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Wednesday, October 31, 2012

OTP November 2012 - Moneypoll! The Pundits vs. The Election-Data Nerds

Come next Tuesday night, we’ll get a resolution (let’s hope) to a great ongoing battle of 2012: not just the Presidential election between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, but the one between the pundits trying to analyze that race with their guts and a new breed of statistics gurus trying to forecast it with data.

In Election 2012 as seen by the pundits–political journalists on the trail, commentators in cable-news studios–the campaign is a jump ball. There’s a slight lead for Mitt Romney in national polls and slight leads for Barack Obama in swing-state polls, and no good way of predicting next Tuesday’s outcome beyond flipping a coin. ...

Bonus link: Esquire - The Enemies of Nate Silver

Joe Kehoskie Posted: October 31, 2012 at 11:42 PM | 11298 comment(s) Login to Bookmark
  Tags: mr president, off-topic, politics, sabermetrics, usa

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   1201. Non-Youkilidian Geometry Posted: November 03, 2012 at 07:30 PM (#4292075)
Holy christ, that is either sheer stupidity or just big time trolling.

All the available evidence suggests he's capable of both simultaneously.
   1202. Shredder Posted: November 03, 2012 at 07:35 PM (#4292079)
Any registered voter who answers the phone and declines to vote would count as a data point
A data point that doesn't show up in the poll numbers that are released. That's why you see poll numbers for each candidate and undecideds. Notice how they don't say "Obama 28%, Romney 25%, undecided 7%, and 40% declined to participate". Or do you really think every single person they call is included in the final numbers released? You really think no one, or only a tiny minority decline to participate?
   1203. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 07:36 PM (#4292080)
It's not a Gallup poll. It's census data from the Current Population Survey.

You linked to a Gallup study and a New York Times study. Regardless, why would you base a model on what people say they will do rather than what you know they have done?

I'm saying that the census found that a lot of people didn't realize they were registered to vote, and that's roughly what the census has found each of the past four elections (see Table 1). It's not an outlier result.

How do you know this? You're making an assumption based on a statistical anomaly. That's it. The idea that almost a quarter of Americans don't know they're registered to vote is absurd, especially with today's GOTV efforts.

***
Wait, this is his reason for thinking LV screens are wrong? Holy christ, that is either sheer stupidity or just big time trolling.

Again, polling centers call a bunch of people but only about 8% of them actually take the poll. People who take the poll are more inclined to vote than people who do not take the poll thus as we get closer to the election the % of LV gets higher and higher.

It's funny how McCoy made a big show out of putting me on "ignore" but still obsessively replies to every comment of mine that's quoted by someone else. Very strange.
   1204. tshipman Posted: November 03, 2012 at 07:38 PM (#4292086)
No his reason for thinking LV screens are wrong starts and ends with the fact that his candidate appears to be losing.


Ding, ding, ding!!

Which is what it is, I suppose.
   1205. Danny Posted: November 03, 2012 at 07:44 PM (#4292091)
You linked to a Gallup study and a New York Times study.

No, I never linked to Gallup regarding this. I linked to the same Census report in both 643 and 1186. Please at least pretend that you're interested in the truth.
Regardless, why would you base a model on what people say they will do rather than what you know they have done?

If you know from census data that 90% of people who say they're registered to vote actually vote, then it's not at all strange to have your model show that 96% of people who say they're registered to vote are likely voters.
   1206. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 07:47 PM (#4292092)
Morris and Barone, meet your competition from the other side of the aisle: Jim Cramer, picking Obama with 440 EVs.
   1207. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 07:49 PM (#4292094)
No, I never linked to Gallup regarding this. I linked to the same Census report in both 643 and 1186. Please at least pretend that you're interested in the truth.

My mistake. I thought it was Gallup. (But what a strange comment. Mistaking Gallup for the Census Bureau means one is uninterested in the truth? The author of the study was essentially irrelevant to the discussion at hand.)

