How important is Michigan?

Looking at the 2008 and 2010 vote totals in MI, some extremely surprising results stick out. In just Oakland and Wayne counties alone, half a million more people voted (D) in 2008, than in 2010. Barry won MI with 800K more votes than McCain and nearly 800K more people voted (D) for Barry than voted for Snyder in 2010 in only 8 counties. The (R) vote was about the same. The (R)’s didn’t gain the 800K votes. The 800K votes just didn’t show up in 2010.

Is this just an off year election result or is this a portend to the 2012 election in MI? Is Barry going to be able to get those 800K fickle voters to the polls like he did in 2008? The 8 counties in question were heavily African-American and college-age/teacher registered counties. What is a little more difficult to figure is that MI lost a little population to the 2010 Census. But Wayne County lost 250K people and this is where most of Barry’s decisive votes came from. Now I guess the question is, did the people leave after the 2008 election due to economic conditions or has it been a steady trickle out since 2000? My guess is that a whole lot of those people left from 2007 to 2010, probably to TX where there were jobs and that is represented in the 2010 election figures along with normal off-year election voter apathy. Take Kalamzoo County for instance where Barry won 60% of the vote in 2008, Snyder won 60% of the vote in 2010. And Macomb and Muskegon counties were the same flip flop 60% for Barry in 2008 and 60% for Snyder in 2010. The (R) vote stayed about the same and the (D) vote dropped off precipitously.

Why is it important to analyze voter trends in MI? Because if Barry loses MI, he loses the election. If there is a candidate in the GOP ranks that can successfully challenge BHO in MI, then that candidate is probably the one that the GOP needs to nominate. The McCain campaign never believed that they could compete in MI. McCain wasn’t well known there, didn’t win the GOP primary and he was certainly not popular, but he still received over 2 million votes.

The unemployment rate in MI when Barry was elected was 8.4% and now 11%. And that is after 250K people moved out of Wayne County to other states. My gut feeling is that Presidents don’t get re-elected with 11% unemployment rates, but maybe I’m wrong.

Unemployment rates in Battleground States:

NC 6.4 Nov 2008 and now 9.7%

PA 5.0 and now 8.0%

FL 7.5 and now 10.6

VA 4.5 and now 6.3

OH 7.0 and now 9.0

IN 6.1 and now 8.8

NV 8.0 and now 13.2

CO 5.4 now 9.2