Dick Morris predicts the election

    Prediction: Romney 325, Obama 213

By Dick Morris on November 5, 2012

Published on TheHill.com on November 5, 2012

Yup. That’s right. A landslide for Romney approaching the magnitude of Obama’s against McCain. That’s my prediction.

On Sunday, we changed our clocks. On Tuesday, we’ll change our president.

Romney will win the states McCain carried in 2008, plus: Florida, Indiana, Virginia, North Carolina, Colorado, Iowa, Ohio, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Minnesota.

In the popular vote, Romney will win by more than 5 points.

The Obama campaign made the following key mistakes:

  • It bet the farm on negative ads in swing states. It didn’t realize that Mitt’s convention speech and the three debates would give him the chance to live down the charges and demonstrate — through facts and his demeanor — that they were baseless.
  • Obama had no Plan B if the negatives didn’t work. He never really laid in a convincing defense of his record, except to recall the mess that he inherited and to try to make people believe things were better. He had no vision for his second term, except more of same. He never moved to the center — the shift that reelected Bill Clinton.
  • Obama drew his list of swing states too narrowly. He did not contemplate that he would be forced to defend Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, Michigan or Minnesota and squandered his money contesting unwinnable states like North Carolina. When Romney bypassed Obama’s “firewall” states (like the Germans did the French Maginot Line in World War II), the president had not laid in the necessary prophylactic irradiation of negative ads, and three of the states embraced Romney.
  • By focusing on the negative, Obama sacrificed first his personal popularity and then his dignity and presidentiality. No longer was he the hope and the change. He became nothing more than a nasty partisan, throwing epithets at his rival. A president does not let himself be quoted as saying that his opponent is a “bullsh–ter” or that voting is the best “revenge.” Even his dress was wrong. Instead of appearing in a dark suit, he dressed in an open-neck white shirt, trying to be everyman but succeeding only in not looking like a president.
  • Since he offered nothing more than a negative campaign and a grab-bag of special-interest pleadings for single women, unions, college kids and minorities, Obama failed to inspire the turnout that he needed. Against Santorum and Gingrich, Obama could have made the case that their prospective presidencies were sufficiently dangerous that liberals and Democrats must rush to the polls to stop them. But against the congenial Romney, the warnings rang hollow.
  • In the first debate, Obama was terrible. We’ll likely find out what his excuses are after the polls close. Did he have the flu? Was it the altitude? Had he, as Bob Woodward suggested, just received a dose of bad news? Why did he appear distracted?
  • Obama should have gotten the facts out quickly about Benghazi rather than let them drip, drip, drip out over six weeks. He could then have handled the crisis and won points for determination and toughness. Instead, to the very end, he looked like he was covering up the fact of a terrorist attack. Because he was.
  • After Sandy, Obama visited New Jersey and surveyed the damage with Gov. Chris Christie (R). He should have stayed on the storm, superintending relief efforts, urging FEMA on, absorbing the lessons of Bush’s failure to cope well with Katrina. Instead, he returned to the partisan wars and the strident speeches in swing states.
  • None of this should take away from Romney’s brilliant campaign. By staying on the economy and not being tempted into side issues like Libya, Mitt kept the focus where it needed to be and never let up. His campaign’s foray into Pennsylvania, Minnesota and Wisconsin was vital to his chances of victory. More about what Mitt did right in my post-election column on Thursday. But for now, let’s celebrate the new president we are about to elect.


    Posted at 10:15 AM ET, 11/07/2012

    Fox’s Van Susteren: Dick Morris is off his rocker

    By Erik Wemple

    An exercise in logic here: After listening to Dick Morris issue his pre-election prediction that Mitt Romney would win in a landslide, Fox News host Greta Van Susteren came up with an either-or proposition:

    Either you’re really, really right and really, really much smarter than everybody else or you’re off your rocker, right? Because no one else is saying this.

    Morris responded with what Twitter knows as a humblebrag:

    It’s not a question of being smarter than anybody else. It’s that I’ve done this for a living and there are very few people on television who talk about politics who’ve ever made a living doing it, and most of them are partisan and echoing a point of view, but when you get down to it, a guy like Karl Rove or Pat Caddell or me or even Joe Trippi, we make a living doing this and I’ve made a living doing it for 40 years.
    He went on, famously: “I know how to read a poll.”

    Last night’s returns resolved Van Susteren’s either-or scenario. Romney didn’t win in a landslide, as it turns out; he didn’t win in a squeaker, either. President Obama prevailed by winning swing states by small margins.

