PORTLAND -- Oregon GOP chairman Allen Alley believes Oregon and its seven electoral votes could send Mitt Romney to the the White House.
The scenario is a distinct possibility if Romney defeats Barack Obama in five of the "battleground states," he said.
The list of swing states compiled by political analysts as of the third week of July includes Florida, Ohio, Colorado, Virginia, North Carolina, Nevada, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, Iowa and Pennsylvania.
Alley's strategic map lists Indiana, Ohio, Virginia, North Carolina and Florida. Of those, Indiana, Virginia and North Carolina had been Republican strongholds until 2008.
And Oregon is on Alley's map.
While Obama carried with Oregon with a 16 percent margin in 2008, Alley said some polls show the margin has dwindled to single digits. Romney could take the election with 273 of the needed 270 electoral votes, the last seven provided by Oregon, Alley said.
"As the state gets closer and closer and closer," Alley said, "President Obama has to figure out, is he going to come here and campaign, is he going to rally the troops, like he did last time."
The last time was 2008, when Obama drew an estimated 80,000 to Waterfront Park.
Unlike the prevailing sentiment among national political observers, all of whom have Oregon going with Obama, Alley sees a chance for Romney to take the state.
"If it narrows any more, they're both going to have to come back," he said.
Oregonian political writer Jeff Mapes told KGW neither side has really started campaigning in Oregon. Voters will know when, Mapes said, as the saturation TV ads begin.