For all the hype about Mitt Romney wanting to “expand the map,” his travel schedule today makes clear exactly which states the Republican is trying to secure. He was in Florida this morning, and he’ll hold two events in Virginia this afternoon, before heading to Ohio and New Hampshire.
The fact that Virginia is still very much up for grabs has to be discouraging for Republicans. It’s extremely hard to imagine the scenario in which Romney pull together 270 electoral votes without Virginia – and right now, President Obama appears to be slight favorite.
The latest NBC/WSJ/Marist poll, for example, shows the president with a one-point lead. In fact, looking over all of the Virginia surveys from the last few days, Obama leads in all of them except one, and the exception is Rasmussen – a pollster very friendly to Republicans – which shows Romney up by a single point. Nate Silver’s projection gives the president a 72.6% chance of winning here.
It’s a reminder to keep a close eye on the commonwealth tomorrow night, because it may well be the swing state that dictates the outcome. If the president wins the likely-blue states, and then picks up Iowa, Nevada, Wisconsin, and Virginia, he’ll pass 270 – even without Ohio and/or Florida.