Yep. I’ll vote, I’ll contribute money to Tammy Duckworth and President Barack Obama, but Campaign 2012 is, for the most part, a forgone conclusion.
Here’s why I think so.
I think several entities have a vested interest in representing this election as a close race, despite what Intrade (http://www.intrade.com/v4/markets/contract/?contractId=743474), ElectoralVote.com, and the polls suggest.
First, the legacy media (NBC, FOX, newspapers, et al) want DRAMA. If there is no drama, if there are no headlines, if there is nothing to scream about, people will tune out and look for entertainment elsewhere. And >poof!< go the advertising dollars, even the political advertising dollars that come in at their lowest rates.
Second, the campaigns themselves need the horse-race in order to justify their repeated pleas for contributions and to gin up support from their base. Do you think the big contributors on the Obama side are so disenchanted that they have decided to sit this one out? No, they’re the “smart money” and know the real score — they see no need to escalate and will remain on the sidelines until or unless the outcome starts to look questionable. There is a LOT of dry powder in the Obama camp.
Third, the down-ticket candidates (and thus, the two party apparatus) need the appearance of a close presidential race in order to benefit from increased voter turnout. If voters see the presidential race as a foregone conclusion, they are likely to stay home and not vote for anyone else either, from judges and aldermen to senators and representatives. These candidates don’t only need the votes piggy-backed from the presidential candidates, but they also need high turnout in order to have a greater semblance of legitimacy once they assume office.
As for a VP pick, if Romney wanted to make the race interesting, he should try to get Colin Powell to join him. I don’t know what kind of deal Powell would want to extort from Romney and the Republican Party to join the ticket but, whatever it is, they should take it.