If you know from census data that 90% of people who say they're registered to vote actually vote, then it's not at all strange to have your model show that 96% of people who say they're registered to vote are likely voters.

But you don't know any such thing. All you know is what people said they did, not what they actually did. Do you seriously believe the Census Bureau went through 180,000,000 registered voter records to see who was lying and who was telling the truth?

If you want to keep pretending that almost a quarter of American registered voters don't know they're registered, that's fine, but it's an absurd assumption. Do you seriously believe that a quarter of the voters in Ohio or New Hampshire or Colorado haven't gotten a single call or mailer from a political party or candidate this year offering them an absentee ballot or reminding them to vote?
   1208. Tilden Katz Posted: November 03, 2012 at 07:54 PM (#4292097)
Not that it would change the absurdity of his prediction, but is Jim Cramer an Obama supporter?
   1209. Danny Posted: November 03, 2012 at 07:55 PM (#4292099)
Morris and Barone, meet your competition from the other side of the aisle: Jim Cramer, picking Obama with 440 EVs.

At first I thought "Cool, I didn't know WaPo had their own Nate Silver writing columns about the horse race." Then I realized the guy writes columns about actual horse races.

And the meteorologist should be disqualified for not knowing that Bernie Sanders is an independent.
   1210. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 03, 2012 at 07:56 PM (#4292101)
Yes, only likely voters answer the phone for 90 to 180 days before elections. We can call this the Watson Rule.


Joek apparently believes that caller ID doesn't exist.

Is there a single sentient being with caller ID and voice mail in the year 2012 who actually answers the phone if he or she doesn't recognize the name or number?

---------------------------------------

Morris and Barone, meet your competition from the other side of the aisle: Jim Cramer, picking Obama with 440 EVs.

I see that on that site, the Post's horse racing writer Andy Beyer is one of two pundits picking Romney. The average prediction for the 12 pundits is Obama by 281-257. And Juan Williams is the only one with a split PV (Romney) vs EC (Obama) prediction.
   1211. Danny Posted: November 03, 2012 at 07:57 PM (#4292102)
My mistake. I thought it was Gallup. (But what a strange comment. Mistaking Gallup for the Census Bureau means one is uninterested in the truth? The author of the study was essentially irrelevant to the discussion at hand.)

It shows that you never actually clicked on the link, which explains why none of your arguments attempting to rebut it make any sense.
   1212. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:01 PM (#4292105)
A data point that doesn't show up in the poll numbers that are released. That's why you see poll numbers for each candidate and undecideds. Notice how they don't say "Obama 28%, Romney 25%, undecided 7%, and 40% declined to participate". Or do you really think every single person they call is included in the final numbers released? You really think no one, or only a tiny minority decline to participate?

When did I claim non-participants were included in the topline poll results? I was referring to response rates and this idea that only likely voters answer the phone.
   1213. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:01 PM (#4292106)
At first I thought "Cool, I didn't know WaPo had their own Nate Silver writing columns about the horse race." Then I realized the guy actually writes columns about horse races.

Beyer picks Romney, but the professional poker player picks Obama.
   1214. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:04 PM (#4292107)
Is there a single sentient being with caller ID and voice mail in the year 2012 who actually answers the phone if he or she doesn't recognize the name or number?

Think about this for a second, Andy. You seem to be predicting a 0 percent participation rate for pollsters.
   1215. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:07 PM (#4292109)
It shows that you never actually clicked on the link, which explains why none of your arguments attempting to rebut it make any sense.

Are you sticking to your claim that over 40,000,000 registered voters — nearly a quarter of the U.S. electorate — are unaware that they're registered to vote?

At the risk of enraging Shipman for questioning one of the government bureaucracies he likes so much, it seems illogical to base a model on the Census Bureau's survey data when we have the actual data.
   1216. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:08 PM (#4292110)
. . . only about 8% of them actually take the poll.

