Clinton’s speech nominating Hillary in 2016 is going to be a doozy #
  • Dem nom in 2016 pretty much is Hillary’s if she wants it. Question is if she wants it. So far says no, but… #
  • Alex asking me VERY nicely to stop my show (Roll Call at #DNC and play trains. I said no. #NewsGeek #
  • RT @aburnspolitico This may be the first time in 2012 that I’ve had trouble getting a Romney statement that mentions Bill Clinton … #
  • @FHQ As in Tampa, there is no tally of total delegate votes on a board anywhere here in Charlotte. #dnc2012 #
  • MT @ForecasterEnten Interesting to see if/what type of bounce there will be out of the DNC. Some people might be getting ahead of themselves #
  • MT @mattyglesias Clinton is good but keep in mind that O is so good at formal political speeches that he won nom on otherwise thin resume. #
  • Passes to Ohio to put over the top.. #
  • And we are over 2777! Obama is officially the nominee. #
  • RT @GarrettQuinn RT @DrewHampshire: Vermin Supreme getting no love at the Democratic Convention tonight. There’s still time, New Hampshire. #
  • MT @BuzzFeedAndrew RT @sarahkliff: Clinton’s prepared remarks: 3136 words. Remarks as delivered: 5895 words (counting audience cheers). #
  • RT @drgrist I know I’m biased, but the contrast between these two conventions has just been stunning. #
  • CSpan delegate counter back by the way. Guess they eventually figured out that half delegate thing. #
  • RT @KyleTrygstad How off-script did Clinton go? This much… #dnc2012 http://t.co/FmKSlh2z #
  • MT @AriMelber Clinton is *not* done he just took the stage at an afterparty here “I don’t have much to add to what I said tonight,” but.. #
  • Ashley Judd! Woo! #
  • RT @AriMelber Bill Clinton just now: I said things that Obama can’t say becuase it would sound defensive. (At after-party, paraphrasing) #
  • MT @NiallStanage If O is onform tomorrow 2012 is going to be a really great control experiment in trying to answer “Do conventions matter?” #
  • Getting close to the end of the roll call now. #DNC #
  • Tweets coming in a lot slower now than during Clinton’s speech for some reason. :-) #
  • 114 of 120 for Obama in Washington state. 6 abstentions? #
  • Or did I hear wrong? #
  • Or maybe those delegates just left early. :-) #
  • Roll Call over! #
  • Official total? C-Span has 5415. #
  • So that would be 138 non-votes, right? 5553 delegates total I think. #
  • Motion makes it officially unanimous. #
  • Hall is almost empty. If I was there I’d still be on the floor damn it! #
  • Gavel to Gavel darn it! #
  • RT @BuzzFeedAndrew Wow, looks like everyone stuck around until the end… http://t.co/47prCEBk #
  • None of the other guys ended up getting their delegates. I feel sorry for Terry, Rogers, Wolfe and Judd. Oh well. Maybe 2016! #
  • Feel sorry for the benediction guy too. #EmptyHall #
  • Motion to recess. Ayes have it! #
  • RT @PlanetDr I’m just gonna put this out there…only Bill Clinton could get #arithmetic trending… #
  • Switching from C-Span to MSNBC just to see some talking heads for a bit. But Twitter during was more fun. #
  • Reading – Bill Clinton Shows How It’s Done (Molly Ball) http://t.co/wZS2WkOW #
  • OK. Enough talking heads. Time to walk the dog. #
  • Reading – Why Obama Is The Favorite (Taegan Goddard) http://t.co/HuumB4M9 #
  • RT @NASAVoyager2: Did you know? Apple’s smallest iPod nano, the 8GB, has ~100,000x the memory of the Voyager spacecraft. #
  • MT @AshleyJudd What fun & what an honor serving with the most diverse del from TN ever! Exhilarating night, now my dogs are barking (feet!). #
  • RT @PJ4MJJ Just saw that Bill Clinton’s still talking about Medicaid at the afterparty..lol! #
  • Reading – Clinton, Obama, and the Triumph of Substance (Jonathan Cohn) http://t.co/BPXhObSR #
  • Reading – Bill Clinton: wonk-in-chief (Ezra Klein) http://t.co/auezUl40 #
  • Reading – RNC Verdict: No Bounce (yet) [Drew, Votamatic] http://t.co/kgKq5EVM #
  • Reading – Huge Eruption on the Sun Revisited in Spectacular HD (Nancy Atkinson) http://t.co/i64DyCf8 #
  • BTW, Greenpapers has the final delegate count as 5424 Obama, 128 non-votes. http://t.co/KlviLKeJ Probably better than the C-Span count. #
  • Reading – No New Apple Television Products Coming in 2012 as Content Negotiations Stall Once Again (Eric Slivka) http://t.co/gYYhsQo8 #
  • Reading – Bill Clinton, playing `referee,’ makes strongest case yet for Obama’s reelection (Greg Sargent) http://t.co/Ir827EAF #
  • Reading – Alex Castellanos, GOP Strategist: Clinton Speech Was ‘Moment That Likely Reelected Obama’ (Sam Stein) http://t.co/Bfo8n84v #
  • Reading – Bill Clinton Wows ‘Em in Charlotte (Kevin Drum) http://t.co/FhwvhgHy #
  • Reading – Clinton’s Big Speech: Blog Reax (Andrew Sullivan) http://t.co/IFhSzl0u #
  • Reading – The Simple Case for Why Obama Is the Favorite (Nate Silver) http://t.co/aRBo65Tw #
  • Amazon Fire HD looking really sweet. With LTE! Knocking it out of the park. Going head to head with iPad now. This is going to be fun! #
  • Kyle Wagner: “And with that. Mic Drop. Bezos Out.” #
  • I don’t think anyone was expecting all of that. Boom! #
  • Your move Apple. #

