Four Groups Obama Needs To Win Re-Election

From Gerald Seib at The Wall Street Journal:

[T]he key to being elected is to win the groups that should be friendly to a candidate—and to pile up so large a margin among the friendliest of them that their votes can offset the inevitable losses among less-friendly groups.

All this is especially true in a close presidential race, as this year's figures to be. Thus, in the case of President Barack Obama, seeking re-election in a stormy economic environment, his campaign is relying on four cornerstones to hold the effort steady. To see how the president is doing, start by watching these groups:

Young voters. Mr. Obama simply has to win big here. And he will. In aggregated Wall Street Journal/NBC News polling through the first half of the year, the president was preferred over Republican Mitt Romney by almost 20 percentage points among voters 18 to 29 years old.

College-educated white women. Mr. Romney is almost certain to win among white voters overall, largely because he will win big among white men, who simply aren't a great audience for Mr. Obama.

Hispanics. If Mr. Obama can win more than 60% of Hispanic votes, he will have taken a big step toward victory. Conversely, if Mr. Romney can hold the president below 60%, the electoral math shifts significantly in his favor because of his advantages elsewhere.

African-Americans. This has been and will remain Mr. Obama's strongest single group. The president almost certainly will get something in the neighborhood of 90% of the vote. 

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published this page in In The News 2012-08-20 15:15:00 -0400
Analysis & Political Strategy