That's down from a 35% response rate only a decade or two ago. Reason enough to be more cautious about the results than many here are. If the polls are off this year, looking at the partisan split of non-responders might be a good idea.
   1217. Tilden Katz Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:08 PM (#4292111)
And the meteorologist should be disqualified for not knowing that Bernie Sanders is an independent.


Better than Chris Cillizza predicting we'll have three independents. Maybe he thinks Chris Murphy is actually Joe Lieberman wearing one of those Mission Impossible masks?
   1218. Shredder Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:13 PM (#4292118)
When did I claim non-participants were included in the topline poll results? I was referring to response rates and this idea that only likely voters answer the phone.
Way to change the subject. Very RossCW of you. The argument is not that you think non-participants are included in the top line results. The argument that is being made, which you are conveniently ignoring, is that the average participant in a phone poll is more likely to vote than the average registered voter. That helps explain the discrepancy that still exists in your head for some reason. We all get it. But your guy is losing, so it's not surprising that you'd ignore logical arguments.
   1219. Danny Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:15 PM (#4292120)
At the risk of enraging Shipman for questioning one of the government bureaucracies he likes so much, it seems illogical to base a model on the Census Bureau's survey data when we have the actual data.


Since you keep repeating this nonsense without responding to what I actually write, I'll just repeat what I wrote one more time:

A polling firm found (in one poll) that 96% of people who say they are registered to vote are likely to vote. While it's true that only ~72% of people who are actually registered to vote actually vote, the correct comparison is to the percent of people who say they are registered to vote who actually vote.
   1220. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:17 PM (#4292122)
I see that on that site, the Post's horse racing writer Andy Beyer is one of two pundits picking Romney.

If Beyer says Romney is a "Mortal Lock", Obama partisans should be worried.
   1221. Drew (Primakov, Gungho Iguanas) Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:17 PM (#4292123)
Maybe after this election Joe will write "I punked you all." That's the only way to explain this.
   1222. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:23 PM (#4292126)
The argument that is being made, which you are conveniently ignoring, is that the average participant in a phone poll is more likely to vote than the average registered voter.

When did I dispute this? Never.

The dispute is over the proper regression of RV to LV, or claimed LV to actual voters. And history shows that 96 percent LV is more than a little on the high side.
   1223. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:25 PM (#4292128)
A polling firm found (in one poll) that 96% of people who say they are registered to vote are likely to vote. While it's true that only ~72% of people who are actually registered to vote actually vote, the correct comparison is to the percent of people who say they are registered to vote who actually vote.

Yes, and roughly 95 percent of former high school athletes exaggerate their stats when asked about them decades later. In other words, in a society where voting is seen as somewhat of a civic responsibility, a lot of people who didn't vote are going to be tempted to claim they did (or claim they weren't registered when they knew otherwise).

The idea that a model should be based on what people say they will do (or have done) rather than on what we know they have done is very strange, especially on a site like this one. Since when is survey data better than actual real-world data?
   1224. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:27 PM (#4292129)
If Beyer says Romney is a "Mortal Lock", Obama partisans should be worried.

If a Mortal Lock is 284-254, then I guess that Romney's a veritable Secretariat.

--------------------------------------

. . . only about 8% of them actually take the poll.


That's down from a 35% response rate only a decade or two ago. Reason enough to be more cautious about the results than many here are. If the polls are off this year, looking at the partisan split of non-responders might be a good idea.

And yet nearly all of the big aggregate polling misses we've seen go back further than that.
   1225. Tilden Katz Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:29 PM (#4292133)
If Beyer says Romney is a "Mortal Lock", Obama partisans should be worried.


But what does Smooth Jimmy Apollo say?
   1226. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:34 PM (#4292139)
Is there a single sentient being with caller ID and voice mail in the year 2012 who actually answers the phone if he or she doesn't recognize the name or number?

Think about this for a second, Andy. You seem to be predicting a 0 percent participation rate for pollsters.


