The biggest thing saving us from the scourge of a Romney Presidency is the stupidity known as the Electoral College. 2012 Presidential Election Interactive Map and History of the Electoral College If Obama carries the 19 states and DC the Democrats have consistantly carried over the last five presidential elections, he starts the game at 242 electoral votes. Of those states, only PA is considered in play, and that's a lot of wishful thinking on someone's part. Meanwhile, Romney's floor are the states that John McCain Carried. (Bush also carried them, and Bob Dole and Bush's father carried most of them. That starts him off at 179 in theory. (If you assume he also has to fight for that one elector in Nebraska that is apportioned). However, two states McCain won might not be sure things for Romney. Missouri Obama only lost by about 5,000 votes. Arizona was McCain's home state, but the surge of Hispanics there put it into play. Of course, if Romney is struggling in those states come November, he's probably doing so badly everywhere else that he's already lost. We will also be generous and say that Indiana was a fluke that Obama won it, and give that to Romney. So that puts Romney at 190. The election will really come down to nine states I'll call "the Purple Gang". They have 105 electors plus that one in Nebraska. Three of those states could be called Violet. - New Hampshire, Iowa and New Mexico. Democrats carried them four of the last five elections, and Obama is polling well in all three. So for sake of argument, let's give these to Obama in any but a worst case scenario. That's another 15 bringing Obama up to 257. So really, Obama just needs 13 more. Of the Remaining 6 purples, Obama could win just one of the following and get 270. - FL (29) OH (18) NC (15) or Virginia (13) . Romney could win all four and still be five electors short. He would also need to pick up either one of the remaining Purples - CO (9) or NV (6). Now, Bush was able to pull this off, while peeling of some of the violets from time to time. But Bush was a member of a political dynasty leading a united party against weak opponents. And even then, he won only by the skin of his teeth in Florida in 2000 and Ohio in 2004.