Pre-season Quarterbacking

Memo to Campaign Organizers: You might want to call Nate Bloomquist. He’s got the whole thing figured out. November 2 isn’t the day that will determine who sits in the Oval Office. Nor are the candidates, who are out there on the hustings right now, chowing down on crawfish, kraut and other local delicacies, the key players in this game. In fact, all this criss-crossing the country is a waste of time.

Decision day is really October 31.

A lot of folks probably missed Nate’s analysis of the election, seeing as how he’s not a Beltway Bigfoot. But we here at Campaign Desk have come to discover that some of the most startling reporting emanates from unexpected quarters, and in this instance, it’s the Green Bay Press-Gazette. (Okay, so we’re a little late, but we can’t be everywhere all the time.)

The deciding factor in the presidential election, according to Bloomquist, will be the outcome of the Washington Redskins-Green Bay Packers game two days before voters head to the polls. Eighteen straight pre-election Redskins games have predicted the presidency, Bloomquist writes. If the Redskins win, Bush wins. If they lose or tie, look for the moving van that’s headed from Washington D.C. to Crawford, Texas.

Clearly, the candidates don’t know this. In fact, George Bush resumes his bus tour, visiting Wisconsin tomorrow, where a new poll gives the president a 50 percent approval rating, up four points since March. That same Badger Poll shows Kerry trailing Bush by 12 percentage points in a state that is regarded as crucial to the election’s outcome.

John Kerry will address Democratic leaders in Arizona, another key battleground state, tomorrow, and then he heads to Louisiana for the Democratic Family Jambalaya Jamboree in Baton Rouge. Kerry clearly thinks this kind of nonsense will add Louisiana to his win column; this will make his third visit to the state in over a month.

John, please. George, please. Can a system that has called 18 presidential elections in a row be wrong? Instead of spending the next six months out there on the Pepto-Bismol trail, you might do better to stay home and schmooze up Joe Gibbs, the Redskins’ legendary coach. You heard it here first (unless you’re a regular reader of the Green Bay Press-Gazette.)


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Susan Q. Stranahan wrote for CJR.