Monday, November 5, 2012

Split Votes



If you live in NY State, your vote doesn’t matter a damn. Obama will take NY walking away. The same is true for California and Illinois. If you’re in those states, and like Mitt Romney, you might as well stay home on Tuesday; your vote is a waste of time.­  If you live in Texas or Arizona, and you think Obama deserves another four years, forget it; your vote’s a throw away.


There are few states where it will make a difference, but at the end of the day, the only thing that matters is what happens in Ohio. Once again, Ohio will determine who is going to be running the show for the next four years. That’s crazy.




State Population = 11.5mm – 3% of US total

State GDP = $500Bn – 3.7% of US total




Four years ago I voted for Obama. I thought he would make a difference. I supported his campaign with contributions. I carried his petitions during the primary. I got the vote out on Election Day. It’s hard to describe how disappointed I am. There is no way I’m going to vote for Obama again. But that doesn’t matter; I live in NY. I’m a protest voter for Romney. I’m voting knowing full well that the electoral votes in my state are going to Obama. Say I’m not alone. Now add in Sandy.


There are a large number of people who are displaced in one way or another in the northeast. The dislocations that the storm caused will have an influence on voter turnout in the region. Add into the mix, another weather problem. The same area that was hit with Sandy, is going get a Nor-easter on Wednesday. The talk from the weather guys is for 3-4 inches of rain, and more wind. After getting crushed by Sandy a week ago, many people will spend Tuesday worrying about storm preparation. They won’t be thinking of voting.

There are a hell of a lot of Democrats in NJ, NY and Ct. that might just stay away on Tuesday. I don’t think it will change anything as far as the electoral votes go. The states hit by Sandy (and the ones in the way of the next blow) will still end up with electoral ballots going to Obama. But I wonder if this combination of events will have a consequence on the (unimportant) popular vote.


It would not be unique if the electoral votes ended up different than the popular vote. That has happened in 1824, 1876, 1888 and of course, the big one in 2000 when Gore got 536,000 more votes than Bush.


With all this in mind, my election forecast:


- Obama will win the Electoral College (it will be close, but no tie).


- Romney will win the popular vote by more than 500K (the “Sandy Factor” will keep traditional NE Democratic voters at home).


- Ohio will prove to be the determining factor for the Electoral vote. The Ohio result will be very close. There will be recounts. There will be challenges. There will be questions raised about write-in ballots. (See report from Citi on this: Link)



-  It will take two weeks +  to resolve the election of 2012.


If the election plays out along these lines, the opportunity for post-election compromise will be lost. In this scenario, the most likely outcome is that nothing happens, and the country  falls off the fiscal cliff.


  1. If you lived in Ohio would you be voting for Romney?

    I’m not a Romney fan and I live in Texas. My protest vote went to Gary Johnson.

  2. That’s wrong that your vote doesn’t matter and to stay home. Sure, that may be true regarding the presidential vote in many states. But don’t forget about the state and local issues that are also being voted upon as well.

  3. If it’s a protest vote, and not an actual endorsement of a candidate you believe in, why not vote third party? Or, put another way, why not vote your values (which I assume will be more closely aligned with a third party)? You’ve already acknowledged your vote is meaningless — all you have left is your values.

    I’ll be voting Gary Johnson.

  4. Much like you, Bruce, I was a proud Obama voter four years ago, and am positively disgusted with him now. This is due to many factors, but primarily his complete disregard for rule of law, civil liberties, and respect for either the ideals or letter of the Constitution. I don’t do protest votes. I vote my conscience, no matter what. It just so happens that this year my conscience is for Gary Johnson.

    Also, re: Ohio predictions, don’t forget anomalous results where tallied votes mysteriously don’t match exit polling in precincts where paperless DRE voting machines were used. And not randomly anomalous. Watch for those anomalies to go uniformly in Romney’s direction.

  5. I’m disappointed too, but at least Obama thinks me and my family are equal to everyone else and deserve equal rights and won’t appoint supreme court justices who will try to take away 1. me and my families civil liberties like Romney almost certainly will 2. a woman’s right to choose like Romney almost certainly will. Obama has been a HUGE disappointment, no lie, but a Romney protest vote? What’s the point? Why not Gary Johnson?

    • Rachel, Sadly Obama and his wife don’t give a darn about anyone but themselves, and they do not think you are equal . Michele spent over a hundred million on HER vacations just through July, That is 2012 alone, No, sadly they are a self serving power hungry duo.

