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View Diary: More accurate than Nate Silver or Markos—and simple, too (70 comments)

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  •  This is awesome (10+ / 0-)

    and actually provides support for one of my intuitions about polling and final results -- that the undecided vote will go to the candidate who best reflects his or her state's partisan lean.

    I never sweat Massachusetts, because I never expected the undecided vote to go to Brown. Had Mourdock kept his mouth shut, he would've won Indiana easily.

    North Dakota was the one state that bucked the trend, but Heitkamp was close enough to 50, and the state was small enough that retail politics actually mattered.

    •  Thanks! (7+ / 0-)

      Your intuition is supported because intuition is just another word for pattern recognition, really (albeit one that is often used to belittle those without formal training).

      I very much wish we had an exit poll from North Dakota. What I find most intriguing is that Nate's model didn't do any better than the polling average in Senate races. There's something interesting going on there, and I don't know what it is.

    •  The other thing about North Dakota (5+ / 0-)

      is that it's one of the states that has the strongest tradition of ticket-splitting. In the Dakotas, voting Republican for President and Democratic for at least one Congressional race is the rule, rather than the exception. There are a decreasing number of states like that, but they still have to be accounted for in any predictive model.

      By the way, I'm unconvinced Mourdock would have won Indiana "easily" if he had avoided his rape comment. There were already a lot of extreme things he said that were being used against him. According to poll results, Donnelly was a slight underdog, not a clear blowout loser. If you want to take things all the way back and suggest an alternate world in which Mourdock said no extremist things ever, how would he have had a chance to defeat Lugar in a primary? His whole platform for defeating Lugar was that Lugar was essentially a wimp and he was the real conservative.

      Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

      by MichaelNY on Fri Nov 16, 2012 at 01:52:08 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Donnelly (1+ / 0-)
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        was stuck in the low 40s. Getting to a majority was going to be extremely difficult. My education was formed in the 2004 Senate race in Oklahoma, where I thought Brad Carson had a fighting chance against crazy-talking Tom Coburn. It was 44-44! A tied race!

        Carson lost 42-53. Donnelly was headed toward the same path, irrespective of all of Mourdock's craziness. It just turned out that rape was a step too far.

        •  I don't think it's so clear that was going to be (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          Donnelly's fate. His electoral fate depended on the hard-to-predict choices of Lugar voters. That was a separate dynamic from the Oklahoma race you discuss.

          Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

          by MichaelNY on Fri Nov 16, 2012 at 11:25:55 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  By the way, I do accept that Donnelly was (0+ / 0-)

          a bit behind in polling before the rape remarks, and you could be right that he was heading for a substantial loss, but I thought in advance of that debate that he had at least a 40% chance of winning. That could be naivete' on my part, but I do believe that non-extremist Lugar voters were already upset with Mourdock and concerned that he wasn't the kind of levelheaded person they wanted representing their state.

          Formerly Pan on Swing State Project

          by MichaelNY on Sat Nov 17, 2012 at 12:44:42 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

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