Western Illinois University has held 3 mock presidential elections since 1975, and each election they’ve accurately predicted the winner, even though Jimmy Carter and Barack Obama were surprises.
In other years, the students chose the correct Party (without the full mock election). And in 2011, it seems they predicted the Romney/Ryan ticket long before it was expected.
This is a college exercise meant to teach students about the election process. It is not a scientific poll.
From the Bern Report,
History of the Mock Presidential Election: This simulation always takes place the year before the presidential election year, and three months before the actual Iowa caucuses. The genesis of this mock presidential election began at the University of Iowa in 1975 with two political science doctoral students, John Hemingway and Rick Hardy. In that year, students selected Jimmy Carter over Gerald Ford—long before anyone really knew of Jimmy Carter. In the years that followed, Rick Hardy expanded the format and engaged thousands of students at the University of Missouri-Columbia where students registered a perfect record of selecting the subsequent winning presidential party. In 2007 and 2011, Hardy and Hemingway teamed up again to conduct a massive campus-wide simulation at Western Illinois University. In 2007, Western students selected Barack Obama as president at a time when no one thought he could win! And, in 2011, students narrowly re-elected President Obama over the GOP ticket of Mitt Romney and Paul Ryan!
It’s an extremely involved and complicated process, complete with primaries and caucuses and a general election.
They just concluded their 2016 Mock Election and, wouldn’t you know it —
Bernie Sanders won in a landslide.
They had him winning the primary against Hillary Clinton by an almost 2 to 1 margin, and he wiped the floor with the Republican nominee, establishment Jeb! Can Fix It Bush, in the general. They predict Bernie to win next November by an almost 4 to 1 margin.
It seems impossible. They have him taking states you’d think fantastical now and winning by an implausibly large margin.
But it looks to me that the ridiculousness of his success is another indicator of a larger trend.
Bernie’s awakening a fire. His message is rippling throughout the country. Maybe the states are wrong, and the margin’s wrong, but that doesn’t mean the outcome is. He doesn’t have to get four times as many electoral votes as the G.O.P. nominee to win.
Maybe the extreme predictions project the trajectory of excitement that’s been spreading for Bernie’s campaign. There is a fever in this country, a desire on both sides for real change, and it’s been causing the little guy, the long shot, to gain on the establishment’s candidate. People just don’t know his name like they know Hillary Clinton’s.
Yet he’s got the most donations than anyone at this point in U.S. history. That’s huge. It means the citizens are standing up to fund him, propelling him forward in an election dominated by Super Pacs and big money. He has a real grassroots campaign, with a growing following that’s passionate and active on social media and will go out to spread the word/earn people’s votes. There are polls of him going head to head with conservative candidates, like the one I linked to below, and winning. He’s been “making friends”, in the head’s own words, by speaking at conservative Liberty University, talking about how the partisanship can stop, how we can unite.
Bernie could do this. We’re the only things stopping him. He’s a politician trying to fix all our problems before we are ready to let someone fix them. We’re scared to vote for him, confused about what’s possible.
But if we all fought for him, he would win. You and me, that’s what it takes. He’s been fighting his whole life for us, before anyone else was, saying what no one else was, — we need to fight for him, for us, now.
Don’t kill Tinker Bell.
This mock election is a little tiny, fun thing to look at, an exercise at one college. But what if we could make that tiny little thing real? It truly is up to us.
And along with the excitement this underdog is generating, it’s hard not to get frustrated with the media for being so undeniably pro-Hillary, long-shot Bernie — the New York Times is currently running an article called “Hillary in History,” all about how monumental electing a female president would be (amping on to Hillary’s usage of her gender for political gain), and the Des Moines Register one about how Hillary is “inevitable,” and the US News one about how Bernie (and O’Malley) were upping their “attack” at the Democratic Forum while Hillary was cool, almost acting “like neither men were there.”
And the media’s also been totally silent on the multiple polls that show Sanders beating Trump in the general.
“These polls suggest that a Sanders victory is highly plausible, and the Rupert Murdoch-owned Wall Street Journal is hardly a liberal publication, but as Budowsky brilliantly puts it: ‘When America’s premier journal of capitalism releases a poll showing the democratic socialist candidate defeating by a landslide margin the capitalist who dominates television news, methinks it is liberals, not conservatives, who have the better argument against bias!’”
Also, here’s one other article talking about Hillary’s hypocritical Sanders smearing.
They’re trying to crush his campaign.
Help the flame bern.
Do it for the kids.
Monday, Nov 9, 2015 · 7:34:06 PM +00:00 · HumanOfEarth
Didn’t realize that this was going to blow up! It was a quick diary about something interesting. Did not mean to mislead anyone! The title (now changed) is because of what I read on the BernReport that this was an incredibly accurate, never-been-wrong mock election. It’s not 100% accurate in a scientific sense, just exciting for Bernie supporters desperate for a Dem candidate who’s really on the side of the people. And the map was for an interesting visual, not meant to be taken so seriously.
Far more important to me is the stuff I included about the excitement for Bernie’s campaign, Sanders beating Donald Trump in the (actually scientific) polls, and the media bias towards Hillary Clinton, against Bernie.
But here’s hoping we make that map far less absurd come March/next November!