Here are the latest polls from the battleground states, updated through the day:
Florida: Obama 47%, Romney 44% (Newsmax/Zogby)
Michigan: Obama 44%, Romney 41% (Denno Research)
North Carolina: Romney 52%, Obama 46% (Rasmussen)
Ohio: Obama 49%, Romney 48% (Rasmussen)
Virginia: Obama 49%, Romney 48% (Public Policy Polling)
This is the state of the presidential race between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney today, October 18. The full effect and totality of the post debate polling where it has been widely believed Mitt Romney took the first debate with Obama walking away handedly with the second debate, democrats are waiting with baited breath at their potential resurgence into the race which seemed all but lost 10 days ago.
Each party is claiming record activity with 19 days left before Election Day. Democrats are seeing massive early in person voting and republicans just this morning announced huge absentee ballot mailings in key Florida areas, Miami-Dade County (which is predominantly African American), the I-4 Corridor (which is Central Florida) and the Palm Beach counties.
As always, this race from the beginning, has been expected to be close. There will be no runaway candidate this cycle. Ideology will win the day, not issues. For that reason alone, it will be close. If it was an issues election, the race would be a different race with much more daylight between the candidates.
With that being said, Romney may have actually been more right about the infamous 47% video which was filmed in Boca Raton, FL private fundraiser earlier this year. Ideologically, African Americans will not vote republican down the ballot and neither will most Hispanics. Turnout will be key as indicated by the closeness in the polls.
Florida, Michigan (Romney’s birthplace), Ohio are likely, according to details deeper in the polling data, to go to Obama. Although Florida seniors are expected to come out in favor of Romney overwhelmingly aside for those who are more concerned with Medicare and Social Security reforms under a Romney Administration. Obama’s position on the auto bailout is expected to push him toward claiming Michigan’s electoral votes considering Romney was not in support of securing the necessary funding for the industry giant back in 2008. Auto suppliers in Ohio are likely to show their appreciation for Obama as well for the same reasons.
You haven’t heard much about Wisconsin, Congressman Paul Ryan’s, Romney’s VP choice, home state. These two men must perform well in their home states if they want to win this election. The President was in New Hampshire yesterday, another battleground state, campaigning vigorously for the female vote. Romney has closed that gender gap, but many analyst suggest, when the dust settles, women will go with their “protector of choice”, Barack Obama.
Massachusetts, Romney’s current home state and the state where he served as Governor for four years is no longer a battleground fight. It is expected that Romney will not win the state, another major loss for the Romney camp.
The polls will continue to show a tight race until the end. The third debate, scheduled for this Monday will not be as much a mover or shaker one way or the other, however the fireworks stemming from the forthcoming debate and may serve as a lightning rod.
The politics of the political mess between both candidates will drive voters to the polls not policy and that’s truly unfortunate. Abortion, Equal Pay, Taxes and Entitlements are all still muddied waters for Romney, while Libya and terrorist attacks on the military still serving in Afghanistan is a yoke for Obama. It’s not issues, but ideology winning the ad wars. That’s my story and um sticking to it.
During this year’s Republican National Convention this year, Senator Rand Paul of Kentucky stood on the stage to vouch for their nominee, Governor Mitt Romney. Not long before that, in early June of this year, Senator Paul reluctantly endorsed Romney when his own father, Congressman Ron Paul failed for the second time to earn the GOP presidential nomination himself.
Paul, if we are honest, couldn’t pass up on the opportunity to advance his own national profile by accepting the speaking slot at the convention. During his speech however Senator Paul said, “Republicans must acknowledge that not every dollar spent on the military is necessary or well spent”.
Was that a shot across the bow for Romney at the time? Regardless of what it was or who Paul was talking about he delivered the line early in his speech before the convention giving it a priority on his own agenda to cut spending, even on Defense, which goes against the GOP party logic. After hearing what was billed as Mitt Romney’s major foreign policy speech, Senator Paul, according to his staff was astonished.
Sen. Paul publicly broke with GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney’s approach to foreign policy on Wednesday, writing in a column for CNN that he was “a bit dismayed” by the former governor’s remarks made two days earlier.
The Senator from Kentucky wrote, “Romney chose to criticize President Obama for seeking to cut a bloated Defense Department and for not being bellicose enough in the Middle East, two assertions with which I cannot agree”. He didn’t stop there, he continued, “We owe it to ourselves, our soldiers and our children to take a more careful look at our foreign policy, to not rush into war, and to not attempt to score political points with wrongheaded policy ideas.”
The key points in that statement support precisely where the polling shows war weary Americans currently are. (1) “Take a more careful look…”- The President has been accused by John McCain, Paul Ryan and Romney himself, just name a few, of making this nation weaker by not being more aggressive with sending even more troops abroad at a time we are currently trying to end the wars in the Middle East.
(2) “Not to rush into war…”- Many believe Obama should send troops into Syria, Iran and Libya as well as keep troops in Iraq and Afghanistan forever just about. Republicans are trying to have it both ways; they want to reduce the debt, but at the same time increase the Defense budget which clearly will inflate the debt since there is literally no way of paying for the increased defense spending. They would like to cut spending across the board on everything except defense. You guys have to pick a side, you can’t take credit for the war effort while blaming Obama the increased costs of the war.