Well, obviously I was making a rhetorical point, but in any event I know that there are at least two certain Obama voters out there whom pollsters would never be able to reach. You've got to be Charlie Brown the field goal kicker to think that anyone without a name on the caller ID is anything other than a junk call.
   1227. Random Transaction Generator Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:41 PM (#4292146)
Morris and Barone, meet your competition from the other side of the aisle: Jim Cramer, picking Obama with 440 EVs.


As much as I bag on Morris, I laugh just as hard at Cramer.
   1228. tshipman Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:44 PM (#4292147)
Cramer has to be joking with that prediction. He has Obama winning by 10 points. He'd have to win by 15 to carry Texas, which is what 440 is predicting.
   1229. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:44 PM (#4292148)
Well, obviously I was making a rhetorical point, but in any event I know that there are at least two certain Obama voters out there whom pollsters would never be able to reach.

Maybe if you didn't have your wife slaving away while you're down at the pool hall ...

Speaking of which, it's easier to find a Romney voter in Berkeley than to find a regulation pool table. Maybe that "Bowling Alone" guy is right.
   1230. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:48 PM (#4292151)

And yet nearly all of the big aggregate polling misses we've seen go back further than that.


When pollers had higher response rates they had higher error rates. As polls have gotten more and more sophisticated they have gotten better at measuring what is actually happening. Basically this whole argument about reponse rates and such is just a smokescreen to wishcast away "my guy" isn't winning facts.
   1231. Steve Treder Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:54 PM (#4292154)
Basically this whole argument about reponse rates and such is just a smokescreen to wishcast away "my guy" isn't winning facts.

Not basically. Wholly and entirely.
   1232. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:57 PM (#4292155)
Not basically. Wholly and entirely.

Swing and a miss.

If polling methodology was foolproof, Nate wouldn't have predicted Sen. Ken Buck, Sen. Joe Miller, or Sen. Sharron Angle back in 2010, or underestimated the GOP's House gains by over 20 percent.

The amount of faith people are putting in Obama's 2-point lead in Ohio, 1-point lead in Colorado, and 1.5-point lead in New Hampshire is kind of astonishing.
   1233. tshipman Posted: November 03, 2012 at 08:58 PM (#4292156)
Haven't seen it linked here, but mildly interesting:

Politico Exclusive--Christie was Mitt's first choice for VP

Romney was so close to picking Christie that some top advisers at the campaign’s Boston headquarters believed the governor had been offered the job. The campaign made tentative plans to announce a pick in late July, just before Romney headed off on his overseas trip, starting with a stop at the London Olympics.


Knives in the back sort of stuff, possibly? Just random leaking? Not really sure.
   1234. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:04 PM (#4292157)
Just spoke w/my father in the OC, and he said California has a proposition to outlaw capital punishment. Didn't know that. 400-some guys on death row.

I'm not against the death penalty per se, but currently it's applied so haphazardly I can't get behind it.
   1235. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:04 PM (#4292158)
Basically looks like Romney's camp is trying to capture some of the shine that Christie is getting right now. No way Christie would have accepted the VP pick though. This is old news. It came out before the convention.

Two NE guys on the ticket? Yeah right.
   1236. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:05 PM (#4292159)
Cramer has to be joking with that prediction. He has Obama winning by 10 points. He'd have to win by 15 to carry Texas, which is what 440 is predicting.
I'd think so but Cramer was leading MSNBC's meltdown after the first debate. The Left needs a Morris, too.
   1237. Random Transaction Generator Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:06 PM (#4292160)
I'm starting to go around and find as many public election predictions as I can.
I'm putting them on this Google Doc for me to update when I get more.
2012 Election Predictions

Post a link to any published predictions mentioned before that I haven't listed yet, and I'll put them in there.
(Dick Morris doesn't have one for President, but does for Senate.)
   1238. tshipman Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:07 PM (#4292161)
Just spoke w/my father in the OC, and he said California has a proposition to outlaw capital punishment. Didn't know that. 400-some guys on death row.

I'm not against the death penalty per se, but currently it's applied so haphazardly I can't get behind it.


