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Maybe this is just worded very strangely... BUT:

The FiveThirtyEight forecast did show a clear shift toward Mr. Romney on Friday, giving him a 15.1 percent chance of winning the Electoral College — up from 12.9 percent on Thursday.

My subjective view is that, despite the somewhat mixed messages that the polls gave about the magnitude of Mr. Romney’s bounce, this is still too conservative. The forecast model is pretty “smart” about distinguishing random movements in the polls from real ones, and so can be fairly conservative in interpreting the data. However, it does not have the advantage of knowing that the shifts may have come for a good reason — in this case, Mr. Romney’s strong performance in the debate.

So I would bet on Mr. Romney right now given the odds the model offers — but I’d have done so more confidently before the morning’s jobs report.

Does he mean that he's betting on a stronger bounce for Romney? Or he'd be on Romney winning?

Talk me down.

It's going to be a long weekend.

Oct. 5: Day After Debate, Strong Swing State Polls for Romney


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Comment Preferences

  •  nate (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    JoanMar, cdub24

    Nate, you need to clarify this.. geez , I hope this isn't a massive jump...

  •  %85 chance of Obama winning is pretty high (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koNko, majcmb1

    Frankly I don't believe his models, nobody has that low of a chance of winning but Romney going  %13 to %15 is nothing to be excited about.

    •  It's just an average of averages (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      At the end of the equation, Nate Silver is just averaging the averages.  Sure, he weights the economy, but that's actually one of those cases where reality contradicts common sense, since the economy doesn't drag an incumbent down as hard as we tend to assume.

  •  Easy there (15+ / 0-)

    Pretty sure what he's saying is just that if his model says 15.1% for Romney and he had to place a bet on how accurate that CHANCE is, he would bet on Romney's odds being higher than 15.1%.  That doesn't mean he'd bet on a Romney win.  

  •  I think he's speaking in betting terms. (8+ / 0-)

    Like, the odds of Romney winning are low, so betting on him would get a large payout.  If there's perception that he could perform better than expected, then you might decide to place a small bet on Romney on the off chance it pays off.

    •  i don't gamble so all that makes no sense (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      blueoasis, MKSinSA

      he needs to clarify

      wouldn't the return have been more before the debate since Romney's chances are lower?

      Also - I don't like this betting talk.


    •  If so then he is an idiot (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      royce, koNko

      If Obama's chances of winning were %87 yesterday and %85 today, you would still bet on Obama.    

      A sure way to lose money at the track is to always bet on the longshot (no matter how small the bet.)    The next surest way is to cover your bet on the favorite with a bet on the longshot.    (The next surest way is to bet at all, but I digress..)

      This is true even if you think that the odds don't represent the real odds (but the real odds are still low.)  

      This is why the roulette wheel is so popular for the casinos, a sure moneymaker.    Our gut instincts (think of how great it would be to make millions off of one bet) are at, um, "odds" with statistical reality.

      •  There's a difference between a horse race (0+ / 0-)

        where there's a concrete reality, and a statistical model on a race which is still in the distant future.
        The "facts on the track" make mincemeat of the abstract determination of the odds.
        In this case, the entire discussion is enclosed within an abstract, mathematical framework.
        That, of course, will come to an end on Nov. 6.
        By Nov. 5, the models will have narrowed the "cone of uncertainty", to borrow from hurricane prediction.
        The terms and metaphors can be borrowed from gambling without an exact equivalency between the two situations.

        You can't make this stuff up.

        by David54 on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:51:40 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

      •  ? (0+ / 0-)

        The best way to beat the odds is to place bets whose expected payoff is as large as possible -- and to place lots of them. You aren't likely to make money by betting on one long shot, but if you find enough bets in your favor, the Law of Large Numbers works for you. Of course that only works if you can find bets in your favor.

        I have a friend who, as a hobby, consistently makes money betting on horses by placing many small bets that she (evidently usually correctly) believes to have positive expected value. (In New York, at least, you can quickly place many small bets "boxing"(?) certain groups of horses.)

        (I also know someone who made money at roulette, using a system that let him predict with some accuracy the part of the wheel in which the ball would land.)

        I think Nate lost a lot of people there because even most people who bet don't do it systematically enough for such a strategy to work.

        Election protection: there's an app for that!
        Better Know Your Voting System with the Verifier!

        by HudsonValleyMark on Sat Oct 06, 2012 at 03:43:28 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

  •  I think... (6+ / 0-)

    He means a strong bounce over the next week.

    Why is Mitt Rmoney so happy that an American embassy was attacked? Why does he hate America?

    by RichM on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:11:00 PM PDT

  •  Relax (6+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    terjeanderson, KHKS, wu ming, koNko, cosette, zhimbo

    Nate is just saying he thinks Romneys off are better than the model. Which makes it a good bet.

