A Final Word: Handicapping the Election

Some quick anecdotal thoughts on the election:

1. There are four new national polls that came out today: Gallup, Rasmussen, CNN, and Monmouth/Survey USA. Gallup and Rasmussen have Romney up 1 point, and Monmouth and CNN have it as a tie. The Monmouth poll outpolled Democrats nationally by +4.

2. The Pew and Marist polls of yesterday that showed Obama leading nationally were polling 39% Democrats and 32% Republicans. Yep. A SEVEN point differential.

3. In the Ohio polls today there is a tie (Rasmussen) and a +1 Obama (University of Cincinnati).

4. Romney is tied in one New Hampshire poll and trailing in two others.

5. He has a five point lead in the new Florida poll today

6. George Will really truly believes we have a big, big shot at winning MN. I am skeptical. I do believe we can and will win PA, WI, and CO (in which case the election would be over regardless of OH, which I also believe we will win). Electorally, the play is to win OH, and thereby win the election. The back-up plan if OH is too close to call is to win PA and/or WI, and still win (though WI without OH and PA would not be enough, but would be with NH, IA, CO). This stuff will make you crazy, so just root for a PA win and therefore a Romney victory in time for the 7:30 pm Laker game.

I will leave you with the following from Fred Barnes, admittedly a Republican partisan.

The reality is this: I do feel very good. It is an intuition thing – I believe the enthusiasm is far greater for us, and therefore turnout will be far greater. I think the turnout issue demographically favors us (I do not believe he will get the turnout with African-Americans or Hispanics he needs, and I do not think he will get the turnout OR the voting domination of who does vote that he needs with college kids). If I am wrong, we will lose. The national polls are tight but the internal polls are very favorable, and the battleground state polls are almost cartoonishly flawed. The fact that among Jewish blocs, Catholic blocs, female blocs, and especially white male blocs, Romney has the improvements he does, tells me that WHEN COMBINED WITH what I think will be a monumental improvement amongst evangelicals and a HUGE win with independents, this could be Romney’s comfortably. We will know soon. I would love to sleep Tuesday night.

I also will add: There is nothing about a Barack Obama win that will represent the end of America. Our founding fathers made it so. There is nothing about a Mitt Romney win that will represent the final victory in all of challenges. Our challenges are primarily cultural. From my perspective, we need a Romney win because in the short term he can improve the situation, and Barack Obama can and will make it worse. But no, I am not willing to say either outcome would usher in the second coming. History has taught us better.

David L. Bahnsen, CFP®, works as a Senior Vice President in the private client group of one of the premier Wall Street firms in the country where he provides financial planning and investment management services to individuals and families. To receive his Market Updates via email, go to DavidBahnsen.com