A five point lead is not too much to brag about for an incumbent Democrat when it’s in a state that was won by John Kerry. A smattering of new polls from one “red state” (Florida) and the “blue states” of Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and Michigan show Romney on the warpath. Who says he’s not playing offense?
You’ll notice that Romney leads in Florida, the one “must win” for the Republican candidate. Two polls are out from Wisconsin, which, if it were to go red, would deeply complicate Obama’s strategy. The polls from Michigan and Pennsylvania both show the President up a mere five points and floundering under 50%.
What does this mean, really? Obama is being outraised, and soon outspent, not just by Super PACs but by the RNC and the Romney campaign itself. If forced to dump advertising dollars into media markets like Philadelphia and Lansing, which don’t spill over into other battleground states, the Obama campaign will have a hard time defending their vast number of pick-ups from 2008, including North Carolina, Florida and the Mountain West.
In fact, I would argue that these numbers show that Obama will need to focus almost exclusively on the Midwest, employing a strategy that relies on ceding Virginia and North Carolina, as well as Colorado and (possibly) Nevada, in favor of Iowa, Ohio and New Hampshire. Even that is risky, as New Hampshire is out of the Midwest and Iowa seems to be trending toward Romney, at least in demographics and anecdotal evidence. What would happen if they ceded the Mid-Atlantic and the West and didn’t hold onto Iowa? Heh.