  •  Talk you down? OK, can do. (18+ / 0-)

    President Obama is still going to win, handily. This debate performance isn't going to matter one bit in the end. The strong jobs report was many times more important that the debate performance.

    I've been following elections for a long time, and I've still not seen anything to make me nervous about this presidential election. The president is already well on his way to reelection. Bank on it!

  •  lemme try.. but you might not like it.. (7+ / 0-)

    My guess is that Nate believes the polls will in fact narrow from here..

    So if today you can get odds based on his model .. then tomorrow when the odds narrow, you can sell and close out the position for a gain.

    He is not saying he would bet on Romney to win.. only that he thinks his model will show a closer race next week or two.. so bet Romney now.. sell Romney ten..

    he is talking short-term traders game.. capitalize on what looks like odds that are too high in Obama's favor..

    Note... this is not inconsistent for him at all.. his model hasa shown a closer race and narrower odds on election day than on his "today-forecast"..

    hope that helps.

  •  He would place a bet on Romney at these odds (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jdsnebraska, KHKS, RichM, koNko, itskevin

    I.e., the odds in his forecast are too low right now.

    The pleasure of hating...eats into the heart of religion...[and] makes patriotism an excuse for carrying fire, pestilence, and famine into other lands. - W. Hazlitt

    by rfahey22 on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:12:23 PM PDT

  •  Not worded well (3+ / 0-)

    I think he is speaking like someone reading a betting line - if the line has him with only a 15% chance of winning, then he'd bet on Romney having a better chance than that.

    It would be like he said his model shows Romney getting say 200 EVs - he'd say take the over.

    Just my guess, not certain.

  •  Huh? (5+ / 0-)

    We had this problem with error rates in handwriting recognition. When I joined the team they always talked about their success rate so "83% accuracy" or "85% accuracy". The problem is you don't get a real sense of the improvement, especially as you drove things into the 90+% range. So we flipped the numbers around and talked about error rate. Going from 15% to 13% seems like a huge jump but it means the accuracy went from 85% to 87%. Nothing to get all crazy over. That's what happened here. Romney's win chance is the error rate and that's all they are -- an error rate.

    If we got Mitt to be slightly less dishonest and gave him some personality he could pass as a used car salesman.

    by ontheleftcoast on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:12:56 PM PDT

  •  ok now I'm starting to worry!!! wtf (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    wrong time for obama to let romney back in the game ugh ugh ugh

    "I'm not mad at them (tea party) for being loud, I'm mad at us for being silent for the last two years. Where have we been"? "it was never yes HE can, it was Yes WE can". - Van Jones

    by sillycilla on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:15:53 PM PDT

  •  Oh please (11+ / 0-)

    All he's saying is that today's forecast, according to his model, is understating Romney's true standing in the race.

    So say Romney goes from a 15% to a 25% chance of winning. If you make that bet, and sell at 25%, you can make a 67% return on your money.

    So on $10,000, you'd make a $6,700 return. That's pretty nice.

    But Romney still ends up having no better than a 1 in 4 chance of winning. His odds have been extremely low at 538. Any bump, even from horrible to just very, very bad, could make bettors real money.

    PS. Don't forget that Nate's a gambler. He loves (or loved, anyway) online poker.

  •  LYING is not WINNING -- I'm sick of this rap (4+ / 0-)

    Sure -- Feisty Mitt turned it on for Wednesday's debate and the media jumped all over themselves screaming "Romney Won, Romney Won -- Did You Hear Me, Romney WON."  As we know, Mitt lied through his a** with no shame.

    But since when is lying repeatedly on every topic (27+ lies in 38 minutes) WINNING?  What a sad statement of America today.

  •  Its about the odds (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koNko, itchyredness

    "So I would bet on Mr. Romney right now given the odds the model offers." That means he thinks a 15% chance of winning is too low.

    If someone offered a bet with those odds ( A $1 bet gets you $6.67 if Romney wins) he would take it, because he thinks Romney's chances are higher than that - maybe 20% or so.

    He still has Obama as more likely to win, though.

  •  He is describing it in Intrade terms (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    koNko, cosette, Wee Mama, MKSinSA, peglyn

    Buy Romney at 30% chance of winning, and if he rises to 40% chance, you can then sell your Romney shares at a profit and make some money.

    Interestingly, Romney's actual odds on Intrade have not yet changed greatly since the debate - he's still mired at 33%. During most of the summer, it was more like 45% to Obama's 55%. So if Romney does get a bump in the polls over the next week, Nate's advice could turn out to be literally true.

  •  Frank Luntz just told Bill Maher that he (18+ / 0-)

    thinks Obama will win.
    I have seen nothing in the polls that would have me believe that there has been any major shift toward Romney.

