(WASHINGTON) — With one week to go, states that were once considered Obama strongholds now look less solid. Republican groups are putting resources into Minnesota and Pennsylvania. Team Obama brushes off these incursions as wishful thinking by Republicans, but noticeably they are putting money and muscle into both states. Minnesota has been added to Bill Clinton’s schedule. And, Obama campaign officials admitted that they will once again start running ads in Pennsylvania, another state in which Gov. Romney is surging.
So, what is happening in Minnesota? Demographics. As our ABC/Washington Post poll has shown, Romney has a substantial lead among white men. Minnesota is one of the least diverse states in the country with 90 percent of the electorate in 2008 made of white voters. In other Midwestern states with small minority populations, like Iowa and Wisconsin, the Obama campaign has flooded the airwaves for months with anti-Romney ads. They have done nothing of the sort in Minnesota.
Moreover, the airwaves in states like Ohio and Virginia are already heavily saturated. The ground game is now key in those places. That means that SuperPAC’s with lots of money can get a better return on their investment on the airwaves in places like Pennsylvania and Minnesota than in the eight battleground states where the campaigns have been most heavily engaged.
CURRENT ELECTORAL BREAK-DOWN
Safe Obama: 207
Lean Obama: 30 – Pennsylvania (20); Minnesota (10)
Safe Romney: 191
Lean Romney: 15 – North Carolina
Toss Up: 95 – NV (6), CO (9), IA (6), WI (10), OH (18), VA (13), FL (29), NH (4)
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Nate Eaton, EastIdahoNews.com
Mike Price, EastIdahoNews.com