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Remember that time our candidate won a half million more votes for President and was never inaugurated? Bad times. But for Katrino Trinko (real name!) at NRO those were great times and she has advice on how future GOP candidates can win with even bigger popular vote deficits.

No need for the GOP to reconsider its platform. No need to expand the party beyond old, white and heterosexual voters.

Just change the rules. Romney would have won, she writes, if GOP governors had said, as she does, that "it’s time to overhaul the system itself."

Imagination land lies below the puffy orange cloud.


I prefer:

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Tue Dec 04, 2012 at 06:46 AM PST

Obama in History

by tremayne

Here's a Twitter exchange from last night between Nate Silver and David Wasserman:

And the response:

When those New York votes are added President Obama will have reached or exceeded 51.0 percent of all votes cast in two Presidential elections. He will join a club currently occupied by only 8 other Presidents.

Details below.


Will Barack Obama one day get his own coin or bill?

66%58 votes
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Ten days after the election and votes are still being tallied in California and other states. The morning after the election AP said President won by 1.3 million votes nationally, about a two percent margin. The electoral vote was then 303-206 with Florida still undeclared.

We know the electoral college ended up a cushy 332-206, a 126 vote margin. Now we have an idea what the scope of the popular vote margin will be. After updates this afternoon, the race stands and at:

Obama   50.7%
Romney  47.7%

It's a 3% margin and still growing. What about raw votes? Right now:

Obama  63.2 million
Romney 59.5 million

The margin is 3.7 million and could expand to nearly 4 before it's over. Now, I've heard some Republicans say the 2012 race was closer than 2004. Silly, but math is not always their strong suit. Here are the 2004 margins for George Bush over John Kerry :

Bush + 2.4%
Bush +3 million votes
Bush +35 electoral college

And, of course, Bush had only Ohio as his margin of victory. Obama carried every contested state except NC (and the fact Republicans spent $43 million to hold NC tells you something as well).

Historically speaking, this will not be regarded as a particularly close race. Then again, if the media goes on and on for months saying "tie" then people might still think so a week after the election:

Ha, ha. Whatever.


Tue Nov 13, 2012 at 10:43 AM PST

Racism, Secession & Some Math

by tremayne

You probably heard about the racist Twitter storm following the President's reelection last week. But here's an interesting project which maps the Tweets by location. You can check out the interactive map here. But to summarize, here are the states with the highest number of racist Tweets (adjusted for population):

Alabama     8.1
Mississippi  7.4
Georgia      3.6
N.Dakota    3.5
Utah          3.5
Louisiana    3.3
Tennessee  3.1
Missouri     3.0

I also happened to look at the groups on that are running petitions for succession. About 20 states are represented. I divided the state's population by the number of signers. Here are top 10 results:

N.Dakota:   1 signer for every 77 people in the state
Montana:    1 signer for every 102
Louisiana:   1 signer for every 160
Arkansas:   1 signer for every 194
Alabama:    1 signer for every 235
Mississippi: 1 signer for every 236
Missouri:    1 signer for every 262
Tennessee: 1 signer for every 320
Georgia:     1 signer for every 323
Kentucky:   1 signer for every 349

You'll notice the overlap in the lists. All of the top 8 racist Tweeting states are among the top secessionist states except Utah because no one had started a petition last I checked. Of course Texas is getting all the attention because that state's petition has the most signatures. But when you adjust for population, it's around 11th. There are also a lot of racist Tweets from there (mostly centered around Houston) but Texas as a whole, considering the population, is not as racist as other locales.


Okay, does that sound a little harsh? Consider that out of 23 polling firms measured by Nate Silver and having at least 5 polls in the final 3 weeks of the campaign, they came in as the 23rd most accurate. And, to be fair to the 22nd, there was a quite a bit of gap between them. How bad? An average error of 7.2 points toward Romney! Other polling firms had high average errors but they sometimes erred in the both directions. Not Gallup.

Further, Gallup has been sucking for a long time. Here's Nate:

It was one of the best-known polling firms, however, that had among the worst results. In late October, Gallup consistently showed Mr. Romney ahead by about six percentage points among likely voters, far different from the average of other surveys. Gallup’s final poll of the election, which had Mr. Romney up by one point, was slightly better, but still identified the wrong winner in the election. Gallup has now had three poor elections in a row. In 2008, their polls overestimated Mr. Obama’s performance, while in 2010, they overestimated how well Republicans would do in the race for the United States House.
Three elections in a row is no fluke. And since the best predictor of the future is the past, and since Gallup has shown no inclination to stop sucking, I think we must assume they will continue to suck. Really, anything short of an apology for completely ridiculous polling should lead to some kind of banishment from the public dialogue.