  •  He's saying he'd take Romney with those points nt (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    earicicle, koNko
  •  the lie (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Smoh, koNko, AnnieWest, Wee Mama

    538's model gives Romney a 15% chance of winning right now.

    Nate thinks Romney's odds are better than 15%, but the mode only says 15% because it is designed to adjust slowly over time.

    No need to freak.

    The day may come, when the rest of the animal creation may acquire those rights which never could have been withholden from them but by the hand of tyranny.

    by Tetris on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:25:26 PM PDT

  •  Those Strong Swing State Polls All Repub Pollsters (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Smoh, MKSinSA, freesia

    leaning at least.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:25:47 PM PDT

  •  luntz (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Smoh, cosette, mirandasright

    Thats pretty good from Luntz..  i know we don't like him.. but he knows his numbers.. and he likely know stuff we don't even know.. maybe campaign internals?  thats decent news...

  •  I think the jobs report wiped out Mitt's bounce (5+ / 0-)

    Over the next few days, it's taken the conversation off the actual performance at the debate. So has Big Bird.

    O great creator of being grant us one more hour to perform our art and perfect our lives. ::: Jim Morrison :::

    by Kevanlove on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:26:27 PM PDT

  •  Others have already explained Nate means a good (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Losty, koNko

    bet at 15%, however.

    Nate doesn't think Rasmussen is a fraud (to my knowledge) and he probably thinks We Ask America's polls just need the proper weighting.

    Here's what Sam Wang at Princeton Election Consortium had to say.  He uses only State polling:

    The Meta-Analysis, a snapshot of today’s conditions, has taken a remarkably sharp and large downtick for President Obama. This comes with a massive polling release from three Republican-leaning pollsters: Rasmussen, Gravis, and We Ask America. Just think – what are the odds that they would all come out of the gate so fast and all at once? It’s almost like they planned it. I guess the true size of the change will get sorted out over the next 1-2 days.
    The poll that concerns me most is Reuters, but even that is an online poll with a history of volatility and must be taken in the context of two superior polls (IMHO) Gallup and RAND, both of which showed a slight uptick for OUR GUY.
    •  But Gallup is a 7 day tracker so only (0+ / 0-)

      1 of the 7 days was after the debate. We won't know the full story from Gallup until about next Wednesday.

      I'm a dyslexic agnostic insomniac. I lie awake at night wondering if there's a dog.

      by rennert on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:30:43 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  Nate Believes that Romney Now Leads Obama (0+ / 0-)

    According to Nate, Obama had a strong lead coming into the debate. The day after the debate, Obama's lead dropped by two points. However, the latest polls show Obama's lead down to about two points. Because these polls are tracking polls, that is, results from seven days ago are still in the data, Mitt probably now has the lead.

    However, Nate does not know how permanent these changes are. One big factor is today's jobs report. We will have to wait until next week to see whether Romney's rise in popularity is a bump or something permanent.

    •  I incumbent coughing up a lead (0+ / 0-)

      in October is usually the beginning of the end.

    •  where did you get "Romney leads"? He does not. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      joanil, itskevin, roycej

      Nate has not said that. Give us the Nate quote then......

      •  Here (0+ / 0-)

        "In a poll of about 500 voters that Ipsos conducted immediately after the debate, late Wednesday night and early Thursday morning, Mr. Obama still led by 5 points. However, Mr. Obama’s lead was just 2 points in a poll Ipsos released Friday, which included interviews from Monday night (before the debate) through Friday morning.

        The inference I make from these Ipsos polls is that Mr. Romney must have polled very well in the most recent interviews it conducted, late Thursday and early Friday morning, quite possibly leading Mr. Obama, in order to have made up so much ground.


        So I would bet on Mr. Romney right now given the odds the model offers — but I’d have done so more confidently before the morning’s jobs report.


        It’s going to take a few more days for the forecast model to catch up to the news, and I don’t think there’s any alternative but to keep an open mind about the polls for right now."

        Thus, Nate believes that Romney may have taken a temporary national lead on Obama. However, the good jobs report may reverse this.

        •  clever use of ellipses (0+ / 0-)

          But there's quite a bit of article between those statements and you seem to be confusing Nate's personal opinion with his assessment of possible single-day results in a single tracking poll.

          •  My Take (0+ / 0-)

            Nate is saying that state polls are showing a big surge for Romney so that he is now leading in Ohio, Virginia and Florida in some polls. Because these polls tend to be conservative leading, they are not reliable in indicating whether Romney is actually leading. Nevertheless, the national polls are still underestimating the Romney bounce. He uses the IPSOS poll to give an example of why the national polls will show Romney with a bigger bounce next week, and quite possibily they will show that Romney is in the lead. The questions is whether the bounce is temporary or permanent. Nate is betting that the bounce is permanent despite the good job's report.

