The news is full of Romney "surging ahead". The media are delighted to have a "big" story again and are naturally hyping it a lot, but it's not all hype. The polls do show Romney's poll numbers advancing to a more competitive level.
So what do we do?
One pundit has noted, "When Republicans get bad news, they kill the media. When Democrats get bad news they kill themselves." Very clever and quite apt.
But there's no need for suicide nor for collecting travel folders about where to move if Romney's elected president. Let's get back to basics and be sensible:
1. In Florida, the GOPs are falling far behind their 2008 lead in absentee ballot performance, both in requests and in returns. (See Tampa Bay Times story 10/13 by Adam C. Smith, posted at realclearpolitics.) This major improvement in Democratic absentee vote is evidence of the superior Obama ground game in Florida.
2. Obama still leads in Ohio by 4 to 6 points, per the latest and most reliable polls. Again, Romney CANNOT win the electoral college without Ohio.
3. In order for Romney to win the national vote, he has to get 61% of white voters. No GOP presidential candidate has ever done this.
4. Registration is way up among Latino voters. Further, when super-cautious Nate Silver of the NY Times adjusts his analysis for Spanish-only-speaking voters, Obama's chances in Colorado improve from 44% to 57%, in Florida from 35% to 53%, and in Nevada from 62% to 77%. WOW! And it appears that pollsters are undercounting Spanish-only-speaking voters because pollsters DON'T SPEAK SPANISH!
5. Absentee voting thus far favors Obama and promises to be one-third of the entire vote, up by maybe 5% from 2008.
6. Though married white women in the suburbs have faded somewhat on Obama, they have done so at least once before during this year. And then they have swung back. (These are the same soccer moms who forget where they left the team off.)
7. And there's more. But I'll confine myself to just one extra piece of candy. Obama has a two-point lead in Arizona, according to a pollster that Nate Silver rates as having "good results in the past". Yes, I said ARIZONA! Can this be true? Well, the Democratic Senate candidate in Arizona is leading in his race. So something is happening in Arizona. I wouldn't try to put it in the bank for Obama, but it's a lovely thought and a great tribute to the good sense and rising numbers of our Latino brothers and sisters. Viva La Raza! Viva La Causa!
So don't be depressed! No one ever said it would be easy. Well, actually I did when Romney's campaign was crashing and I speculated about a "blowout". So it's all my fault for violating my innate Jewish superstition against saying anything hopeful out loud. (Like the Irish and the African-Americans, we Jews have had too many blows to risk being overtly confident that all will be well.)
But I still think it will be. Because why drain our energies into wrestling with dread? It's dumb. Besides, I just found out I've been exposed to low-level carbon monoxide for several weeks (through no fault of my own). Plus I've got knee replacement surgery right after the election.
So how much can even a Jew worry?
More encouraging to me than the seven points I listed above is the fact that YOU are out there working for Obama and contributing dollars to his campaign. I do believe in Obama, but I believe even MORE in YOU!
Can we win this election? Can we beat carbon monoxide? Can we get a new knee? Can we continue to be what Democrats have always been - a people of hope?
YES WE CAN!
Speaking of beliefs: Hey, Romney, do you still believe you can get away unscathed by your refusal to release your tax returns? The press may have stopped pushing for them, but for a lot of folks your refusal to release those returns sealed the deal. It sealed the deal against you, dummy!