It makes me really sad, but Prop 34 is very dicey at the moment. It's currently up by 7 points, but polling volume has been really weak. It's still just at 45%. The history of these kind of ballot measures is to sputter towards the end.

I would trade a Romney win for abolishing the death penalty.
   1239. Random Transaction Generator Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:07 PM (#4292162)
Cramer has to be joking with that prediction


No, I can believe he's not that bright. I remember him getting savaged on The Daily Show for his ridiculous financial/stock advice during the 2008 meltdown.
   1240. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:10 PM (#4292165)
Two NE guys on the ticket? Yeah right.
Why not? Maybe Christie could've made NJ more competitive.

But I'm not sure about tickets and their effects on regional appeal in the first place. Ryan may not be able to get WI in the red column, for one. Romney is a man of three states yet of none at the same time - he seems just more national than regional.

I'm open to evidence.
   1241. OCF Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:10 PM (#4292166)
A scenario: a person was registered to vote, and did vote in some prior election, in State A. He then moves to State B and registers to vote in State B. Interstate transmission of this sort of information is really pretty inefficient, and the appropriate county clerk in State A does not learn this, so our person remains registered in both states. Our voter has no interest in (criminally) exploiting this and simply votes in State B, which he considers his home. But anyone attempting to add up voter registrations across all states counts him twice. And his absence counts against the turnout rate of State A. If polled, he would say he is both a registered and likely voter and express opinions about races in State B. (Or he'd be an unreachable cell-phone only voter, so whatever.)

I know this scenario happens. I don't have any estimate for how common it is, but I have no reason to think it's rare.
   1242. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:11 PM (#4292168)
FEMA didn't order water until four days after Sandy?

If true, I'm guessing this would be a much bigger story if Bush was still in office.
   1243. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:11 PM (#4292170)
Yeah, Cramer is a buffoon.
   1244. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:13 PM (#4292171)
I believe at one time I was registered to vote in at least three states and right now I'm registered to vote in two states.

PA, WI, IL and now VA and DC.
   1245. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:15 PM (#4292173)
   1246. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:16 PM (#4292174)
Why not? Maybe Christie could've made NJ more competitive.

But I'm not sure about tickets and their effects on regional appeal in the first place. Ryan may not be able to get WI in the red column, for one. Romney is a man of three states yet of none at the same time - he seems just more national than regional.

I'm open to evidence.


If Ryan can't turn Wisconsin red then there is no way Christie is going to turn NJ red. Having both Romney and Christie out of the NE does two things. It alienates power bases from other regions and increases red votes in a region that isn't going to go red which means it is largely useless. Romney won't turn Mass red, Christie isn't going to turn NJ red, and neither of them are going to turn NY or PA red so what is the point of them? Romney with his mormonism helps turn Utah and such but that region was going red anyway so again that is useless.
   1247. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:17 PM (#4292175)
I've never cut off voter registration in a state I left - figured registration in the new state made it obvious I was renouncing my, uh, citizenship in the other.
   1248. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:17 PM (#4292176)
I know this scenario happens. I don't have any estimate for how common it is, but I have no reason to think it's rare.

Every time I've registered to vote, there's been a question on the form asking for the last address at which I had been registered. I believe a notification is supposed to be sent to the election board in the prior location, but, government bureaucracy being what it is, I'm sure it doesn't always happen.
   1249. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:18 PM (#4292178)
Maybe regional tickets still count for something, but this GOP ticket doesn't carry much punch.
   1250. Morty Causa Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:20 PM (#4292180)
In other news, a man sued his wife for delivering an ugly baby.

He won.


And he vowed to donate entire proceeds to the Todd Akin campaign, as it is well known and accepted science that women can reject implantation of ugly baby embryo.
   1251. DA Baracus Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:21 PM (#4292182)
Chris Christie's highest NJ approval rating was 56%. He is a polarizing Governor, anecdotal evidence but everyone I know from NJ (I was born and raised there) either loves him or hates him. "He's okay" never crosses their mind.
   1252. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:22 PM (#4292186)
My motion for the consideration of Christie as veep is withdrawn.
   1253. Greg K Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:23 PM (#4292188)
I can't speak to American systems of registration, but I've lost track of the number of Canadian or British voting information letters I've tossed out without opening over the years.

