National Catholic Reporter

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Obama's Magic Number

This morning's Washington Post looks at the various strategies available to President Obama's re-election team to get to the magic number of 270 electoral votes. Starting with the states John Kerry won as a baseline, and I am not sure Wisconsin and New Hampshire are sure fire bets, the Dems see five different paths to 270: Florida only; The Southwest (Nevada, New Mexico, Colorado and Iowa; The Rustbelt (Ohio and Iowa); The South (North Carolina and Virginia); and Expanding the field (Arizona). Options 1, 2 , 4 and 5 are all heavily dependent upon gaining huge margings and high turnout among Latinos. Option 3 requires performing better among white, working class ethnics, a group Obama has struggled with as far back as the primaries against Hillary Clinton. In all cases, Catholics, be they white working class ethnics or Latinos, will hold the balance of decision. Let's hope the White House has this in mind when they finally make a decision on conscience exemptions and let's hope the campaign plans an "all-in" approach to Catholic outreach.

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