Well, I held off for as long as I could but with the first of the two big conventions about to begin, and with one of the VP picks announced, I can keep quiet no longer! I just have too much to say.
About the selection of Biden as Obama's VP selection, others have said much more than I can. The consensus seems to be that he is a "safe pick," but one with lots of areas for attack by McCain (who has apparently already got an ad out with some of Biden's less flattering comments about Obama). The VP rarely wins a race for the nominee, but could certainly hamper success. I do not think this choice helps Obama, but nor does it hurt him too much.
However, what does hurt Obama is stuff like this. This author's thesis is that the only possible reason Obama could lose is because the USA is a horribly racist nation. Apparently I cannot vote for McCain because I think Obama's positions are bad for the Country and for me. Even if I think that is what I am doing, then I am wrong - secretly, I must be racist. So much for Dr. King: "I long for the day when a man is judged by the content of his character not the color of his skin." If Obama's supporters are starting to accuse those who oppose him of racism, then he has already lost the moral battle, if not the election.
And that brings me to the key point of this post - a prediction, or more specifically, several of them, about the upcoming elections. First, I am afraid that Obama has lost it. He lacks organization, he lacks a message, he has wasted his money, he has tossed too many people under the bus, and he is just not ready for prime time. McCain will win with 338 to 200 electoral college votes (how? Well, of the swing states he will get NH, FL, PA, OH, MI, IA, MN, CO, NM, and NV - I think that gives him 338 votes). I think either Romney or Palin will be his VP.
So there are two predictions, but I am not yet done. What about the senate and the house races? Prevailing wisdom suggests that the Dems will gain seats in both, extending their majorities. I am not so sure. I think in the house, the Dems will lose seats. The current balance is I believe, 236 democrats and 199 republicans. That majority (of 37 votes) will be reduced to between 5 and 15 votes (i.e. about 220 to 225 democrats, and 215 to 210 republicans). The democrats are being killed on energy policy at present, and will suffer for it in the elections. In the senate, changes will be less. Right now the senate is 49 dems, 49 reps, and two independents who generally vote with the dems. The two independents are not running this year. I predict we will end up with no more than 2 seats changed each way (thus maybe 51 dems and 47 reps or 51 reps and 47 dems at most).
I know these are not in any way standard wisdom at present, but I think this is how things are going to work out this time.