Gallup: Just seven states left where GOP leads in party ID

Utah, Wyoming, Idaho, Alaska, Nebraska, Kansas, and Alabama, and the last two are barely red. Total combined electoral votes: 35. The news isn’t quite as dismal as it seems — Texas is technically a blue state by this measure, even though it’s reliably red at election time — but eyeball the map at the link and note how many southern states are suddenly leaning Democratic. Jay Cost has a long, thoughtful post on how Republicans have traditionally overcome the ID advantage (hint: superior turnout and an uneasy coalition in the broad Democratic base), but toss a galvanizing figure like The One into the mix and it becomes a lot harder to pull off.

Cost’s other big point is that partisan trends can shift very rapidly, so if the crap sandwich is as crappy as we think, the map will surely be redder by 2012. Even so, I don’t envy whoever’s tasked with dethroning the Messiah. Exit question: How do you out-organize an incumbent who built the most fearsome national organization in modern political history?