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Electoral College Analysis: Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania's Electoral Votes: 21

Washington Post Analysis

Bush has made more than 40 trips to Pennsylvania since losing it by 5 percent (204,000 votes) in 2000 -- more visits than any other state. Republicans still have a big ad buy running this weekend and Bush may be back in Pittsburgh. But privately both sides expect the hoard of electoral votes to be in the Democratic column one more time.

The reasons are many: A massive voter registration drive that has swelled the potential Kerry majority from Philadelphia past 400,000; continued problems for Bush with socially liberal Republicans in the Philadelphia suburbs, which he lost to Gore in 2000; and job losses in the western Pennsylvania industrial areas, offsetting the appeal of his views on guns and abortion to its Catholic voters.

Republicans say they have a vastly improved voter-mobilization effort and expect big majorities in Lancaster County and other central Pennsylvania agricultural areas. Two late public polls show the candidates tied, but Republicans concede it would take a last-minute national tide for Bush to give him Pennsylvania.

Sen. Arlen Specter, the Senate's senior Republican moderate, had a tough time defeating conservative Rep. Pat Toomey (R) in the primary, but he has found his current opponent, Rep. Joseph M. Hoeffel III (D), less of a challenge.

In House races, state Sen. Allyson Schwartz (D) is favored over Melissa Brown (R) in Hoeffel's suburban district. Republicans have the edge in three other strongly contested races. State Sen. Charlie Dent (R) leads businessman Joe Driscoll (D) for Toomey's Allentown seat. Mike Fitzpatrick, a Bucks County commissioner, is likely to prevail over attorney Ginny Schrader (D) in a seat vacated by retiring Rep. James C. Greenwood (R). Freshman Rep. Jim Gerlach (R) has a strong challenger in attorney Lois Murphy (D) in yet another suburban enclave.

Overview
Bush, Kerry in Reach of Electoral Win
By David S. Broder, Dan Balz and Charles Babington
(The Washington Post, Oct. 31, 2004)

Recent Polls

Source: Reuters/Zogby
Respondents: 600 likely voters
Time: Oct. 29 - Nov. 1
Margin of Error: +/- 4.1%

Kerry 50%
Bush 46%
Other 1.1%
Undecided 4%

Source: Quinnipiac University
Respondents: 1,022 likely voters
Time: Oct. 27 - 31
Margin of Error: +/- 3%

Bush 47%
Kerry 47%
Other/Undecided 6%

Source: CNN-USA Today-Gallup
Respondents: 1,082 likely voters
Time: Oct. 28 - 30
Margin of Error: +/- 3%

Bush 50%
Kerry 46%
Undecided 4%

Source: MSNBC-Knight-Ridder (by Mason-Dixon)
Respondents: 625 likely voters
Time: Oct. 26 - 29
Margin of Error: +/- 4%

Kerry 48%
Bush 46%
Other/Undecided 6%

Source: Temple-Philadelphia Inquirer
Respondents: 1,488 likely voters
Time: Oct. 22 - 27
Margin of Error: +/- 3%

Kerry 48%
Bush 47%
Other/Undecided 5%

Source: West Chester University
Respondents: 684 likely voters
Time: Oct. 24 - 26
Margin of Error: +/- 4%

Kerry 50%
Bush 45%
Other/Undecided 5%

Source: Los Angeles Times
Respondents: 585 likely voters
Time: Oct. 22 - 26
Margin of Error: +/- 4%

Bush 48%
Kerry 48%
Undecided 4%

Source: American Research Group
Respondents: 600 likely voters
Time: Oct. 23 - 25
Margin of Error: +/- 4%

Kerry 50%
Bush 47%
Other/Undecided 3%

Is Nader on the ballot: No

Past Presidential Vote Breakdowns

2000
Gore (D): 51% Bush (R): 46%

1996
Clinton (D): 49%
Dole (R): 40%

1992
Clinton (D): 45%
Bush (R): 36%
Perot (I): 18%

1988
Bush (R): 51%
Dukakis (D): 48%

Current Elected Officials

name (party), year last elected, percent won

Governor:
Edward G. Rendell (D), 2002, 53%

Senators:
Rick Santorum (R), 2002, 52%
Arlen Specter (R), 1998 61%

House:
12 Republicans
7 Democrats

More on Pennsylvania

Two Trouble Spots for Bush: Iraq and the Philly Suburbs (The Washington Post, October 9, 2004)

All Pennsylvania Races

Discuss the Race to Win Pennsylvania

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