Sun Nov 04, 2012 at 05:13 PM PST

Final PPP Ohio Poll is Out

by tremayne

And here is the news:

I'm going to go ahead and give the remaining 1 percent of voters to Mitt Romney. Because I'm feeling charitable and because, you know, undecideds ALWAYS go for the challenger. Right?

Didn't think so.



I will miss polling news

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[Hey, I agree with Kos, Mitt Romney was headed for a big loss before the super storm ever arrived. If you look at Nate Silver's charts the big turnaround began (abruptly) with the VP debate. But Republicans are blaming Sandy and the media seems ready to go along. Why fight it?]

Dear Republican friends,

Your man Mitt Romney had all the momentum and looked ready to win the White House. It was practically inevitable. You were right about all those skewed polls. Most of those polling firms lean Democratic because their lead researchers went to college and were indoctrinated there. But your internal numbers were correct, victory was at hand.

And the Obama campaign really was on the ropes and in disarray. Hopping around from state to state with no apparent plan. And the independents were flocking to your side. Republican early voting numbers were miles ahead of 2008 and your efforts to make voting harder appeared to be paying real dividends. And then what happened?

God. God happened.

God saw the President on the verge of defeat and couldn't let that happen. He conjured a giant storm, a super storm if you will, and directed it to a very specific region of the country. A place where two leaders, highly thought of by independents and undecided voters, resided. When the storm crashed upon the shore, God's President took action and won the praise of the two leaders and thus secured his place in history as the first black president to serve two terms (and also one term).

God didn't want Mitt Romney to be president. It's something you're just going to have to get used to. Consider it a test of faith, if that makes you feel better.

Best Wishes.



Fri Nov 02, 2012 at 01:23 PM PDT

New Polls. Romney Broken.

by tremayne

A dam broke. All polls released today. Late deciders for Obama:

CNN                 50-47 Obama
Rasmussen       49-49 tie  (equals 2-3 point win in 538 adjustment)
WeAskAmerica  50.2-45.8 Obama
Reuters/Ipsos   47-45 Obama

Reuters/Ipsos    48-45 Obama
WeAskAmerica   48.5-47.6 Obama

DenPost/SUSA   47-45 Obama
PPP                   50-46 Obama
Reuters/Ipsos   46-46

New Hampshire
NE College        50-44  Obama


Rasmussen       52-47 Obama (Ras!)
PPP                  52-46 Obama (#notaswingstate)

PPP                  53-44 Obama (#alsonotaswingstate)

Gravis              49-45 Obama (leans R by 4-5 pts usually)

Reuters/Ipsos    48-46 Obama

PPP Twitter
TPM Polltracker


This will move 538 forecast to:

11%24 votes
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The super storm battered the house and flooded the town and, it turns out, ruptured the space-time continuum. Multiple universes were created and in the one I now reside some bizarre things have happened.

When the power came back on I flipped on the TV to see this on Fox:

After I got up off the floor I flipped the channel to see this on ABC:

Next, I saw this report:

What the ? Where am I? The jillionaire Bloomberg  endorsed Obama? And for climate change?

When I step into the voting booth, I think about the world I want to leave my two daughters, and the values that are required to guide us there. The two parties’ nominees for president offer different visions of where they want to lead America.

One believes a woman’s right to choose should be protected for future generations; one does not. That difference, given the likelihood of Supreme Court vacancies, weighs heavily on my decision.

One recognizes marriage equality as consistent with America’s march of freedom; one does not. I want our president to be on the right side of history.

One sees climate change as an urgent problem that threatens our planet; one does not. I want our president to place scientific evidence and risk management above electoral politics.

Presidents Bill Clinton and Ronald Reagan both found success while their parties were out of power in Congress -- and President Obama can, too. If he listens to people on both sides of the aisle, and builds the trust of moderates, he can fulfill the hope he inspired four years ago and lead our country toward a better future for my children and yours. And that’s why I will be voting for him.
Gah! I must have died in the storm and this is some kind of bizarro heaven. What's next, an endorsement from The Economist?  

