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August 16, 2012

Romney/Ryan Gain Strength In Three Swing States

One I already mentioned -- Wisconsin. The other two are Florida and Pennsylvania.

In Florida...

Also, according to the poll 48 percent say they fear Obama's health care law more than Ryan's Medicare proposal, while 41 percent say the opposite.

In Pennsylvania, it's 44-38 Obama, but when you add in leaners, it's 47-42 Obama. The Atlantic calls that a "caveat," whereas I'd call it an intensification (of the notion that Romney/Ryan are competitive there).

It's too early to do that "give 3/4ths of all undecided voters to the challenger," still (that rule applies in the last two weeks of the campaign). But... even with leaners, only 47% would vote for the incumbent.

Allah has good post on the Whiteboard Advantage. This gets at an idea I pitched a while ago -- Romney should record 3 one hour seminars on basic economics and policy. The point isn't so much that people watch them, so much as they hear Romney is competent enough, and willing to discuss the issues enough, to record 3 hours of economics lessons.

The whiteboard is better. Same idea though: Look. I'm good with these abstract concepts and want to explain them to you. Virginia Postrel is reminded of Ross Perot's televised seminars on the debt. It's not just that people agree with you when they hear your argument. It's that they also appreciate being treated like a grownup and having some arcane points spelled out for them.

I don't want to steal Allah's post but he's on this wavelength:

Pulling out the white board does two things for him. One: It engages voters on policy on a level that rhetoric can’t. It’s essentially a visual cue for seriousness. If Romney’s committed to winning the Medicare debate, he needs to convince voters that the war of words with Obama isn’t election fingerpointing as usual but a real argument over hugely consequential policy differences. The better he is at conveying that, the more the public will resist liberal Mediscaring, I think. Two: It builds on the new identity Romney’s forged for himself as a policy wonk by picking Ryan as VP. I flagged that in my very first post after Ryan was announced: It felt like, until last week, Mitt’s campaign had been about nothing in particular except how bad Obama’s been on the economy. Now, suddenly, he’s an entitlement reformer par excellence, bold enough that he’s actually willing to bust out a de facto blackboard for his cause.

Karl Rove agrees that the Democrats really should have read ObamaCare before passing it to find out what's in it. They are vulnerable on Medicare. And if you don't believe him, Jay Cost agrees.

My previous thought had been campaigns wouldn't matter much; that the trajectory of the election was already determined by the economy, and that Romney was ergo destined to win. Sure, people still have to cast their votes, I reasoned, but we know, for a fact, the great bulk of the factors that will shape their decision. And those factors do not presage well for Obama.

Beginning last Friday, I began to lose my confidence; after all, one can only stand on a prediction for so long without seeing supporting evidence (such as poll movement). Kind of hard to just keep repeating a theory while not seeing any evidence for it.

But now I'm feeling confident again, and revising my thought that "the campaign won't matter much:" This campaign could matter, and turn a 52-47 loss for Obama into a 56-43 landslide for Romney. (I know, the numbers didn't change much; but the little difference matters.)

But that's getting ahead of ourselves. We'll have to see how it plays, but right now I think the Democrats are panicking once again. Previously, they panicked; but they always knew they had the MediScare card in up their sleeve, ready to be played.

And it turns out they had it trumped and played back on them. So now what? That was their backstopper, that was their Plan A (and also their Plan B, and Plan C).

If that's out, what do they have? Run on gay marriage?

You know who's not panicking? Chris Matthews. You know why? Because he's stupid and doesn't follow the news very much.

This might be a tea leaf too far, but you know when you've got the wind in your sails? When you're loose and joking around. When you have them on the defensive, ridiculing them.

That's just a feeling. Our optimism could be ill-founded. And yet, there's a reason for it. It didn't just come out of nowhere.

And forgive the use of this word, but when even the Washington Post is calling Joe Biden fundamentally unserious, he's becoming -- become? -- Palinized. He's a liability, and Obama's got a shit-ton of liabilities on his hands already.

I do not believe he will be on the ticket.

Combine that with silly-shit desperation moves like this -- the White House criticizing the Ryan plan for not balancing the budget fast enough for their liking-- and it sure seems that one side is making first downs and the other side is coming apart.

Cascade? What I was getting at in my prediction was the idea of the preference cascade. I've been predicting it for, oh, two and a half years now. I'm still waiting. Hence, my waning confidence.

And just as I was publishing I checked my email. JackStraw sends this as evidence of the tipping point tipping over.

Radford bakery that turned Biden away sells out of 'freedom cookies'

The viral reaction to Chris the Baker shows the continuing resonance of "You didn't build that" in the presidential campaign.

Another such sign, a direction arrow if you will, is here.

Speaking of that, I was talking to a friend. He wanted to know my take. I basically told him most of the stuff you just read (except this was before my confidence was restored).

I mentioned that what I always want to hear about is how this is playing in the real world, not with partisans, but you know, average joes who don't follow this stuff.

He sent this -- check out comment 2.

Even Crabby Brokedown Dave Letterman: Even he thinks Biden is the new Palin.

Letterman: They’re saying Paul Ryan could be a big boost for the Republican ticket. Hey, Joe Biden is a big boost for the Republican ticket.

via @ahmalcom

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posted by Ace at 08:13 PM

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