The key part of the analysis is in Purple States, those that neither candidate won by 6 points or more last time around. These are the states that are most likely to lead to a different outcome than last time, as the states that voted strongly red or blue last time still lean that way. Those earning Purple status are New Hampshire, Pennsylvania, Ohio, Michigan, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa, Florida, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, and Oregon.
In these states, Barack and Hillary both hold a four point lead over McCain, a pretty slim margin considering the circumstances favoring democrats this year.
This is why the evolving Barack story line is so damaging for democrats. As voters become conscious of his lack of a professional track record, his dubious associations, and his elitist attitude, McCain will look all the more appealing, particularly in more moderate states.
McCain is, after all, a guy who does what Barack hopes to do - he reaches across party lines to make friends and compromises. McCain is the proven "Together We Can" guy. And middle of the road voters, in states like Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania, are more likely to vote for someone with a track record of success than a beginner selling hope.