    • Rachel, Romney is not going to take away your civil liberties, or your right to choose. He couldn’t even if he wanted to, and he doesn’t. He is a very liberal republican. I don’t understand where you are getting such ideas.

      • Arius, you should read the Republican Party Platform sometime. I’m not enthralled with Obama either, but no way am I voting for the GOP platform.

  6. I always vote even if I know it is for a lost cause.

    It is the only way I can be heard, even if the sound is miniscule.

  7. chance you take says:

    To repeat:
    Romney take popular by between 4 and 5 points. Wins between 285 and 300 in electoral college.

  8. I think it would be helpful to quantify the popular vote in advance, what is a realistic estimate of the impact from declines in the Northeast?

    I expect a lot of confusion and misreporting on this should your scenario play out, and it would be good to be able to separate the wheat from the chaffe on this.

    The ramifications on the fiscal cliff outcome are potentially huge. Namely, should Obama win in the EC while losing the popular vote with the difference fully explained by Sandy, he has significant leverage in the negotiations.

    However, if the vote margin exceeds any reasonable estimate of Sandy’s effects, the Republicans while respecting the outcome will justifiably view it as more a repudiation than a mandate, especially should they fare well in the House and Senate. Their willingness to compromise on anything will be nil.

  9. Polling models have a problem in that RED states are voting Republican in such high numbers relative to BLUE states for Obama. The bottom line is that these high percentage RED states voter count for Republicans do not impact who wins the electoral college count but push the national poll to reflect a closer contest then may actually exist. Models are based on past election cycles but they will probably have to be adjusted after this election if Obama wins.

  10. Obama bin Biden says:

    I just want to see Obama’s college transcript from Columbia University of New York. He was an Ivy League graduate who got accepted into Harvard Law. Very impresive. What could possibly be of embarassment to show your transcript? Has this guy ever heard of faceBook? LinkedIn? Millions of Americans share all sorts of personal details about themselves everyday online. Job seekers know they are expected to present their college credentials and validate their resume. No big deal. Obama should have stood on the main student concourse of Columbia while accepting Donald Trump’s $5M check for Hurricane Sandy relief while his academc adviser stood by, holding the transcript up for all to see, two days before a huge election. Instead, he declined that epic photo opportunity. Is it because he isn’t a Columbia alumnus? Is it because Clint Eastwood was right and Obama is the biggest fraud in history?

  11. “Holding a national election during Mercury retrograde, especially on a day [5 Nov 2012] when it changes direction, is a colossally bad idea, and it has apparently only happened once before. When? Surely you remember the disastrous US election of 2000, ” Elisabeth Grace

  12. http://www.fec.gov/pubrec/fe2008/2008pres.pdf

    Total votes in all 3 states for Obama in 2008 were just over 8 million in CT, NY and NJ (57.3% in NJ, 62.9% in NY and 60.6% in CT), McCain votes were just under 5 million.

    Two adjustments need to be made. One takes work but is quantifiable, and the other takes assumptions. First, total population is not impacted by the storm, especially NY and CT. CT wasn’t hit particularly hard compared to NY and NJ and only the southern part of the state, and upstate NY was most unaffected.

    The second is that Obama’s margin will be substantially lower than in 2008 under even the most optimistic forecasts. Without the storm, he would have received less votes than 4 years ago, just a question of how many less. Nationally the difference will be 2-4% points of the total vote.

    So take something slightly less than 2008 for all 3 states, and anything less than that is the absolute maximum possible impact on the national popular vote.

    Conservatively adjsting for 2% change versus 2008 that works out to a net margin of around 2.7 million votes (about 7.8 million votes for Obama in NY, NJ and CT, and 5.1 m for Romney). Only actual results less than this total could remotely be attributed to the storm–though I bet you hear far far higher numbers tomorrow.

  13. Gary Johnson has my vote as well. End the freaking wars! End the mind-bogglingly stupid and colossal waster of tax payer dollars known as the war on drugs, abolish the IRS, and audit the Fed. A real platform! And everything I would want to see happen in a new administration, so he gets my vote.

  14. what pimaCanyon said goes double for me; Obama might as well be term 3 of GWBush. Deficit? Try ending the wars and cutting back on the empire of bases around the world. I would like to see Obama get the electoral college majority and Romney the total vote majority; maybe with both major parties being screwed by that archaic system they will finally GET RID OF IT! Otherwise why don’t we all save lots of time and just let Ohio pick the president from now on.