            •  that's your take, not Nate's (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              HudsonValleyMark, peglyn

              This isn't Hegel. Nate's writing is convoluted, but it's not that obscure.

              If Nate were expecting Romney to hit 50% in the election forecast, he would have said that.

              Again, he simply said that Romney likely got a bounce and his standing should improve based on a handful of positive polls. On that, we agree.

              He did not say that the IPSOS result shows that Romney will take the national lead across the board. He just said that Romney did very well in one day of IPSOS, possibly leading in that day.

              He also did not say that he thinks the bounce will be permanent, just that he thinks there will be a bounce.

              With that said, the model itself predicts "tightening" from the current Nowcast, so some Romney gains in the coming week or so would not be wholly out of line with last week's numbers.

              As others have explained, the "bet" remark was simply saying to the model currently underestimating Romney, not that Romney is now the favorite.

    •  that's not what he said (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      itskevin, cdkipp

      He's talking in terms of political futures markets in which you place bets by buying shares on certain outcomes. He's saying Romney's value will likely rise in the coming days, though the jobs report may prevent that, not that Romney is the favorite to win today.

      If he was saying Romney had entered the lead, he would have said that. The article, like his article from earlier today, is about whether there will be a bounce. He thinks there will be, but after the jobs report, he's not as certain as he was earlier.

      This is actually a more positive prediction than the one where he predicted a 2% Romney bump.

      •  This is What He Said (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:

        "The inference I make from these Ipsos polls is that Mr. Romney must have polled very well in the most recent interviews it conducted, late Thursday and early Friday morning, quite possibly leading Mr. Obama, in order to have made up so much ground.

        •  that's not saying he thinks Romney has the lead (0+ / 0-)

          There, he's saying that, in the Ipsos poll (which, earlier, he noted was the most volatile and erratic of the tracking polls), Romney may have posted lead in a single-day result.

          If you think Nate will take a single-day result from a moderately-weighted tracker and infer that translates to an actual Romney lead, you don't know anything about Nate.

          And the "bet" remark is not referring to the possibility of a lead in a single-day result of that tracking poll but his belief that Romney probably got a small bump... though again, he's not certain if it will be cancelled out by the jobs report.

        •  he also notes that Obama gained in Gallup/RAND (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:

          ergo, he led in those polls.

          That's why the entire article is about whether a significant bounce even exists at this point.

      •  ok...I'll climb back from the ledge on t Verrazano (0+ / 0-)

        at least for a couple hours....

    •  I believe what he is saying is that bounce (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      itskevin, cosette, linnie, cdkipp

      for Romney, after his debate performance, is not fully shown yet in the forecast model.

      He doesn't say he leads Obama.

    •  Ummm...No. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      itskevin, cosette, N in Seattle

      But we can't go 48 hours here without a paroxysm of unnecessary handwringing and hyperventilating it seems.

      Please keep a small brown paper bag near your computer for the next few weeks. We don't wanna lose anyone.

      Ho'oponopono. To make things right; restore harmony; heal.

      by earicicle on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:43:24 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  one poll, one day (0+ / 0-)

      I believe Nate says the Reuters/Ipsos swing indicates that Romney likely led tnat poll in the last 24-hour period.

    •  this is totally wrong (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      itskevin, earicicle

      do you even read 538?

      •  dunno if you're asking me... (0+ / 0-)

        But I do read 538, which is where I saw this:

        "The inference I make from these Ipsos polls is that Mr. Romney must have polled very well in the most recent interviews it conducted, late Thursday and early Friday morning, quite possibly leading Mr. Obama, in order to have made up so much ground."

        •  there he's talking about single day results (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          wu ming, N in Seattle

          in the Ipsos poll, not his personal opinion.

          Nate has written two articles, including the one quoted here, about whether a bump even exists... and people are ignoring that and getting confused about him saying that Romney did well in a single tracking poll.

  •  Stop the panic! Obama has an 85% chance of (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:


    Everyone Chill the fuck out! I got this - unknown but credited to Barack Obama

    by natedogg265 on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:29:23 PM PDT

  •  Not to worry... (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Smoh, earicicle, itskevin, koNko, cosette

    ...Nate's model would be shit if he were saying that he'd bet on Romney while his model says 85% chance of Obama.

    He's saying it's going to get closer... then we'll see.

