Quote of the election campaign

Ok, so we've had the speech of the campaign from "uncommitted."

Here's the quote of the (Republican) campaign:

"These primaries are like the Special Olympics: Everybody gets a ribbon!"
Jim Treacher. [via Instapundit]

The speech of the campaign so far!

Uncommitted wins Michigan.

Victory speech here.

[Hat tip Instapundit.]



In Michigan, a state John Kerry won in 2004 with a 3.42% lead over an unpopular George W. Bush, Hillary Clinton scored 55% in an effectively uncontested election.

Now pretend she has a Republican opponent in November.

You can see why the Republicans reckon they have a chance against the New York Senator. Let's not forget that she has vastly more resources than all her opponents combined, if we include the backing from George Soros' proxies, for example.
If I had to define "divisive"...

About the turnout, here's the score:
Democratic votes total= 592,798
Republican votes total= 867,577

Now the question is, how much did Kos' call for Democrats to vote for Mitt Romney affect this result? Did a lot of Democrats stay at home? Or is Michigan the first hard evidence that Republicans might do better in 2008 after George W. Bush?

My guess is that the wrong Democratic party candidate could get hammered in November. But so could the wrong Republican. A communicator like Ronald Reagan against Clinton-Edwards-Obama on current form would probably take the 50 states, leaving the District of Columbia to cling to. As for Bill Clinton against the current Republican field? No need for Ross Perot or an Oklahoma bombing.

Ron Paul hanging in there

The LA Times has noticed Ron Paul "thumped" Giuliani and Thomson In Michigan. Overall, Representative Ron Paul (Texas) is ahead of both Giuliani and Thompson, both of whom have to do well in at least one of South Carolina, Nevada and Florida. Thanks to the "Ronbots," he has more cash than his closest rivals. As he is putting out an ideological message rather than merely seeking the nomination, there is every reason to assume Ron Paul will stick around.
Here's the "popular vote" from Iowa, Wyoming, New Hampshire and Michigan for the Republicans.

CandidatePopular Vote%
Romney, Mitt443,13936.18%
McCain, John S.361,54629.52%
Huckabee, Mike207,30816.93%
Paul, Ron84,5546.90%
Thompson, Fred Dalton50,9254.16%
Giuliani, Rudolph W.49,1984.02%
Hunter, Duncan4,5670.37%
Tancredo, Thomas Gerald "Tom"3170.03%
Keyes, Alan L.2200.02%
Brownback, Samuel Dale1970.02%

I made this from data here.

Michigan thread and why it matters

I'm not staying up for the Michigan primary results, but you can follow the Republican-leaning viewpoint here and the Democrat-leaning viewpoint here (not sure if there's a specific thread on Daily Kos yet). Wordy but pretty straight reporting later here.
Here are my thoughts for what they're worth.
1) The Democrats will go and vote Republican to push Mitt Romney for two reasons. They are convinced he is beatable in November, and the more Republicans win different primaries (Huckabee got Iowa and McCain got New Hampshire), the more divided the Republicans will be. It's good politics, provided they start with the right "loser" to back.
2) Because the Democrats votes don't really count (it's a complicated issue to do with the party's nomination rules, see The Green Papers), there should be a lot less of them than Republicans, given that this is a very marginal state in the last presidential campaign. John Kerry beat George W. Bush with a 3.42% lead in Michigan. That's one of the SIX states the Democrats won with less than 4% leads (Wisconsin 0.4%, New Hampshire 1.43% [but a gain], Pennsylvania 2.5%, Minnesota 3.48% and Oregon 3.9%) in 2004. With a relatively unpopular incumbent...
For the Democrats, the easy targets are few in number: Iowa 0.67%, New Mexico 0.79% [both gains], Ohio 2.12% [yes FOUR states were closer than Ohio but somehow the conspiracy theorists never mention them] and Nevada 2.59% are the only targets under 4%. You can add Colorado on 4.67%.

So my tip is to look at the vote totals. If the Democrats poll more heavily in total than the Republicans do, then its VERY bad for the Republicans. It adds to the evidence from Iowa and New Hampshire of a party in organizational chaos.

3) Check the accuracy of the pollsters. If they broadly get Michigan right this time, they might get November right in this state, which could be cricial.

Now for some background.
The November election will be decided by an Electoral College count, with 269 (if you get the casting vote in Congress) or 270 (to be sure) votes required.
Here's the breakdown in the most tightly contested states in 2004 that I mentioned above.
0.40% Wisconsin (D), 10 votes
0.67% Iowa (R), 7 votes (gain from D)
0.79% New Mexico (R), 5 votes (gain from D)
1.43% New Hampshire (D), 4 votes (gain from R)
2.12% Ohio (R), 20 votes
2.50% Pennsylvania (D), 21 votes
2.59% Nevada (R), 5 votes
3.42% Michigan (D),17 votes
3.48% Minnesota (D), 10 votes
3.90% Oregon (D), 7 votes
4.67% Colorado (R), 9 votes

Democrats "at risk" 69 votes. Republicans "at risk" 46 votes.

And just for fun, every winning Presidential candidate since 1972 inclusive has won the following SIX states: Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Ohio, Tennesee. In 1968, a third party candidate scored wins in some of the Southern states so I haven't included that election.