electoral-map-predictionThe key to the upcoming election is the economy according to Political science professors Kenneth Bickers of CU-Boulder and Michael Berry of CU Denver. Their analysis of state-by-state factors leading to the Electoral College selection has been on the money since 1980 and is forecasting that the 2012 winner will be Mitt Romney, in large fashion.

“Based on our forecasting model, it becomes clear that the president is in electoral trouble,” said Bickers, who also serves as director of the Colorado University in Washington DC Internship Program. “What is striking about our state-level economic indicator forecast is the expectation that Obama will lose almost all of the states currently considered as swing states, including North Carolina, Virginia, New Hampshire, Colorado, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, Ohio and Florida.”

According to Berry:

“For the last eight presidential elections, this model has correctly predicted the winner. The economy has seen some improvement since President Obama took office. What remains to be seen is whether voters will consider the economy in relative or absolute terms. If it’s the former, the president may receive credit for the economy’s trajectory and win a second term. In the latter case, Romney should pick up a number of states Obama won in 2008.”

When just the two major political parties are analyzed the data predicts Romney will win 52.9 percent of the popular vote as opposed to Obama’s 47.1 percent.

The impressive CU model has correctly predicted all elections since 1980, including 1980 and 1992, two years which saw strong showings from independent candidates. It also correctly predicted the highly contested 2000 election, when the most popular vote went to Al Gore but George Bush winning the electoral vote. Also impressive was it’s 2004 prediction of a George Bush second term.

The Colorado University Electoral College model is the only forecast model of its type to include more than one state-level measure of economic conditions, which is responsible for it’s sharp focus and perfect track record.

The current data was taken in May, five months prior to the Nov. 6 election and the professors plan to update it with more current economic data later this month.