Sunday, November 4, 2012

NFRW Battleground Snapshot

With just a few days left before Election Day, the NFRW touched base with Federation presidents in the all-important battleground states to see how the presidential race is shaping up. Each of them communicated a sense of enthusiasm and cautious optimism. Here is what they reported.

President Perry Buck: "I just don't know ... I couldn't read Colorado for anything right now. But I am so proud of our clubs. They are hell-bent on getting Romney elected. You would not believe the energy they are putting out … it's incredible. For Colorado, it's coming down to the independent women's vote. Republican women are talking a lot to those women, trying to engage them on the issues."

OF NOTE: Buck says that Colorado used to be a solid Republican state, but that in recent years, Republicans have let down their guard and allowed Democrats to gain a foothold. However, she sees this trend reversing, and Republicans working enthusiastically and fervently to regain lost ground. What's more, Republicans now have an edge in voter registration.

The last time Colorado went Republican: 2004

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President Cindy Graves: "The polls are showing us in very good shape. The leaders here are looking at internal polls, and they show Romney up. We're certainly not a landslide state, but we have a very good chance to win if we turn out every single vote. Our members are out working. Our radio ads are going. We're doing a lot of social media. And the rest of it is getting out the vote, chasing the ballot, and knocking doors."

OF NOTE: Florida is one of the only states in which Romney is polling almost even with Obama among Hispanic voters.

The last time Florida went Republican: 2004

President Jeanita McNulty: "We're biting our nails, but I think we can pull it off. We're in a dead heat right now, and it's really going to come down to who has the best ground game. I'm very impressed with the Romney campaign in Iowa. They are doing an extremely good job. The campaign has some great coalitions people, and the Iowa Federation has been working very closely with them. I see an excitement for Republicans this year like the Democrats had in 2008."

OF NOTE: Five of Iowa's largest newspapers have endorsed Romney, including the Des Moines Register, which hasn't endorsed a Republican since 1972. McNulty says these endorsements are significant, and will be enough to help some of the undecided voters make up their minds.

The last time Iowa went Republican: 2004

President Sandra Kahn: "Michigan can be a Republican state, but not very often. I think the polls are right. I think it's 50-50 here. It's all going to hinge on how enthusiastic our voters are and on turnout. Federation women are working very hard. We're all plugging away, hoping to bring Michigan into Romney's camp. It's going to be a fight to the very last minute, but I think there's a good chance Michigan will go for Romney."

The last time Michigan went Republican: 1988

President Maraya Evans: "Right now, it's a toss-up. I think there's a really good chance this year. There's a lot of excitement for Governor Romney … a lot of excitement. Our ladies have been very active all over the state. I'm really proud of them. They've put in a lot of hours in our Team Nevada offices, making phone calls, registering voters. We're working hard. The problem for us is going to be the unions. It always seems to boil down to that anymore. They bus their people out, and tell them who to vote for, and watch them like a hawk when they vote. If Republicans do win on Tuesday, it will be because Democrats stay home due to a lack of enthusiasm for their candidate."

The last time Nevada went Republican: 2004

President Verity Swayne: "I'm feeling very confident. I really think Romney is going to take New Hampshire. Although I am seeing a lot of Obama signs, this election will come right down to voting, and I think the fervor from 2010 is still around ... although you won't hear the media say that. Romney is certainly making his presence known here, and I think New Hampshire's citizens are invigorated to vote for him."

OF NOTE: Swayne says that the same fervor that led Republicans to win large majorities in the New Hampshire legislature in 2010 is still alive and well in 2012.

The last time New Hampshire went Republican: 2000

President Dena Barnes: "We are getting strong results back and feel cautiously optimistic, but the Democrats are still working. We did a lot of calling today, and I'm still getting people saying they are going for Obama, so we are working hard and not taking anything for granted. Republican women are handing out voter cards, working as poll watchers, and manning the phones at the victory centers. We're really looking good with our outreach to women and to Hispanic voters."

The last time North Carolina went Republican: 2004

President Jean Turner: "I am very optimistic. I think Ohio is going to go for Romney. The crowds for Romney are just enormous. I see a lot more enthusiasm for Romney this year, compared to that for McCain in 2008."

The last time Ohio went Republican: 2004

President Margaret Recupido: "We're going to do it! I know how tough it is here in Pennsylvania, but if we can bring out our people, we will do very well. Many of us Republican women are committee people, and we're working hard and will on Election Day, too. I have gotten a very good response on my walk-arounds. I think we have an exceptional chance of winning for the first time in nearly 25 years."

OF NOTE: Other than Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, most of Pennsylvania is Republican. Recupido says the state has a sizable and strong Catholic community that has rejected President Obama's overreaching into matters of conscience.

The last time Pennsylvania went Republican: 1988

President Jackie Trudell: "All the indications are that Wisconsin is going to go red. I believe Romney and Ryan are going to take the state, and I think that because Obama is planning two quick trips here, he knows he's in trouble. Federation members are working at victory centers. Those who live in safe, Republican areas are being deployed to help in areas where they're needed. I think we're going to go red, as long as everyone does their job, I really do."

OF NOTE: Republican Gov. Scott Walker handily won the recall election last summer, and the strong Republican infrastructure from that election is still in place. Plus, Wisconsin native and vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan is a favorite son.

The last time Wisconsin went Republican: 1984