  •  Romney could win. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Smoh, RichM, cosette

    So could Obama. Obama's chances are better than Romney's, but Romney's are better than zero. 83% chance does not mean 100% sure thing. Stuff happens. But right now the odds favor Obama. They favor him TOO strongly, however based on the recent information. Nate said he'd take a bet, (if he gambled, which I take it he doesn't) based on those odds. That is not the same as saying he'll win, it just means his chances are greater than it appears (more than 15%)...maybe even twice as likely, but that still means Obama's more than 2-1 favorite (meaning he'd win 2 out of 3 times).

    I can't believe our election is being decided by people who can't tell the difference between republicans and democrats...that's like letting a dog choose what color to paint your house.

    by PBJ Diddy on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:33:51 PM PDT

    •  Of course he could win.. (0+ / 1-)
      Recommended by:
      Hidden by:

      and thanks to one of the most pitiful debate performances of my's now 50-50..


      the president has no one to blame but himself.

      •  What a load of shit (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        homogenius, S F Hippie

        You just wrote a bunch of nothing based on nothing.


        Talk about pulling numbers our your ass!!!!

        Do me a favor; don't post dogshit like that on this site.

        This is a better site than one where people make "factual" statements that are not based on any actual facts.

        That was a big letdown for the quality of this site.

        And you have no one to blame but yourself.

        We are the change we have been waiting for.

        by mellowinman on Sat Oct 06, 2012 at 12:36:08 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  I felt the same way mellowinman (0+ / 0-)

          first hide rate I've ever given I think.

          •  "first hide rate I've ever given I think" (0+ / 0-)

            Why, for telling the truth that Obama could lose or saying the race is not ties..which statistically it is..

            OH, and since the debate I have given to the Prez and Democrat candidates on three occasions. What have you done?

        •  Do me a favor and (0+ / 0-)

          save your advice for the president.

          You know the one who faced a serial liar and allowed him to tell one after the other and never called him on any of them.

          This could have been over if our president had prepared and fought like a guy who wants to keep his job but instead it is now a contest.

  •   Ppl r reading way too much into Nate's comment (0+ / 0-)

    I think Nate is saying it's too early to predict a Romney bounce

  •  Er, no. Nate Silver is not betting on Romney. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    itskevin, koNko, Stroszek

    Nate's run a business predicting baseball performance/odds primarily in the major leagues. In his former business  talk about betting and odds were the lingua franca and he still frequently uses it

    Nate info

  •  Intrade Advice (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    It's for betting. That simple. Could have been worded better. Now chill out. Or better yet, make some money at Mitt's expense, and then celebrate Obama's win on November 6th.

  •  He's doing this to screw with Republicans. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Ha ha ha.  :)

  •  this totally misreads poblano (aka nate silver) (5+ / 0-)

    he's fascinated by betting and statistics, and regularly refers to the intrade markets on the candidates in his discussion on various ways to forecast elections. here i suspect he's referring to the gap between the betting odds vs. the likelihood of romney actually winning.

  •  The bounce. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    15.1% is not a great place to be. Now suppose he moved to 20%. Still not a great place to be.

    This is a race. It was supposed to be Romney's to lose but that was then and this is now and it's Obama's race to lose.

    So Obama has come out fighting and so have his supporters.

    If that keeps happening, I'm pretty sure he's going to win.

    What about my Daughter's future?

    by koNko on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:45:31 PM PDT

  •  Nate frequently overwrites and compensates (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    roycej, Nice Ogre

    Each day, I like many look at the guy's data and the composites all reasonably show strong and comfortable leads for Obama. Then I try reading through the dense columns he writes and many times each week he just flat out hedges and says things like "big bounce likely for Romney" and "the polls are going to tighten" and "the challenger usually closes well" - yet, his numbers never change much. Hard to believe the numbers often match the points in his columns.

    I think he feels guilty sometimes posting huge odds favoring Obama and has to play the false equivalence card.

    Additionally, I look at his numbers every day and I ask - can the ground game pull this off? It doesn't take long to have big confidence that Obama's ground game can and will pull off the victory.

    •  Totally agree about Nate. nt (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      The Mighty Favog
    •  He talks like a statistician . . . (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Nice Ogre

      which means that you hedge and always permit for uncertainty.

      He actually quantifies the expected bounce in his column, and I believe he also states that he doesn't expect to see the bounce -- provided there is one -- until early next week.

      I think he's calling it as he sees it, but he's dealing with events that are still subject to change before election day.  The closer things get to election day, the more insurmountable a 3 to 5 point lead is likely to be.  But if the race tightens to a 1 to 2 point race or a tie over the next few weeks, then its a much harder call.  He has no way of knowing in advance what the numbers will be the week before the vote.  All that he can give is a best guess.

      He's hedging because there are still events that could move the numbers Romney's way.  Obama has had a significant lead, but it isn't insurmountable.

      •  no he doesn't (0+ / 0-)

        He talks like a bettor.

