McCain’s Must-Win Battleground States

By Jennifer Parker

Oct 24, 2008 1:17pm

The Big Ten Battleground Polls just can’t be right. The latest surveys show Barack Obama leading John McCain in all eight Midwestern states all by double-digits. Rather than calling them battleground states, you have to call them McCain must-wins. Obama has built up incredible double-digit leads in the states won by Sen. John Kerry in 2004.
It also looks like he has insurmountable leads in Iowa and New Mexico, two states that voted for President George W. Bush four years ago. So that leaves eight states Obama and McCain are fighting for right now: Florida, Ohio, North Carolina, Virginia, Colorado, Nevada, Indiana, and Missouri. McCain would have to win all eight of those battleground states to get to the 270 electoral votes needs to win the presidency. Even if McCain wins seven of his must-win states and loses say, Nevada, which has five electoral votes, he would tie Obama 269-269 in electoral votes. If there is a electoral tie, the 12th Amendment of the U.S. Constitution says the decision gets kicked to the House of Representatives, where each state gets a vote — a formula that would likely guarantee an Obama victory. Obama’s path to victory appears much easier right now. Obama needs only to win all the states won by Kerry in 2004, the Bush -won states of Iowa and New Mexico where he’s leading, plus one of Virginia, Ohio or Florida to become president of the United States. Currently Obama is leading in all three of those toss-up states. –George Stephanopoulos

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