Some morons are just dead-set against correcting their ignorance on voting matters.
   1254. Tilden Katz Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:24 PM (#4292190)
Most VP's have little to no impact on the ticket, especially with the decline of regional politics since the passing of the Civil Rights Act. Who besides Palin has had an impact (for good or bad) since JFK picked LBJ?
   1255. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:26 PM (#4292192)
The one thing that has always bother me is that if Ohio is such an important state why don't we see more Presidential candidates coming from Ohio? You'd think one of the parties would come out with a Ohio-Florida ticket or something like that. Yet we get Texas and Illinois over the last 12 years and both of them are pretty safe states for their parties.
   1256. Random Transaction Generator Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:28 PM (#4292195)
Who besides Palin has had an impact (for good or bad) since JFK picked LBJ?


Dan Quayle didn't hurt Bush that much (Dukakis self-inflicted his own wounds), but he didn't look that good of a pick in 1988.
   1257. Fred Lynn Nolan Ryan Sweeney Agonistes Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:28 PM (#4292196)
Just spoke w/my father in the OC, and he said California has a proposition to outlaw capital punishment. Didn't know that. 400-some guys on death row.

I'm not against the death penalty per se, but currently it's applied so haphazardly I can't get behind it.


It makes me really sad, but Prop 34 is very dicey at the moment. It's currently up by 7 points, but polling volume has been really weak. It's still just at 45%. The history of these kind of ballot measures is to sputter towards the end.

I would trade a Romney win for abolishing the death penalty.

The anti-death-penalty folks finally wised up and stopped trying to sell this as a "21st century barbarism" issue, and started selling it as a "state saves $" issue.

On balance I think it will save CA money. But it will also result in more dicey cases going to trial, instead of settling at LWOP / "slow death," and that's great.
Taking that death-penalty hammer away from the govt is an enormous positive, which will reveal itself over time at both the trial and appellate levels.
   1258. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:32 PM (#4292198)
The anti-death-penalty folks finally wised up and stopped trying to sell this as a "21st century barbarism" issue, and started selling it as a "state saves $" issue.
Does it? Huh. That hadn't even crossed my mind. Thanks for the info.

Another point against capital punishment - gotta save coin where you can.
   1259. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:33 PM (#4292201)
You'd think one of the parties would come out with a Ohio-Florida ticket or something like that.
Rubio-Portman '16!
   1260. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:33 PM (#4292202)
Two NE guys on the ticket? Yeah right.

Why not? Maybe Christie could've made NJ more competitive.
Well, if Romney's people looked at the history of such things they would have found that a veep choice swings only around 2% of his/her state's vote. Romney's down in NJ by 12, according to RCP. It would have been unprecedented for Christie to have swung the state.

Had there been the right Ohioan veep, though? Turmoil!

The one thing that has always bother me is that if Ohio is such an important state why don't we see more Presidential candidates coming from Ohio? You'd think one of the parties would come out with a Ohio-Florida ticket or something like that. Yet we get Texas and Illinois over the last 12 years and both of them are pretty safe states for their parties.
A prez candidate with a real shot at winning is a pretty rare bird. I don't think there's any way to create a breeding ground for them in a particular state (no snark, I just don't know how else to say it). A Portman-Rubio ticket in 2012 (probably the strongest candidate from each state) would have lost both Ohio and Florida by around 5% rather than 7% for a comparable Portman-Rubio from other states. For a variety of reasons they were never going to be strong, national candidates. Their giving the GOP ticket a bump in OH and FL wouldn't have compensated for their overall weaknesses.

Even if they would have swung OH and FL their weaknesses would have cost the ticket VA, CO, NH, NV, PA, NM, MI, WI, NC, IA...

