Reader Poll: Is PA a Swing State?

PA's 2008 Presidential election map may look red, but PA went blue for Obama by 10+ points. That could change this year.

Obama Campaign Manager Jim Messina seems confident in Obama’s prospects, saying in a campaign video update released yesterday, “We’re actually ahead of where we were at this point last time around.”

Messina added that if the election were held today, Obama would win 243 of the 270 electoral college votes needed to win. He said Romney would win 191, with 104 votes up for grabs in the swing states.

But there is evidence on both sides to suggest that the Commonwealth could turn red (or stay blue) come November.

Republicans control the state Legislature, the governorship and one U.S. Senate seat (along with the U.S. House of Representatives), and the state lacks diversity with minorities making up only one-fifth the state’s population. John McCain performed well with both white voters and those 65 and older in 2008.

However, Obama won the Keystone State by a larger-than-average margin in 2008 (he won nationally by 7 points, but in PA by 10 points), and PA hasn’t voted for a Republican presidential candidate since 1988.

PoliticsPA posed that very question nearly three weeks ago, before recent polls nudged Pennsylvania into the Democrats’ (and particularly, Obama’s) corner. But with the election still five months away, now we’re posing the question to readers in our own poll:

Is PA a swing state?


  • No. PA is going blue. (50%)
  • Yes, this state is up for grabs. (33%)
  • Maybe, but it’s too soon to tell. (17%)

Total Voters: 597

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6 Responses

  1. PA’s days as a swing state are over. The GOP as a state organization has failed to develop strong statewide political leaders from SE PA who have a regional voter base in the Democrat stronghold where 40% of the population lives. The GOP has ceded it’s top political leadership to candidates who live out of this critical area and worse yet, actively discouraged quality people from rising out of that area. That is why only second tier candidates for second tier offices have come from the SE. Candidates that might actually become governor or senator are crushed. Because the SE voter feels out of touch with the GOP, they gravitate to the Dems. Only a few more votes are needed from Pittsburgh, Harrisburg etc. and the Ds have an insurmountable lead state wide. But for the disaster that is Obama, Corbett and Toomey would not have won in 2110. In five years, PA will be totally Blue. The only reason the GOP has a chance this year is Obama is so bad. All the Dems have to do going forward in statewide elections is nominate someone center left, and they will win every time for every office. All because of the systematic failure of the GOP to develop strong SE regional candidates.

  2. Were I live oBUMo is done. Even the blacks are not going to vote for him.

  3. Anyone who writes off PA as a Democratic state need only look to Philadelphia to understand the ramifications.

  4. Mr Kefer assumes that suburban Philly Republicans are unaware that the election is a contest between the private sector party and the public sector party. Identity politics are irrelevant to whether we can course correct before the Keynesians drive us off a cliff like they did in the basket-case economies of southern Europe. Enough were fooled by post-partisan Barry 1.0; I think they are hip to hyper-partisan Barry 2.0.

  5. PA is a swing state, especially if you look at Philly Suburban Counties (Bucks, Montgomery, Chester and Delaware), and places like the Lehigh and Wyoming Valley’s. The facts are that the GOP has become a much more idealogically conservative party. The R’s in Philly Burbs are fiscal conservatives, but mostly social moderates, so when you focus on things like abortion, contraception, gay marriage, etc., you lose those social moderates, which is one of the reasons why PA has been blue for Prez elections over the last 20 years.

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  • Reader Poll: Have You Requested a Mail-In Ballot?


    • Yes. I enjoy mail-in voting. (50%)
    • No. I am going to the poll. (50%)

    Total Voters: 121

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