Sabato's Crystal Ball

Archive for July, 2012

Final Veepstakes Ratings: Pawlenty, Portman Continue to Top List

, U.Va. Center for Politics

And then there were five. After starting out with more than 20 names a few months ago, we can now count our list of Mitt Romney’s vice-presidential possibilities on one hand. Leading the list is the man generating national buzz at the moment: Tim Pawlenty. The former Minnesota governor, who told us jokingly that he […]

Yogi Berra and Veepstakes

, Guest Columnist

The wisdom of Yogi Berra can illuminate most situations life presents. That versatility became apparent again last week when former Gov. Tim Pawlenty (MN) described being considered to be the running mate for Mitt Romney as “a little bit of déjà vu all over again.” Four years ago, Pawlenty was runner up to Gov. Sarah […]

Senate Update: Republican Primary Potholes?

, U.Va. Center for Politics

Coverage of the race for the Senate has, rightfully and unsurprisingly given the seats in play this cycle, focused on the 23 Democratic-held Senate seats being contested this fall, as opposed to the 10 Republican-held seats. With so many targets, Republicans have many opportunities to go on offense, with seemingly few places to play defense. […]

It Don’t Mean a Thing if It Ain’t Got That Swing: in Search of the Elusive Swing Voter

, Senior Columnist

As pollsters and political commentators have focused on the outlook for the November general election, swing voters have invariably been getting a lot of attention. According to a recent AP/GfK Poll, swing voters — those who are undecided or uncertain about which candidate they will support — make up 27% of the electorate. In what […]

Fasten Your Seat Belts: Polarization, Weak Economy Forecast Very Close Election

, Senior Columnist

We are pleased this week to publish Alan Abramowitz’s first forecast for the 2012 presidential election. Prof. Abramowitz, one of the nation’s top experts on election modeling, has tweaked his model to reflect the nation’s polarized electorate. The polarization variable, as he explains, makes his model more accurate, including when it’s applied to recent elections […]

An Over/Under on Democratic House Gains

, House Editor

In sports betting parlance, an “over/under” is a bet on whether there will be more or less of a given statistic in a certain game. So, in a football game, say the over/under is 50; gamblers would bet whether the total points scored would be more or less than 50. We include this reference just […]

The Old Dominion’s Political Map

, U.Va. Center for Politics

Our Political Map of the United States was such a big hit that we’ve decided to drill a little bit deeper by taking the same political map concept — sizing states by their population — to the county and city level. This week, the Crystal Ball examines the political geography of three presidential battlegrounds in […]

The Buckeye State’s Political Map

, U.Va. Center for Politics

Ohio, the great maker of presidents, remains vitally important in presidential elections because it is one of the biggest of the 10-15 truly competitive states in the Electoral College. But it does not pack the electoral punch it once did. On one hand, the Buckeye State does have the seventh-most electoral votes of any state […]

The Tar Heel State’s Political Map

, Guest Columnist

The Tar Heel State has grown steadily over the past decade. After being  the “last in” in 2000 — North Carolina was awarded the final House seat in reapportionment, bringing its tally to 13 — it was the “first out” in 2010 — falling just short of the population needed for a 14th seat. Statewide, […]