Why is Lilibet Hagel’s endorsement important?
Well, Nebraska splits its electoral votes evenly among 5 different areas, and Obama’s campaign has made a very concerted effort to try and win the Omaha area and its 1 electoral vote. Why? To avoid a 269-269 tie scenario, which is actually possible this season.
Long story short, an endorsement from one of Nebraska’s “first ladies” could actually matter to moderate Republican and Independent women who are fence sitting right now.
She said it will be her first endorsement of a Democrat and that perilous world conditions were a factor.
“The fact is we’re in two wars, two of the longest we’ve ever been in. We’ve run up a third of our nation’s debt in just the past eight years. We’re in the biggest financial crisis since the Great Depression,” she said.
The Hagels know John and Cindy McCain, and she said her endorsement was not meant to slam them.
“This isn’t anti-McCain. This is pro-Obama. I’m just convinced he’s the right person,” she said.
And when asked if the Nebraska Senator be next, Lilibet answered, “You’d have to ask him.”
I’ll take that as a very strong maybe.
A commenter writes…
Nebraska does not split its electoral vote evenly among 5 areas, it assigns 2 votes statewide and the other three by congressional district. As electoral votes are assigned on the basis of a stateâ€™s congressional delegation, this distribution is analogous to having the two statewide votes represent the stateâ€™s senators, etc.
Secondly, the idea that this one vote is a bulwark against a tied electoral college doesnâ€™t stand. There is no realistic scenario in which Obama wins this district, but only 268 other electoral votes.
You’re right that I’m wrong about the electoral allocation, but the net effect is the same. And according to FiveThirtyEight.com, Obama is only 5 points behind McCain in the 2nd Congressional district.
Also, this district is a tie-breaker, not a tie-maker. That’s why I said, “to avoid a…”
Thanks for the correction.