FTFA:

“He’d be great anywhere there are ordinary white men,” the official said. “They would have loved [Christie] because here’s this straight-talking, hard-charging, in-your-face guy, and he’s a man’s man.
He's two men's man!

   1261. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:34 PM (#4292203)
Most VP's have little to no impact on the ticket, especially with the decline of regional politics since the passing of the Civil Rights Act. Who besides Palin has had an impact (for good or bad) since JFK picked LBJ?

It's possible but Tennessee went blue for Clinton twice despite Tennessee getting red and redder. Since the 1950's the only Dem Presidents to take Tennessee were LBJ, Carter once, and Clinton twice.
   1262. tshipman Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:36 PM (#4292206)
It's possible but Tennessee went blue for Clinton twice despite Tennessee getting red and redder. Since the 1950's the only Dem Presidents to take Tennessee was LBJ, Carter once, and Clinton twice.


Of course, it voted Republican when Gore was at the top of the ticket, so that kinda weakens that argument.
   1263. 'Spos Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:37 PM (#4292207)
The anti-death-penalty folks finally wised up and stopped trying to sell this as a "21st century barbarism" issue, and started selling it as a "state saves $" issue.


I've never understood how people who "don't trust big government" would give said government the power of life & death.
   1264. zenbitz Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:46 PM (#4292211)
So all 3 of silvers senate misses he called as 60-40? So he should hit more than half, but will still randomly have a bad day.
   1265. Shredder Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:48 PM (#4292213)
It's possible but Tennessee went blue for Clinton twice despite Tennessee getting red and redder. Since the 1950's the only Dem Presidents to take Tennessee were LBJ, Carter once, and Clinton twice.
How much support did Perot steal from Bush and Dole in TN?
   1266. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:51 PM (#4292214)
If polling methodology was foolproof, Nate wouldn't have predicted Sen. Ken Buck, Sen. Joe Miller, or Sen. Sharron Angle back in 2010, or underestimated the GOP's House gains by over 20 percent.

Again, Silver estimated 54 House pickups. That is 14.3% short of 63.

Silver hedged on Joe Miller weeks before Election Day, writing a column specifically warning about Miller's falling prospects when he was still a sizeable favorite.
   1267. DA Baracus Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:52 PM (#4292216)
1992: Clinton 47, Bush 42, Perot 10
1996: Clinton 48, Dole 46, Perot 6

Wikipedia has it to 4 decimal places but I rounded it.
   1268. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:55 PM (#4292217)
How much support did Perot steal from Bush and Dole in TN?

1992:
Clinton 933,521 (47.1%)
Bush 841,300 (42.4%)
Perot 199,968 (10.1%)

1996:
Clinton 909,146 (48.0%)
Dole 863,530 (45.6%)
Perot 105,918 (5.6%)

Assuming that every Perot vote was a vote siphoned from the two main parties-- no doubt with a giant sucking sound-- both GOP candidates would have needed roughly 75% of Perot's total to get past Clinton.
   1269. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: November 03, 2012 at 09:55 PM (#4292218)
@1265:

47-42-10 in 1992
49-46-6 in 1996

Don't know the breakdown, but Perot would have taken a pretty even share from each in a midSouth state.

Rana Foorahrar of Time is suggesting the House might go Dem. Scary.

coke to GB. And DA.

If polling methodology was foolproof, Nate wouldn't have predicted Sen. Ken Buck, Sen. Joe Miller, or Sen. Sharron Angle back in 2010, or underestimated the GOP's House gains by over 20 percent.

Again, Silver estimated 54 House pickups. That is 14.3% short of 63.
But 'over 20 percent' sounds so much worse than '14.3%'.

Silver also missed the 2010 election BY MORE THAN EIGHT SEATS! Which might not be as bad as HE WAS OFF BY ALMOST 15 PER CENT!!
   1270. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:00 PM (#4292221)
PPP has Obama +6 in Pennsylvania (52-46) with a D+10 sample. (2008 was D+7, 2010 was D+2.)