(3) “Not attempt to score political points with wrongheaded policy ideas…”- The Senator who not long ago stood before millions on national television to endorse the GOP candidate as the next best thing for this country now says his candidate of choice, Mitt Romney, has some “…wrong-headed ideas…”.
No one believes Romney’s speech was effective. Nothing he said created much distance between what he would do on the issues that matter and what President Obama is already doing. When it came to Iran, Romney said he would use the same red line suggested by Obama. Only to have his campaign come out within hours to say, “The Governor would actually impose a red line on Iran sooner than Obama”. Even they realized they needed some light between both candidates.
Paul went on to say he would not support any military action with American troops in Syria. He thought the Romney campaign failed to consider all the “complexities of the situation on the ground” and spoke negatively of the typical “act first, think later” political stance.
I think you can take away from this public rebuke, Rand Paul’s disdain for Romney’s military agenda.
Very few republicans have come out against this publicly because they would rather not rock the boat in light of Romney’s rise in the polls, but you must know, if the GOP candidate was scraping the polling abyss as he was just over a week ago, Romney would be his parties’ punching bag right now. That’s my story and um sticking to it.
During what was billed as Mitt Romney’s major foreign policy speech on Wednesday, the republican nominee for the presidency spoke of his significant difference on foreign matters from President Obama. Although he currently proposes additional defense spending, above what the Defense Department believes it will ever need, ever, there weren’t any changes from his plan from those of Obama.
Romney looks to add $2 trillion in defense spending for new 15 Navy ships to be built each year and 3 new submarines. There is no data supporting the need for this additional spending nor is there any plan Romney has identified that requires this new influx of cash. What was missing from the speech held at the Virginia Military Institute was the method in which Mr. Romney intend pay for this additional cash influx.
So with Romney’s desire to demonstrate in vivid terms, projecting America’s strength, what cost is too great a cost? Romney believes Obama has caused America to appear weak around the world while simultaneously sending all the right messages to war weary voters by stopping just short of stoking more war…kinda.
Why kinda? Well, in that same speech yesterday, Romney suggested he would be open to sending American troops to Libya and Syria…for what? Not certain. Capturing and killing Bin Laden, seeing the Libyan people retake their democracy from long time dictator, Moammar Gaddafi, under the leadership of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s diplomatic efforts and tackling the concerns of the Middle East with the recent exception of the fall out from the embassy attack in Benghazi, Obama has apparently acted tough, but looked weak? Not sure how that works.
We should consider the cost of the strong looking approach? Is it better to look tough or actually be tough on those who threaten to harm America and our interests? Under the latter Bush, war expenditures were kept separate from the annual White House budgets and submitted to congress as Emergency Budgets which hid the true debt we were incurring.
Obama once in the Oval combined the costs to keep true cost of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan transparent. Oddly enough, those same opponents now accuse Obama for inflating the debt as if they are unaware of where the additional debts come from. The cost of projecting strength while running up deficits to do it is in fact weak. That’s my story and um sticking to it.
Mitt Romney has been preparing for months to debate President Obama. The incumbent has been hunkered down in Las Vegas for the past 3 days, preparing for the challenge tonight. I was in Nevada when Air Force One landed, pictured above, and my entire day was thrown off schedule. For what, to prepare a number of contrived responses and rehearse a set of attacks that may throw Mr. Romney off his prepared “zingers”. Is tonight’s debate anything more than a ninety minute infomercial? Not really, but are you buying what it being sold?
After months of back and forth between the two candidates and their surrogates, following months and months of television ads and tens of millions of dollars raised from donors in backyards, churches and secret hotel ballrooms, both candidates have worked extremely hard to pretend this evenings debate is as impromptu as their OTR (off the record) campaign stops to ice cream parlors, sub shops and hamburger establishments.
Why is it that we have been made to believe that the debates will be anything more than more of the same? A lie yesterday will be the same lie tomorrow; today won’t change that. Ninety minutes tonight will further exacerbate the perceptions Americans already have of both candidates. The needle has moved to such a fine point in the polling for both candidates that they will play it so safe for fear of turning off the independent voter.
This time, in the last cycle, we were talking about the undecided voter and how the debates could swing the election one way or the other. Either candidate is less concerned about that as of today, instead their campaigns are focusing on the independent voters. The ongoing political rancor has created more and more independents in the last 5 or more years and the rate of the increase is only showing a trend that is expected to rise.
Cable networks have billed the debates as “a must win” for Romney as well as opined endlessly about what and how he must perform to stay in the race, within the margins of polling errors, but the word win, for the Romney camp seems a distance off. The hope is, the debates may do for the GOP candidate what his nomination, enormous fundraising efforts, tens of millions in advertising, Karl Rove and his army of political action committees, the Republican National Convention and His selection of Paul Ryan as his VP nominee have failed to do; put him in first place.
