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Romney’s Daunting Three Steps

Riding out Sandy on a 22nd-floor glass porch here in Arlington, a friend and I spent much of the time talking about the upcoming election. He’s fiscally conservative and socially moderate, but generally supports Republicans. He also had a great, simple way of thinking about the tough electoral math facing Mitt Romney, broken down into the always-popular three step format. Here’s what the nominee has to do:

1. Win Florida. Without it, the race is over and Romney has no chance. He’s been leading in the polls there for about a month, so it looks likely.

2. Win back the four eastern states typically won by Republicans that Obama took in 2008–North Carolina, Indiana, Virginia, and Ohio.

3. With those five, Romney’s only at 266 electoral votes. So he still has to win one more state.

That’s the hard reality of it, despite Mitt Romney’s “narrow but durable lead” in national polls. The national trend may put him over the top in Colorado (which is tied according to the RCP average and where the GOP enjoys a slight early voting lead) or New Hampshire, but he’s behind by a larger margin in Ohio. And it remains true that a loss there would scuttle his chances.

about the author

Arthur Bloom is managing editor of The American Conservative. He was previously deputy editor of the Daily Caller and a columnist for the Catholic Herald. He holds masters degrees in urban planning and American studies from the University of Kansas. His work has appeared in The Washington Post, The Washington Times, The Spectator (UK), The Guardian, Quillette, The American Spectator, Modern Age, and Tiny Mix Tapes.

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