So in my class on the Executive branch, we were given a game to play where you try to get your candidate elected. The rules are simple, money is spent on each state in various forms, states with no money spent on them cannot be won, and states favorable to your ideology create multipliers for the money spent in them. The obvious strategy is to consolidate your base, try to undermine theirs, and then duke it out over the battle ground states (Ohio, Florida, etc). Both sides write down all their spending, then the game is played out based upon the initial setup (it's more meant to be fun than accurate).
I was assigned to elect a Republican into office, and I decided to take a different approach. I spent no money in any states outside of the North East (the Virginias was the but off), and those poured all of my assets into his strongest base. I'm guessing that he won't expect that much put into the area, and I should be able to sweep the region, but it means I will lose every other state, and thus the election. However, I figure that any candidate, regardless of what they call themselves, who takes the inter-mountain west, the south, as well as middle America, while losing the North East, is far more Republican than the candidate who loses the rest of the nation while sweeping the Democratic strongholds. Thus, as far as I'm concerned, I will win.
I doubt the teacher will agree with my reasoning, but I'm looking forward to class today to see the look on their faces!