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Reverting to the Norm: The Race Narrows

Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images

Assuming the presidential race is a squeaker nationally and the six states just mentioned outperform and underperform in the same directions they have in the past, Obama would be at 257 electoral votes to Romney’s 248, with three states — Colorado, Nevada and Ohio — and 33 electoral votes remaining.

Obama outperformed in Colorado, carrying it by 9 points, but Bush outperformed there, as well, winning it by 4.7 points during his 2.4-point national victory. Obama also outperformed in Nevada (carrying it by 12.4 points), but Bush outperformed (very narrowly) as well, winning it by 2.6 points.

Ohio underperformed very slightly for Bush in 2004 (who carried it by 2.1 points), while Obama also underperformed in the state, winning it by only 4.6 points. It was the only swing state that underperformed for both men.

In the final 10 days, swing voters certainly could collectively make a decision to rehire the president or to fire him. But at this point, it seems more likely that we are headed to a tight and possibly inconclusive election night.

Stuart Rothenberg is editor of the Rothenberg Political Report.

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