First Thoughts on an Obama ‘Turnout Effect’

Chuck Todd, Mark Murray, and Domenico Montanaro write on MSNBC’s First Read:

After crunching numbers for the last several months during the Clinton-Obama contest, we’ve been experiencing mathematical withdrawals now that the Dem race is over. In a word, we have the shakes. So to calm our nerves, we got out our abacuses and did some initial fooling around with projected popular vote.

Using the 2004 results as a baseline, we were curious as to which states would swing to Obama if he does raise overall turnout by 20% (approximately another 22 million voters) and wins those new voters by a 60%–40% split. Assuming an even distribution [note: this is a big assumption] — a 20% turnout increase breaking 60%-40% for Obama would swing four states from red to blue (Iowa, New Mexico, Nevada, and Ohio). If Obama wins the new voters by a 65%–35% margin, two more states come over (Colorado and Florida), with another (Virginia) essentially too close too call.

Is it the Pope? 75,000 turned out to hear Obama speak at biggest political rally in presidential primary history in Portland, Oregon on May 18, 2008.

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