The TPM Electoral Scoreboard moves to Obama 313, Romney 191 as Florida moves from Toss Up to Leans Obama.
As many of you have, I’ve found our Electoral Scoreboard my surest way of visualizing the race. One way to look at the current dynamic in the race is looking at the three categories we use to divide up advantage in different states.
A state with more than a 10 point margin in the PollTracker Average we say is “strongly Romney” or “strongly Obama.” Between a 5 and 10 point margin it’s “favors” and between a 5 and 2 point margin it’s “leans”. If neither candidate has a two point margin or greater, we call it a “Toss Up.” This approach is meant to keep most states out of the Toss Up category and pick up relatively small shifts in the candidate support.
Currently in the “strongly” group Obama has 179 electoral votes and Mitt Romney has 155. This partly shows the creeping electoral advantages Democrats have had in recent cycles. But they’re reasonably even. In the next two groups combined Romney has 34 electoral votes compared to 134 for Obama.
You can characterize those numbers in different ways. But those tighter two groups (Leans and Favors) are basically the swing states, by the widest definition — those that really have any chance of being competitive. And Obama is ahead in just about every single one, though some remain very tight. Basically Romney has barely been able to break out from his bedrock of support in the states that won’t ever vote for a Democrat.
Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.