    Therefore: Van Susteren adjudges Morris as being off his rocker. Yet that judgment doesn’t tell the whole story of Dick Morris’s predictions. A full appreciation needs to go to the transcript, the better to retrace all the glorious and abstruse methodology that Morris used to reach his forecast. Bolded text added to highlight an unforgettable flourish of Morrisian smoke and mirrors:

    Pew research has a poll out today that says that Obama will win…50 to 47…Then you look at their sample, and they have four points more Democrats than Republicans. Well, Gallup, which has done the definitive study on party ID in the last week, with over 4,000 interviews, says it should be three points more Republicans than Democrats. So that poll is seven points wrong. So when it says Romney’s going to lose by three, he’s going to win by four. And then on top of that, in Pew’s own data, they say that Romney voters are 6-8 points more likely to vote than Obama voters, so that’s another three points. Add that on top of it and you have got Romney winning by seven. And then we all know that the undecided vote always breaks against the incumbent. Take the 7 or 8 points of undecided after you move those numbers around, split ’em 2 to 1, you have Romney winning by eight or nine points — in the exact same poll that they’re passing off as being a three point Obama victory. And you go into each of these state polls and you drill down taking account of those three things — the sample being too Democratic, the turnout being oriented toward Romney, and the undecided going against the incumbent — and you get a true sense of the true shape of what this election’s going to be all about.

    Morris asked to be invited back on Van Susteren’s show to be held accountable for his predictions. Skip it, Van Susteren.


    November 7, 2012

    I’ve got egg on my face. I predicted a Romney landslide and, instead, we ended up with an Obama squeaker.

    The key reason for my bum prediction is that I mistakenly believed that the 2008 surge in black, Latino, and young voter turnout would recede in 2012 to “normal” levels. Didn’t happen. These high levels of minority and young voter participation are here to stay. And, with them, a permanent reshaping of our nation’s politics.

    In 2012, 13% of the vote was cast by blacks. In 04, it was 11%. This year, 10% was Latino. In ’04 it was 8%. This time, 19% was cast by voters under 30 years of age. In ’04 it was 17%. Taken together, these results swelled the ranks of Obama’s three-tiered base by five to six points, accounting fully for his victory.

    I derided the media polls for their assumption of what did, in fact happen: That blacks, Latinos, and young people would show up in the same numbers as they had in 2008. I was wrong. They did.

    But the more proximate cause of my error was that I did not take full account of the impact of hurricane Sandy and of Governor Chris Christie’s bipartisan march through New Jersey arm in arm with President Obama. Not to mention Christe’s fawning promotion of Obama’s presidential leadership.

    It made all the difference.

    A key element of Romney’s appeal, particularly after the first debate, was his ability to govern with Democrats in Massachusetts. Obama’s one-party strident approach, so much the opposite of what he pledged in his first national speech in 2004, had turned voters off. But by working seamlessly with an acerbic Republican Governor like Christie, Obama was able to blunt Romney’s advantage in this crucial area.

    Sandy, in retrospect, stopped Romney’s post-debate momentum. She was, indeed, the October Surprise. She also stopped the swelling concern over the murders in Benghazi and let Obama get away with his cover-up in which he pretended that a terrorist attack was, in fact, just a spontaneous demonstration gone awry.

    Obama is the first president in modern times to win re-election by a smaller margin than that by which he was elected in the first place. McKinley, Woodrow Wilson, FDR, Eisenhower, Nixon, Reagan, and Clinton all increased their re-election vote share significantly. Obama’s dropped from a 7 point margin over McCain to a 1 point margin over Romney.

    That he could get re-elected despite his dismal record is a tribute to his brilliant campaign staff and the shifting demographics of America. This is not your father’s United States and the Republican tilt toward white middle aged and older voters is ghettoizing the party so that even bad economic times are not enough to sway the election.

    By the time you finish with the various demographic groups the Democrats win, you almost have a majority in their corner. Count them: Blacks cast 13% of the vote and Obama won them 12-1. Latinos cast 10% and Obama carried them by 7-3. Under 30 voters cast 19% of the vote and Obama swept them by 12-7. Single white women cast 18% of the total vote and Obama won them by 12-6. There is some overlap among these groups, of course, but without allowing for any, Obama won 43-17 before the first married white woman or man over 30 cast their vote. (Lets guess that if we eliminate duplication, the Obama margin would be 35-13) Having conceded these votes, Romney would have had to win over two-thirds of the rest of the vote to win. He almost did. But not quite.

