MOODY'S: These Are The Swing Counties Obama Needs To Win Ohio

Moody’s Analytics, the sister company of the ratings agency, has taken its electoral forecasting to the next level, unveiling a new model that dives into county-by-county predictions in key swing states.   

The first county forecast, released this week, breaks down Ohio, a crucial battleground state that is considered a must-win for both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney. 

Like the national forecast, the county model shows the President winning Ohio, although by a slightly slimmer margin (51 per cent compared to 52 per cent). It also shows the race in Ohio is still fluid, and identifies key swing counties, where the candidates could pull off upsets that could affect the outcome of the race. 

Here’s the list of counties that are most likely to swing the state: 

moodys ohio swing county list

Photo: Moody’s Analytics

And here’s the map: 

moody's ohio swing county map

Photo: Moody’s Analytics

Moody’s Analytics economist Dan White notes that the most high-profile of these counties is Hamilton, a traditional Republican stronghold where Cincinnati is located. Obama flipped the county in 2008, but would have to beat the model’s 1.5% average forecasting error to win the state again. Wood, Sandusky, and Stark counties are the other most likely pickups for the President. 

For Romney, the biggest prize would be Mahoning County, a blue-collar county in northeast Ohio. The region, home to Youngstown, has traditionally leaned Democratic, but has been hit hard by the economic downturn. 

As the Romney campaign ramps up its efforts in Ohio, there is evidence that they might be looking at these numbers. Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan will speak at a rally in Youngstown on Saturday. 

Now check out the eight counties that will decide the election > 

Business Insider Emails & Alerts

Site highlights each day to your inbox.

Follow Business Insider Australia on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram.