Sunday, September 23, 2012

New Hampshire: Red in 2012

First there was Florida, then North Carolina, then Indiana and possibly Virginia. I now believe there will be a 4th state that Mitt Romney will definitely win, and to some, this might be a surprise, but I predict that New Hampshire goes red on November 2012.

Many of my friends, colleagues and contemporaries think I'm crazy with this one. The reasons they've given me: it's in the Northeast, which was fully blue in 2008 and will likely be blue again in 2012, there has been a Democrat trend within the state in national elections since 2004 and Obama won the Granite State by ten points in 2008, as well as every county. However, when one further examines the state, its politics, connections and recent history, a red switch will be the case.

Mitt Romney: Do not forget that Mitt Romney owns a vacation home on Lake Winnipesaukee and regularly spends time there with his family. He is a known commodity in the state, as it's is second home, and his "Native Son" status will be of significance throughout its borders. Furthermore, his tax cutting and economic message will play well in New Hampshire. Even though there have been Democrats running the state in the governors office, the tax issue is not something that can be taken lightly. New Hampshire has always held a status as a tax haven and if Mitt Romney applies this history to his message in New Hampshire, he will be greatly helped.

New Hampshire in 2008: Assuming Obama ceilinged in 2008 and will not get any new voters, some of the counties were very close. Most noteworthy is Hillsborough County, New Hampshire's most populous county, located on the Massachusetts border. When looking at the 2008 results, Obama won this county by 4 percentage points. The second most populous county, Rockingham County, Obama won by just over one percentage point. Another close county, located in the lake region, Belknap County was also very close in 2008. Romney will clearly gain on McCain's votes in these counties and winning them will help him compete in other areas of the state.

Senate: Kelly Ayotte became New Hampshire's Junior Senator in the 2010 wave election and has been a vocal Romney supporter. She is also quite popular in the Granite State and will be a factor to assist Romney in gaining votes.

House: Pickups in 2010 in the 1st and 2nd Districts were both Republican gains in the House Wave election, making this once thought-to-be Democrat state lean Republican. While the 2nd is may be a challenge to hold in 2012 (I believe it will hold), the 1st is more safe and Romney will help down the ticket in New Hampshire, as will be the case in other states.

While it's just one poll, it's still a significant one and should gain the attention of many. Last week, Rassmussen had Romney up in his most recent poll, and to try and answer that, the Obama campaign sent Biden up to stem the flood (and he gaffed). Although the winner of New Hampshire will only gain four electoral votes, it's still an important state because of the fact that in just over 40 days, a winner is not determined like it is in California or Texas. Once all the votes are counted, I believe New Hampshire will be a red state. What should also be known is that if Mitt Romney takes the four states I predicted red and the one that I believe is leading red, Romney needs only 18 more electoral votes. Ohio makes him the 45th President or does a combination of other states.

With 45 more days, the battle continues on.

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