        Nate's "methodology" is not in any way a well-designed statistical approach. He introduces numerous biases and unsupported weightings of the data.

        He's as much a statistician as Newt Gingrich is an intellectual, or Paul Ryan is an economist. They play those roles on TV, and Nate plays the role at the NYT.

        (I speak as an epidemiologist with significant coursework in, and familiarity with, biostatistics.)

        Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration. -- K.Marx A.Lincoln

        by N in Seattle on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 10:37:49 PM PDT

        [ Parent ]

        •  Specifically . . . (0+ / 0-)

          which biases and weighting do you take issue with?

          •  such as... (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            • Adjusting for state demographic factors that weren't part of the sample selection scheme. That introduces what's known as the ecological fallacy.
            • Weighting polls according to chronology (more recent have higher weights) but not by sample size.
            • Introducing factors without adequately describing them.

            An analytic approach based on recognized statistical methodologies is taken by Darryl at In an FAQ, he lays out his methodology in detail.

            Darryl's predicted electoral vote result in 2008 was off by 1 (he forgot about the NE and ME rules for individual CDs). He did get two states wrong, but IN and MO both have 11 EV.

            Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration. -- K.Marx A.Lincoln

            by N in Seattle on Sat Oct 06, 2012 at 03:49:18 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

    •  Nate's commentary is about history... (0+ / 0-)

      the level of inertia in publiuc opinion in this election is, historically, high (i.e. expect a lesser response to just about everything).

  •  GOD! (0+ / 0-)

    This sucks!  

    Obama could have ended this campaign!  

    Is there any room for Obama moderates around here?

    by Bagger on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 07:52:30 PM PDT

  •  If Romney has 15.1%, then Obama has 84.9% (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    NotGeorgeWill, Fury

    chance of winning. What he doesn't know is if this is a true bounce or not. CHILL OUT!

  •  You should have a poll! (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    My vote would be "bet on Romney to receive a significant bounce from the debate, which is muted by the economic numbers" as opposed to "Nate's model now favors Mitt Romney".

    Nate has already stated that he expects Romney to receive a larger than usual bump from the first debate in the range of two to three points.  His model, however, points to a 4 to 5 point race pre-debate, so a two to three point bounce would help Romney close the gap significantly, but it would not give him the lead.

    The most recent economic report has the effect of giving Romney about a 1 point advantage relative to Obama purely on economic measures (this is by Nate's own account and based on his own model -- Obama was overperforming the economic measures)  However, better economic fundamentals, as Nate indicated today, would actually shift that measure in Obama's direction.

    So Romney may get his 2-3 point bump.  But instead of measuring up against Obama with a 4 to 5 point lead, the economic fundamentals are now pointing to a lead for Obama that, pre-debate, was probably closer to 5 or 6.  

    In other words, Romney closes the gap, but rather than being 1 point back or near parity, he's two to three points back.

  •  chill (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    jayden, Fury

    Mr. 15.1% is not the betting favorite to win.

    "Do what you can with what you have where you are." - Teddy Roosevelt

    by Andrew C White on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 08:31:39 PM PDT

  •  Just a series of polls from Republican leading (0+ / 0-)


    Currently at 11 PM 10/5/12 Est, the odds for the election are 84.9% Obama and 15.1% Mitt (with Nate's model last updated 6:10 10/5).  

    Recently, four Republican leading firms have done polls: Ras., Gravis, We Ask America and McLaughlin in Ohio, Florida, Virgina and Colorado. Notably, Ras. and We Ask America are both automated polling firms which have polling artifacts which can produce Republican leans.  Nate's model appears to have incorporated Ras' new polls but not all of We Ask America or Gravis.

    Ras seems to be showing around +4 swing (from prior polling) with We Ask America showing +6.  

    So it would be normal to expect to see Obama's odds to drop somewhat and Mitt's to increase as the new data is incorporated.

  •  Read the Article........ (0+ / 0-)

    Good grief..He in no way is saying he bets Romney would win the election...He is talking about whether the debate bump for Romney will exist and whether it will prevail over any Obama bump from the jobs numbers. He is saying he bets Romney gets a bump. He is also saying it is hard at this point it is hard to predict how large the bump will be...BUT settle down, even IF there is a bump, it still needs to be factored into the existing massive predictive lead by Obama.  

    Obama can't continue sitting on a lead but this is not going to dramatically shift the overall numbers but could be a first step in momentum shift.

  •  If Romney has a 15.1% chance and the total (0+ / 0-)

    chance is 100%  -- then that means President Obama has an 84.9% chance, right? He's saying Romney moved 2.2% points, which means nothing since he was so far down to begin with.

