I do think that Flagg at RICOCHET and Michael Barone at THE WASHINGTON EXAMINER are at the outer limits of credibility.

The new PEW poll has Obama up three, and with a larger lead than that when it comes to strong supporters. The poll makes the true point that strong support is usually the best indicator of the election’s outcome.

Another PA poll—THE ALLENTOWN MORNING CALL—has Obama up three.

I’ve heard two of the most astute Republicans—Charles Krauthammer and Haley Barbour—complain that Obama was lucky on the Sandy timing—both suggesting that he was robbed of the mo’ he might have gotten to get over the top. Victor Davis Hanson, whose analysis is not fair and balanced, admits that Sandy cost Romney 1-3% and is talking up a final surge based, among other things, on a second wave of disappointment in government’s not-so-quick responders. That surge is conceptual or not really based in any data at this point.

So Romney could win. But it’s not that likely. I may be showing deficient partisanship here. There’s more than enough hope to vote, and a consensus of polls still has the thing at about a tie.

My gut, unlike Carl’s, isn’t chiming in on this issue. Most recently it said LUNCH!

Although I’m usually really good at calling elections with real precision (particularly 2006 and 2010—2008 wasn’t hard), I have to remember the last one I got wrong was 2004. Here was my thinking then: Bush lost the popular vote in 2000. Nobody I knew who voted for Gore in 2000 was voting for Bush in 2004. A good number of people I knew who voted for Bush in 2004 were voting for Kerry. Case closed. And the polls and then the even the exit polls looked bad for Bush.

Obviously this time you have bleeding away from Obama. The question remains: Is it enough? And then there are the turnout questions, which I didn’t address properly in 2004.

If I were you, I wouldn’t believe a word I say about the outcome of this election. But if you are betting big on the election, be sure you go with what you can actually see with your own eyes. You might remember that I basically agree with Pete—or Pete with me. You can, as Pete says, tell a “non-crazy” tale about Romney’s coming triumph, but the narrative for the president is more credible.

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Articles by Peter Lawler

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