    If Romney couldn’t manage this trick against Obama in the current economy, no Republican could.

    But that doesn’t mean we just give up. Obama barely won this election and we still have a Republican House of Representatives. We still have the ability – and more important, the responsibility – to fight to keep this great country as we know it and love it.

    We must stop Obama’s socialist agenda. That’s our job for the next four years. We cannot allow Obama to magnify his narrow victory into a mandate for larger government, bigger spending, and less freedom.

    This is not a call for gridlock. If Obama moves to the center and proposes moderate measures, we should support them. But that’s unlikely.

    So we have our work cut out for us.

    November 1, 2012

    Here’s the rundown:

    Romney leads in all the states McCain carried in 2008 for 179 electoral votes.

    Romney is convincingly ahead in Indiana (10), North Carolina (15), Florida (29), Colorado (9), and Virginia (13) total: 255 needed to win: 270

    Ohio (18): It looks like we are ahead. Rasmussen has us up by two. So do some internal polls. But with the variation in turnout motivation and the undecided going against the incumbent, we should win by more than that.

  • Iowa (6) Ditto. Latest polls have us one ahead.
  • NH (4) Rasmussen has us up by two but probably more than that given turnout and undecided voters.
  • Pennsylvania (20) Our ace in the hole! We are outspending Obama 6:1 here. Partly because of your donations to Super PAC for America (Michael Reagan’s outfit). Give some more! Last night’s poll had us ahead by two in Pennsylvania. If we lose Ohio, Pennsylvania will put us over the top.
  • Wisconsin (10) Rasmussen has it tied at 49-49. We have a great organization here that won the recall contest against Gov Walker. I bet we win here. Now the focus of a major Romney effort.
  • Minnesota (16) Believe it or not, coming within range. Just a few points behind and a lot of money going in there this weekend.
  • Michigan (15) We should be closer here than we are. Lots of new money going in over the weekend, but we have faded a bit here.
  • Overall: Likely a 5-10 pt Romney win and above 300 electoral votes.

    October 31, 2012

    Whether deliberately or not, the New York Times/CBS/Quinnipiac Poll is wrong! It shows Obama carrying Ohio, Florida, and Virginia. In reality, Romney is leading in all three states and will carry them all.

    Here’s the deal. The Times is weighting the raw survey data to reflect the ratio of Democrats to Republicans who voted in 2008. True, if we get the same massive turnout among minorities and young people that propelled Obama to victory in 2008, he will win this election and carry these states. But we won’t. All the polling shows that the electorate is now much more Republican and that GOP voters are much more motivated to turn out than their Democratic counterparts.

    If we weight the Times results for the average turnout of the past four elections: 2004, 2006, 2008, and 2010, we find Romney winning all three states. Republican pollster (the best of them all) John McLaughlin and I used exit polls from the past four elections to figure out how many Democrats and Republicans actually voted and then we averaged them together. Here are the real numbers:


    NY Times results: Obama +1

    Dem/Rep ratio in Times poll: Dems +7

    Average ratio Dem/Rep past four elections: Reps +1

    Times overstates Dem vote by 8 points

    Correct poll result: Romney +7


    NY Times results: Obama +5

    Dem/Rep ratio in Times poll: Dems +8

    Average ratio Dem/Rep past four elections: Dems +2

    Times overstates Dem vote by 6 points

    Correct poll result: Romney +1


    NY Times results: Obama +2

    Dem/Rep ratio in Times poll: Dems +8

    Average ratio Dem/Rep past four elections: Reps +1

    Times overstates Dem vote by 9 points

    Correct poll result: Romney +7

    And even these results don’t tell the full story. The Gallup Poll finds that the 2012 election will actually have more Republicans and fewer Democrats voting than any of the past four elections. In 2008, the electorate had 12 points more Democrats and Republicans. In 2004, the electorate was evenly divided. Gallup estimates that in 2012, there will be 3 points more Republicans voting than Democrats.

    So the numbers above are not reflective of Romney’s real strength. He will do even better. And add to them the fact that the undecided vote goes against the incumbent, and you are looking at a real landslide.

    About Jerry Frey

    Born 1953. Vietnam Veteran. Graduated Ohio State 1980. Have 5 published books. In the Woods Before Dawn; Grandpa's Gone; Longstreet's Assault; Pioneer of Salvation; Three Quarter Cadillac
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