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Election Results - 2012

Like many others, I was wrong. Congratulations to Nate Silver & his FiveThirtyEight blog who, much to my chagrin, was very accurate in his projections.

My prediction was:

For those keeping score, I expect Romney to win the Electoral Count 315-223 and win the Popular Vote by 4-5%.

Interestingly, Nate had predicted the almost polar opposite of a 313-225 victory for Obama. Assuming Florida does finally certify for Obama, the actual results will be 334-206. One of my reasons for my prediction was that no President had ever won re-election with fewer Electoral Votes for their 2nd term. While Obama did fall from his 2008 advantage (365-173), his "firewall" of Ohio did stand & he really did not need it as Romney was unable to even retake Florida which was required to have even made this a race.

While late-breakers historically break for challengers, Hurricane Sandy & the early visuals that it provided almost certainly overturned that trend. The events surrounding Sandy could have actually not have happened better for the Obama campaign. It happened close enough to Election Day that the President benefited from the early "photo-ops", but did not pay what will inevitably be the costs as cleanup & recovery efforts almost certainly proceed slower than everyone would like.

Note:Some will blame NJ Governor Chris Christie because his cooperation with Obama almost certainly benefited the President. However, Christie's responsiblity is to the residents of his state, not Romney's campaign. That was the candidate's responsiblity and he fell short.

Specific to the polling, I didn't believe it & would have argued up until the returns began to come in that they were insane. Like many others, I perceived 2008 to be an outlier. Election 2012 proved - it was the trend.

The Democratic "advantage" that I and many others refused to believe is simply an outgrowth of demographics. Obama's core constitutency (Single Women, Blacks, Latinos, and Under30) represent a voting bloc that has grown in ever recent election. While they are not a majority overall, they do makeup a dependable group of voters who guarantee nearly 30% of the popular vote to a Democrat like Obama before the first ballot is counted. To overcome this disadvantage, a generic Republican would have to approach a 3-to-1 advantage in all of the remaining votes to win.

Add to this advantage the machine-like organization and skill of Obama's campaign that has been working for his re-election since their victory in 2004, Romney's path to the White House fell short.

For those interested in just how good his organization was, this online article provides some amazing insight. Couple this with its coordination with allied groups, it serves as a model for what Republicans are going to have to do to compete in the future.

I was wrong, but it is usually these times when one has to reassess and learn from mistakes. There are plenty from this election season. Personally, I take solace in what I have long called "SwamiDave's Rule of Proximity":

Things are rarely as good or as bad as they might appear in the moment.

Disappointed - yes. Defeated - no. In the end, it is time to go back to work.

I would love to hear your comments / thoughts.