Electoral College: Florida Flips Back to Obama

One change today.  Just barely Romney Florida becomes just barely Obama Florida:

Now, some of you may remember my commentary on August 22nd when Florida moved to Romney.  I mentioned that what pushed the average over to Romney was a poll showing a 14% lead for Romney…  which was way out of line with any polling in the previous year…  many sites that do poll analysis were just dropping it entirely as an outlier.  I explained that I just leave everything in, and figure outliers will wash themselves out on their own before too long.  That is exactly what happened here.  As soon as the outlier poll aged out of the “Last 5 Polls” that I use for my average, Florida popped right back to being (just barely) leaning Obama.  If I had simply excluded this poll, Obama’s lead in the five poll average would have dropped to 0.2%, but it would never have gone negative.

In any case, the five poll average now stands at an 0.8% Obama lead in Florida, so the state gets moved back into his column for the moment.  I will caution, as I always do, that even leads up to 5% can be extremely ephemeral under the right circumstances.  That is why I consider all states in that range as able to go either way pretty easily. A lead of less than 1%?  That really is completely up for grabs.  So nobody should read too much into Florida being just barely on one side of the line vs just barely on the other.  Either way, Florida is still looking like a tossup.

This does put the “current” model right back to where it has been most of the year though:

Romney Obama
Romney Best Case 317 221
Current Status 206 332
Obama Best Case 180 358

In the most recent episode of Curmudgeon’s Corner recorded yesterday and released today, I mentioned that my “gut feel” was that we have seen Romney’s post-primary high water mark, and that we’ll start seeing Obama gaining ground going forward from this point.  Despite today’s Florida change, the numbers don’t show that yet.  We only have a small amount of post-RNC state level polling, and of course no post-DNC state level polling since that event isn’t even done yet. The right set of things hitting the news and things could break rapidly in Romney’s direction.

In recent times though, challengers have usually lost ground between their convention and the election.  Nate Silver recently looked at this in detail.  Silver of course points out that this is not a universal rule.  1996 and 2008 both did not fit this pattern.  There is still lots of room for the daily ebb and flow of national and international events…  and campaign rhetoric…  to change the shape of this race.  Generally speaking though, if Romney follows the typical pattern, he is done.  To date he has never been ahead in this race.  He needs to be gaining ground to win.  He has no room for the sort of “normal” decline that Silver describes.

Romney needs something big to vault him into a clear lead.  His convention was one of the biggest chances for that, and so far it looks like if he got any boost, it was minimal.  Assuming we don’t see a very unexpected negative effect coming out of the Democratic convention that ends up helping Romney, this means Romney’s next big chances are the debates…  which usually don’t have much of an effect unless someone screws up…  or to just hope that Obama just gets pounded by bad news, economic or otherwise, that ends up eliminating Obama’s lead.

Romney could indeed win the debates decisively, or Obama could get hit by those waves of bad news…  and that would change things…  but like I said, my gut is saying the beginning of September will have marked Romney’s post-primary high water mark in my models.  So write that down.  I’m going out on that limb.  You can all call me on it when it proves to be completely wrong.  Which now that I’ve said it “out loud”, will almost certainly happen. :-)

Note: Chart and map from the Abulsme.com 2012 Electoral College Prediction page. Both assume Obama vs Romney with no strong third party candidate and show polling as it currently exists. Things will change before election day. On the map red is Romney, blue is Obama, gold states are too close to call. Lines on the chart represent how many more electoral votes a candidate would have than is needed to tie under several different scenarios. Up is good for Obama, Down is good for Romney.

Curmudgeon’s Corner: Into the Bad Zone

In the latest Curmudgeon’s Corner Sam and Ivan talk about:

  • Crazy Times / Polling Update
  • Republican Convention
  • Are You Better Off?
  • Apple vs Samsung

Recorded on 5 Sep 2012

Length this week – 1:05:18

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