|Mitt wishes you a Happy Halloween|
One of the worst things about our democracy is the seemingly interminable presidential election cycle.
From the TV ads to the debates to the newscasts devoid of any real substance, this election just begs to be over.
Almost all of the $2 billion raised by the Republicans and Democrats goes towards TV advertising.
In order to keep that revenue flowing, TV news stations hype the presidential race to ridiculous levels rather than give viewers information that is useful.
Yes, the presidential race is close, if you look at the national polls of the popular vote, with Mitt holding a slight edge.
As we learned in 2000, though, the popular vote means nothing compared to the electoral vote (EV) count. The winner needs 270 EVs.
And, we know that there are three battleground states (Ohio, Florida and Virginia), but that Ohio is the key to it all.
And, in Ohio, about four counties will decide the next president of the United States. Those counties have balloting machines owned by a company with ties to Romney by way of Bain Capital.
News events, including Hurricane Sandy, probably will have little impact on the race, unless the power is still out.
With that said, President Obama still has a tenuous lead in Ohio. Republicans appear to be turning out better in early voting than they did in Ohio in 2008. Conversely, Democrats appear to be doing much worse than they did 2008 in early voting there.
And yet, the number crunchers at Real Clear Politics, a right-leaning website, give President Obama the edge to claim 281 EVs.
A professor with a civil engineering background in Orange County, Calif., used his computer model to forecast President Obama's reelection. He thinks Obama will get 286 EVs. Predicting this in one of the most Republican areas of the country could put the professor's life in jeopardy.
The Intrade gambling folks, who only care about money, still show President Obama with better than a 63 percent chance of winning.
At fivethirtyeight, Nate Silver, who is a left-leaning numbers guru, is still giving President Obama about a 73 percent chance of winning with 294.6 EVs.
Meanwhile, the Princeton Election Consortium sees Obama taking 305 EVs.
We can only hope.
Still, many right-wing blogs are predicting a 5 percent to 7 percent Mitt victory. They claims the polls are biased because they under-represent Republicans.
Commenters on political stories on the Wall Street Journal and Fox News websites are confident that Mitt will blow the president away. Whenever the Journal runs stories that suggest perhaps the president has a slight lead, these ranters accuse the Journal of being another left-wing rag.
Progressives, though, are nervous.
I think both sides can agree that the sooner this thing is over, the better.