  15. Small.Business.Guy.1 says:

    Bruce, read your column initially on ZH. Can you give us an update on how you are doing.?

    It would be nice to get some real valid Sitreps from the ground on how things are going, instead of the pablum being slopped out there by MSM.

  16. So, whats going on? Gold down nearly 6% in the last 30 days. Has the market priced in a Romney win? I would be expecting the price of gold to be surging if there was an expectation of a BO result. Am I missing something? One thing for sure, I’m buying if Obama gets up.

  17. Obama bin Biden says:

    Obama is likely going to win. To upset an incumbant, the challenger must have already pulled away by now. To be this close tells me there isn’t enough demand for change.

  18. Bruce thanks for opening up with your 2008 vote, but I’m even more startled that you’re in favor of might makes right. If the coastal states alone were picking the president we’d have split into three countries by now. Hamilton and Madison were true geniuses.

  19. I’m an Independent (having voted for more Dem Presidents than Repub’s) and I am astonished that any THINKING person would vote for Obama. What concerned me about him in 2008 came to pass…..he doesn’t know what he’s doing!

    I’m in my mid-50’s and he is the most UNqualified person to garner a major party nomination in my lifetime. What the hell were people thinking in ’08?! That election should have been Hillary versus Romney.

    In this election, with Romney, we have the MOST QUALIFIED person to run in my lifetime. Our economy is in a ditch and Romney has more business chops than any candidate I can remember. AND he’s governed.
    There is just no comparison whatsoever.

    The part I’ll never forget about this election (that stunningly illuminated Obama’s lack of knowledge and experience) is when asked, in the first debate, what he would do to create jobs and jumpstart the economy, he launched into a ramble about education. My eyes were popping out of my head and I say to the dog, “what the F_ _k does that have to do with creating incentive to risk capital on the sale side and creating demand on the buy side?” But wait, it was no accident…..he did it again in the third debate. When asked the same thing, he first said he’d do some things with taxes (seemed like he was poaching Romney there) and the second and much longer comment was about education again. Hello????

    Hate to say it but, seems like a classic case of voters got what they deserved……by allowing themselves to get sucked into the celebrity thing. BO = primarily icing, very little cake.

    • I cant stand Obama.

      But why do you think business skills are relevant to running a country or an economy? Surely you dont think economics or politics or politiical economy is a synonym for business?

      The economy is not a time share operation nor is it a brokerage firm. It is not even a private equity deal. These careers do not involve identical skills to government.

      Eisenhower was the best modern president you had. He was not a businessman.


  20. “If you live in NY State, your vote doesn’t matter a damn. Obama will take NY walking away. The same is true for California and Illinois.”


    I do not agree. In Illinois you can vote to change the Illinois House.


  21. Dave from California says:

    I’m normally a big fan of your predictions, but I think this one is off. Split vote is very 2 weeks ago. At this point, Obama’s more likely to win big than for this to be 2000-close. If Romney wins, then the polls were all wrong (possible), but it’s unlikely to be 2000-close either. Either case, I doubt it’ll take 2 weeks to resolve. We’ll know by midnight tonight or tomorrow morning, if you don’t want to stay up.

  22. Americans cannot and should not trust neither party. Congress is a corrupt institution that is simply bought and paid for by special interests, Wall Street and the banks. We all know that is true. When you elect a Senator or Congressman who will he/she take a phone call from? Certainly not a voter. We are nothing but “pond scum” to those people.

    My solution in the Black Bag party. Instead of voting, we will contribute money to our party. When we need something from Congress, we fill black bags full of money. Then we call and tell them what we have for them. They will certainly take our call and do exactly what we want.

  23. it’s not left vs right……it is government vs you!

    will you debt-enlsaved robots never learn?

  24. *The Day After*
    Although I am somewhat surprised (and disappointed) that Americans have not discerned that glamour matters little and prices have been and will be paid for the inexperience of Obama, that’s not what I find myself most concerned with today.

    I feel like this election cycle confirmed that voters have clearly stated, “we want a European-style Socialist nanny state, our hands are out and that’s the way it’s going to be. Govt can take better care of me than I can myself.” The utter and obvious decay of that continent because of those policies is LOST on them. American intellect has reached a new low.

    I’ll stomach watching our Prez trot around to late-night talk shows and bask in his celebrity, it’s the knowing that the American electorate has little understanding of the behemoth and serious issues before us so they re-elect an academic to tackle them that is kicking my ass today.