Thursday, March 06, 2008

Re-thinking Michigan and Florida

Looking toward the potential re-votes in Michigan and Florida being strongly advocated by the Clinton camp, Joe Vogel lays out a case for why Obama supporters should embrace these efforts. In fact, he offers that it would speed up an Obama victory and secure his nomination by May 20th, well before the DNC Convention in August.

According to RealClearPolitics, Barack Obama currently has 1,573 total delegates to 1,464 for Hillary Clinton. Add in Michigan (128) and Florida (185) and suddenly 313 more delegates are up for grabs. Let's say Hillary wins both of these states by 12-point margins, 56-44. This will give her approximately 165 delegates to 148 for Barack Obama, a net gain of 17.

That puts Barack Obama at 1,721 to 1,629 for Hillary Clinton. Now, word is circulating in the press that 50 pledged delegates are going to come out for Barack Obama by the end of this week so if we add those in that puts him at approximately 1,771. That's when the remaining states come in. Here are my modest approximations for the states holding primaries and caucuses up to May 20th:

Wyoming: 12 delegates (8 for Obama, 4 for Clinton), Mississippi: 33 delegates (20 for Obama, 13 for Clinton), Pennsylvania: 158 delegates (74 for Obama, 84 for Clinton), Guam: 4 delegates (3 for Obama, 1 for Clinton), Indiana: 72 delegates (36 for Obama, 36 for Clinton), North Carolina: 115 delegates (65 for Obama, 50 for Clinton), West Virginia: 28 delegates (13 for Obama, 15 for Clinton), Kentucky: 51 delegates (24 for Obama, 27 for Clinton), Oregon: 52 delegates (30 for Obama, 22 for Clinton)

And the grand total is... Barack Obama: 2,034 (reaches the 2,025 threshold and wins the nomination), Hillary Clinton: 1,881

Of course, the more superdelegates start jumping to Obama (which has been the trend since February 5th), the sooner he can wrap up the nomination. It is not farfetched at all to believe he could be the presumptive nominee by May 6th.

So send the memo to the Obama campaign: Give in to Hillary's demand. Let Florida and Michigan re-vote. It only speeds up the path to the magic number.

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