Seems like a lot to get done in 90 minutes, when the last five years hasn’t got the job done. The conservatives want to use the debates to make their candidate look like a winner. BAD. They want his numbers to move, which usually happens after any first debate on the presidential level for the challengers, BAD. The GOP base wants to reintroduce their candidate on the national stage with millions of Americans watching, BAD. They want to take this opportunity to outfox the fox.
The problem with all those statements is this, Romney needs Obama. This may cause him to appear desperate to attack Obama and come away looking opportunistic and more political, which means Obama looks more presidential and calm. With donors eye-balling this evening’s event, Romney has to prove he can not only beat the guy who put away the Clinton machine in 2008, but also win the election in a bad economy.
Team Romney needs the inevitable bump that comes to the challenger following this debate as bad as they needed the inevitable bump out of the GOP convention; it never came and nor will this one. The bumps both candidates will receive will merely offset each other and in a week, will dissipate to pre-debate levels. They must keep Romney from looking like a lion waiting to pounce. If it is ill timed, the media will compare it to his preemptive muddled attack about Libya.
Romney should win this “debate” but he won’t and in all honesty he doesn’t have too. He just has to appear in control of his campaign. He clearly just has to not lose. What the campaigns have been practicing for tonight is nothing less than bullet points and pivots. How to change the questions within your answers and leave the media with a positive spin of their performance.
No matter, whatever they fail to do on the podium, their campaign staff and surrogates will fix or reiterate what was just said moments before in the Spin Room. Just off the stage in Denver, they begin to “spin” or contort what was said to fit what they have said on the campaign trail. Any gaffes or misstatements can and will be fixed immediately following the fake debate.
Are they worth it, these debates? Once the infomercial goes off, you will find as we always do, that there shipping and handling charges that will apply so be careful before you take out your credit cards to make donations. Sure, Americans are accustomed to photo ops, this will be no different to appearances at Five Guys Hamburgers or Chipotle Mexican restaurants. That’s my story and um sticking to it.
What just happened in Libya with the death of the U.S. Ambassador to Libya, Chris Stevens is an outrage. I want to dedicate this post to merely explaining the political backlash birthed from nonsense, resulting in embarrassment for some.
The Ambassador’s car which was leaving the embassy was struck by a killing him and three others, believed to be on his security team. What exactly sparked this senseless attack on sovereign U.S. soil? A movie. A film documentary which was released on YouTube over the summer which attacked the Muslim Prophet Muhammad.
What’s worst, GOP Presidential candidate Mitt Romney injected himself into an international crisis without all the details of diplomacy. Yesterday, the U.S. Embassy in Benghazi, sensing unrest outside its doors issued a statement against the film with the hopes of calming the masses who were beginning to create disturbances and riots outside the Embassy. This statement was issued six (6) hours before an attack on the Embassy ever occurred.
Immediately however, Team Romney took to the Fox News airwaves to say the United States first response to violence should not be to “sympathize” with those who attack us by “apologizing” first. They rushed to criticize The White House and the Obama Administration, however, the critique was inappropriate.
As it turns out, President Obama had not issued the statement. Immediately after the attack, the President was informed that Ambassador Stevens was killed in the siege. It was then that President Obama and The White House issued an official statement of the attack vowing to find those responsible for the attack of our Embassy.
Immediately following that, Secretary of State Clinton issued her own rebuke of the incident and promised to do everything possible “…in the face of grief…” to restore calm and not associate this random act with that of the Libyan people who very much appreciate the efforts the United States has made to restore their freedoms and democracy.
Mitt Romney was made aware that he rushed to judgement. He is NOW aware that the statement he responded too was not an apology but instead an effort to calm the crowd from those within the Embassy. Mr. Romney has insisted to portray the first statement as an apology, although he knows better, although he is full aware that did not happen.
There are some religious leaders and dethroned political leaders who are still enraged following the removal and ultimate death in the public square in his own hometown of Sirte, of former Libyan leader Muammar Gadaffi in October 2011. This faction of leaders have often used the freedoms of the West, (America) to anger the people of the middle east.
As you may remember, last year a pastor (name not worth mentioning) of a small church of 50 burned the Quran in Gainesville, Florida created an international political frenzy which caused harm to many of our American troops abroad. These are examples of how international diplomacy can be affected when those on the fringes of political power are able to pull the trigger of hate to stoke fear for the purpose of dividing and conquering.
This morning, Mr. Romney continued to make the same false accusations on the issue with full knowledge of the circumstances and the facts surrounding the death of the Ambassador. GOP leaders in Congress have not come out in support of Romney’s statements and have distanced themselves entirely. See an article posted this morning by Politico.com, “GOP Leaves Romney Out On Limb About Libya”
Team Romney has begun to repeat lies to distort their blunder and it’s shameful. Regardless of your politics, some have whispered that as the story continues to unfold, it maybe the moment Romney lost his blueprint for his own foreign policy message. He seized on what he thought was an opportunity to attack the President, however, there has been a strong bipartisan rebuke of this preemptive attack on the presidency; acts of this nature come off as desperate. That’s my story and um sticking to it.