    "Southern nights have you ever felt a southern night?" Allen Toussaint ~~Remember the Gulf of Mexico~~

    by rubyr on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 09:28:17 PM PDT

  •  I like Nate Silver but (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Allan J Lichtman is the man to pay attention base on his Keys forecasting model predictions which he as Obama winning.

    By Allan J. Lichtman

    In two previous columns, in March 2010 and June 2011, I informed Gazette readers of my early prediction for the presidential election based on the Keys to the White House. Nothing has changed in this final prediction. The Keys still point strongly to an Obama victory next month.

    The Keys to the White House are a historically based system for predicting the results of American presidential elections. I first developed the Keys system in 1981, in collaboration with Volodia Keilis-Borok, a world-renowned authority on the mathematics of prediction models.

    Retrospectively, the Keys accurately account for the results of every presidential election from 1860 through 1980. Prospectively, the keys have predicted well ahead of time the popular-vote winners of all seven presidential elections from 1984 through 2008. The Keys first predicted a Democratic victory for 2008 in an article in the journal Foresight in February 2006.

    The Keys model gives specificity to the idea that it is governance, not campaigning, that counts in these elections. It tracks the big picture of how well the party holding the White House has governed the country and does not shift with events of the campaign.

    The Keys to the White House consist of 13 true-false questions that gauge the performance and strength of the incumbent presidential party. Each Key is phrased so that an answer of true always favors re-election of the incumbent party. When five or fewer keys are false or turned against the party holding the White House, that party wins another term in office. When six or more are false, the challenging party wins. Obama is a predicted winner with 10 Keys in his favor and only three turned against him.

    The following 10 Keys currently favor the incumbent Democratic Party.

    -- The lack of any likely nomination challenge to President Obama secures Incumbent Party Contest Key 2.

    -- Obama’s nomination locks up Incumbency Key 3.

    -- The absence of any likely third-party challenger with a chance of winning at least 5 percent of the vote gives the Democrats the Third-Party Key 4.

    -- The economy is in a slow recovery, not a recession, gaining Short-term Economy Key 5.

    -- The enactment of the health care bill secures Policy Change Key 7.

    -- The absence of sustained, violent upheavals like those of the 1960s avoids loss of the Social Unrest Key 8.

    -- The lack of a major presidential scandal averts the loss of Scandal Key 9.

    -- The president has not suffered a major foreign policy or military failure comparable to Pearl Harbor or losing the Vietnam War, keeping Foreign/Military Failure Key 10 in line.

    -- The elimination of Osama bin Laden secures Foreign/Military Success Key 11.

    -- Mitt Romney’s lack of charisma keeps Democrats from losing the Challenger Charisma/Hero Key 13.

    The following three keys now count against the incumbent party:

    -- The party’s losses in the 2010 midterm elections cost it Mandate Key 1.

    -- The weak economy during Obama’s term results in the loss of Long-Term Economy Key 6.

    -- Obama has not quite regained the magic of his 2008 campaign and falls just short of gaining the Incumbent Charisma/Hero Key 12.

    As a national system, the Keys predict the popular vote, not state-by-state results for the Electoral College. The conventional wisdom, of course, asserts that the Electoral College vote will be decided by a handful of so-called “battleground states.”

    In fact, it is the national popular vote that typically determines the outcomes in the battleground states. Since the turn of the 20th century, the national popular vote has coincided with the Electoral College vote in 27 of 28 elections (96 percent). The only exception occurred in the highly contested and controversial election of 2000.

    Focused spending and organizing in battleground states also yields minimal results, according to a study by political scientist Alan Abramowitz. He found that in 2008, Obama’s huge organizational and spending advantage in 15 battleground states netted him an average increase of just 0.8 percent of the vote above projections based on 2004 election patterns and Obama’s surge in the national popular vote.

    As goes the popular vote this year, history indicates that the electoral vote will follow, giving Obama another four years in office. Wisely, the president should use the remainder of the campaign to spell out a clear second-term vision and build a mandate for governing after the election.

    The 13 Keys to the White House: Standings, October 2012:

    Key 1 (Party Mandate): After the midterm elections, the incumbent party holds more seats in the U.S. House of Representatives than it did after the previous midterm elections. (False)

    Key 2 (Contest): There is no serious contest for the incumbent party nomination. (True)

    Key 3 (Incumbency): The incumbent-party candidate is the sitting president. (True)

    Key 4 (Third Party): There is no significant third-party or independent campaign. (True)

    Key 5 (Short-Term Economy): The economy is not in recession during the election campaign. (True)

    Key 6 (Long-Term Economy): Real per-capita economic growth during the term equals or exceeds mean growth during the previous two terms. (False)

    Key 7 (Policy Change): The incumbent administration effects major changes in national policy. (True)

    Key 8 (Social Unrest): There is no sustained social unrest during the term. (True)