No, you're kidding!:

As a result, this election offers American voters an unedifying choice. Many of The Economist’s readers, especially those who run businesses in America, may well conclude that nothing could be worse than another four years of Mr Obama. We beg to differ. For all his businesslike intentions, Mr Romney has an economic plan that works only if you don’t believe most of what he says. That is not a convincing pitch for a chief executive. And for all his shortcomings, Mr Obama has dragged America’s economy back from the brink of disaster, and has made a decent fist of foreign policy. So this newspaper would stick with the devil it knows, and re-elect him.
Apparently this is the world I now inhabit. I wonder what's going on in the world I used to know?

Public Policy Polling released three polls this evening, all of them bearing good news for the home team. But it's even better than that. In PPP's last 8 swing state polls, in 8 different states, Team Obama has gained over their previous poll.

Same state, same polling organization, same polling methodology, 8 straight increases. Those increases, by the way, range from 1 to 4 points and an average of 2.4 points. In any one case you could explain the increase by random fluctuation. But 8 straight in 8 different states? What are the odds?

If you had a coin with Obama on one side and Romney on the other, what are the odds it would come up Obama 8 straight times? That would be 0.5 to power of 8 or less than 1%. To be exact, 0.39%.  

It's not random. Here are the details:

Oct. 28, Ohio      51-47 Obama (from 49-48 a week prior)
Oct. 28, Florida   49-48 Obama (from 48-49 Romney two weeks ago)
Oct. 28, NH        49-47 Obama (from 48-49 Romney last week)
Oct. 25, CO        51-47 Obama (from 50-47 last week)
Oct. 25, NC        48-48 Obama (from 47-49 a week and a half prior)
Oct. 25, IA         49-47 Obama (from 49-48 a week ago)
Oct. 25, WI        51-45 Obama (from 49-47 three weeks prior)
Oct. 25, VA        51-46 Obama (from 49-47 last week)

Pretty stunning really.

Now, why do the swing states look good for Obama but the national polls are tied at best? For me, it's not a mystery. The swing states have been inundated with TV ads for 6 months and the other states have not. Absent any TV ads anywhere, Romney would be winning due to a sluggish economy mostly. But the Obama ads, especially in the summer have been devastating to Romney. He was simply disqualified in a lot of swing states voters' minds before the conventions and debates ever started. If the Obama folks blanketed those ads coast to coast you'd be seeing a national poll lead. But, as you would expect from Obama/Axelrod/Messina and company, resources are being targeted exactly where they are needed and not where they would be superfluous or inefficient.


That guy is at it again. He has released his official UNSKEWED projection of the electoral college. It's not pretty. I wish I could tell you he was wrong but he wrote this:

This projection is expected to be spot-on accurate for predicting the outcome in all 50 states and the District of Columbia and close to the actual popular vote.
So that settles that I suppose.

Sorry I am delaying revealing the forecast but it's pretty bad and I'd like to break the news slowly and gently.

First, Obama is going to lose Ohio. And by lose I mean an 8-point butt kicking which that guy attributes to Romney's "great ground game" advantage. I thought OFA was pretty organized there but those 6 Romney offices must really be awesome.

Also, we're going to lose some all the other swing states. We lose Colorado by 9, Florida by 9, Iowa by 8, New Hampshire by 8, New Mexico by 7 and don't even get me started on Virginia and North Carolina.

Oh Virginia, what the hell is happening there? We're going to lose by 16! I thought Virginia was for lovers. And FU North Carolina! Romney by 20 ??!?!? Really? How could you!

Oh and the damage is not just limited to swing states. We're going to lose Connecticut by 4. I don't even know where Connecticut is and nobody told me to pay any attention to it! Fortunately we do squeak out Maine by decimal points so that's good. Thanks Maine! (Correction: we manage to hold CT by 4...whew!).

We lose Michigan by 3. Didn't see that coming either! And Minnesota, we somehow manage to lose it too. And that state McCain moved his whole campaign to 4 years ago, you know, Pennsylvania? We lose it by 6 this time!

And the coup de grâce? OREGON! Bam! Can you believe it? We lose Oregon by 6!!!

The final red-blue map is below. It's ugly I know. Don't say I didn't warn you.


That Unskewed Guy is

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I decided to check in today on Dean Chambers, the Unskewed Polls guy. As usual, Romney is winning easily according his polling aggregation. Actually, running away with the election would be more accurate. But the real news? Every single pollster in his current average is biased against Republicans. Every. Single. One. And that includes one poll (NY Times/CBS) for which he calculates a skew of zero. And it also includes Gallup, for which he shows a slight Democratic lean, and Rasmussen, which is 3 times more liberally biased.

More below the curlicue of bias.

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