    Key 9 (Scandal): The incumbent administration is untainted by major scandal. (True)

    Key 10 (Foreign/Military Failure): The incumbent administration suffers no major failure in foreign or military affairs. (True)

    Key 11 (Foreign/Military Success): The incumbent administration achieves a major success in foreign or military affairs. (True)

    Key 12 (Incumbent Charisma): The incumbent-party candidate is charismatic or a national hero. (False)

    Key 13 (Challenger Charisma): The challenging-party candidate is not charismatic or a national hero. (True)

    10 Keys true, 3 Keys false

    Prediction: Incumbent Democrats win in 2012

  •  Others have already said it repeatedly... (0+ / 0-)

    ...yet the misinterpretation persists. Nate is not going to make a claim about the state of the race that both defies the model and defies historical precedent. Put more simply, the very limited post-debate polling data could never be given enough weight to swing the race that much, and that much of a swing would be unrealistic given the electorate's response to past debates (setting aside the fact that such swings are less likely this year).

    He's stating that the odds will trend towards Romney from the current model, and that the model essentially resists the change imposed by the debate results.

    He then hedges, based on the economic news.

    To suggest that Nate thinks an election tomorrow would give Romney favorable odds is silly... the data do not and could not support that under the circumstances.

  •  There's really no need to freak out (0+ / 0-)

    and wring hands. I imagine that at this point 8 years ago, Republicans were wringing their hands when Kerry absolutely REAMED Bush in Debate #1. And the Bush-Kerry race was a lot closer pre-debate than Obama-Romney is.

    "Valerie, why am I getting all these emails calling me a classless boor?"

    by TLS66 on Fri Oct 05, 2012 at 10:12:17 PM PDT

  •  Better than 15% (0+ / 0-)

    I think all he's saying is that in his personal opinion Romney has a better than 15% shot right now .... that his model is lagging ...

    So he's just saying that he thinks the odds are better than 15%... he doesn't say exactly what he thinks they are... but... 20% is better than 15%.

  •  he means you'll get good odds now (0+ / 0-)

    that the odds may drop for romney, not that he thinks romney will win.

  •  Would love to hear Nate's take on baseball now (0+ / 0-)

    Folks here seem to be misreading Nate's analysis - or some folks at least. Nate bets on futures and spreads, so he obviously doesn't think Romney is actually a good bet to win outright now.  That said, I wonder what he thinks of the travesty that is the 1-game baseball wildcard. Statisticians like Nate make their living by examining patterns over time. A 1-game playoff defies all statistical models, especially as bad umpire calls can be exaggerated. I'm more interested in what he has to say about that than I am hearing him speculate on the basis of a handful of partisan one-day polls.

  •  omg everybody calm down (0+ / 0-)

    First this is marathon not a sprint. meaning there ispacing to out the race. it's rare particularly with the polarization lately that someone just stays out front from the beginning. at least with a large lead. and that is what nate is saying. that if he were to bet on his projections now the numbers are probably high and you should take the under. I need is a numbers guy and I trust his numbers. he is also not a wordsmith  so...
     and the race will always tighten and go up and down to some extent. does anybody remember even 2004? after the first debate, with or Kerry cleaned Bush's clock and we were on our way. this will be a close race. if Obama had done better at the debate, then we wouldn't be talking Chicago has always known it, and everybody here should know it. now, but at some point the race would have gotten tighter. Chicago knows it and everyone here should know it. this still the job numbers to bake in, new ads,more debates, I more jobs repotr, and more gaffes. the numbers for me to watch are in specific States and the Presidents favorables and top line numbers.

  •  I think he's talking about what would be the ... (0+ / 0-)

    best bet on something like Intrade.  You get $10 if you pick the winner.  If the people betting on that proposition think Candidate A has an 85% chance of winning and Candidate B has a 15% chance, then you'd have to pay $8.50 to get $10 if Candidate A wins, but only $1.50 to get $10 if Candidate B wins.

    Let's say those are the odds, but you think Candidate A actually has a 60% chance of winning and Candidate  has a 40% chance.  Clearly, under those circumstances, you'd be better off betting on Candidate B, even though you'd probably lose.  But since the payoff would be $10 on a $1.50 bet if you won, vs. the same $10 on an $8.50 bet if you had bet on Candidate A, you're better off betting on Candidate B.

    I think all Nate is saying is that if he were going to bet, and he was offered a $10 payoff on a $1.50 bet if Romney won, he'd bet on Romney, because he thinks he's actually got a better than 15% chance of winning.  Since I never did share the view of most around here that this was all over but the counting, I'm not unduly shaken.

    Bin Laden is dead. GM and Chrysler are alive.

    by leevank on Sat Oct 06, 2012 at 07:40:21 AM PDT

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