Huge crowd for Romney in Colorado tonight.
   1271. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq. Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:00 PM (#4292222)
Chris Christie's highest NJ approval rating was 56%. He is a polarizing Governor, anecdotal evidence but everyone I know from NJ (I was born and raised there) either loves him or hates him. "He's okay" never crosses their mind.
I'm going to go out on a limb and say that Christie's approval rating is around 90% right now.
   1272. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:04 PM (#4292224)
Of course, it voted Republican when Gore was at the top of the ticket, so that kinda weakens that argument.

It does and it doesn't. By the time Gore ran the state was even redder, he'd been away from the state for 8 years, running against another southerner, and had Lieberman as his running mate.

I'm not saying that Gore moved the needle by 10 points for Clinton but I think the presence of Gore on the ticket certainly helped gather a few points in Tennessee.
   1273. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:06 PM (#4292226)
But 'over 20 percent' sounds so much worse than '14.3%'.

Silver also missed the 2010 election BY MORE THAN EIGHT SEATS!

The day before Election Day 2010, Nate was still giving the Dems a 16 percent chance of holding the House. Today, Nate gives Romney a 16 percent chance of winning the White House. Does anyone seriously believe 2010 was more of a toss-up election than 2012, or that Dems were better positioned in 2010 than Romney is positioned in 2012? Anyone?

The Dems had to win dozens of elections in 2010 to hold the House. Romney has to gain 2 points in Ohio — if he's even behind in the first place.
   1274. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:06 PM (#4292227)
So all 3 of silvers senate misses he called as 60-40? So he should hit more than half, but will still randomly have a bad day.

I don't think it was 60-40 either. Someone had the link to the three predictions on the last page and I'd say it was something like 70-30 to 75-25. The Nevada one was the biggest miss where I think he had Angle as 86% likely to win the state.
   1275. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:07 PM (#4292229)
Even if they would have swung OH and FL their weaknesses would have cost the ticket VA, CO, NH, NV, PA, NM, MI, WI, NC, IA...

The ticket they have now is going to cost them most of those states or they are safely red states.
   1276. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:09 PM (#4292232)
The day before Election Day 2010, Nate was still giving the Dems a 16 percent chance of holding the House. Today, he gives Romney a 16 percent chance of winning the White House. Does anyone seriously believe 2010 was more of a toss-up election than 2012? Anyone?

How do you cut and paste an entire page from this thread? This was already asked and answered.
   1277. Tilden Katz Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:09 PM (#4292233)
Does anyone seriously believe 2010 was more of a toss-up election than 2012? Anyone?


They are equally non-toss-ups. In both cases there would need to be systemic polling error for the predicted result not to occur.
   1278. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:10 PM (#4292234)
Ooh. Former Clinton aide endorses Romney. Gamechanger?

Governor Romney has a plan to restore the prosperity this country deserves and expects. He will work with people of good will no matter what their party, and he will pursue the policies that are in the best interest of our country, no matter who proposes them. That’s what President Obama promised to do four years ago. But like so many of his promises, bipartisan cooperation is just another one he has broken. We can’t have four more years of failed policies and two parties that can’t work together. We need the change Mitt Romney is offering.


You can't make this stuff up.

Perhaps the endorsement came wrapped in a copy of The Des Moines Register endorsing Romney in part because under President Romney Republicans are more likely to work with Democrats. It does have the same odor to it...

It's a little bit interesting, that this go-round no one's bothering to play the bipartisanship card. It's not even a fantasy any more.
   1279. DA Baracus Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:10 PM (#4292236)
Does anyone seriously believe 2010 was more of a toss-up election than 2012? Anyone?


Is this the political version of scouts vs stats?
   1280. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:13 PM (#4292239)
Huge crowd for Romney in Colorado tonight.

As huge as this?

Or the crowd from this event? Politico: "The campaign announced that 30,000 people attended, but Secret Service sources said just 15,000 went through metal detectors."

Taunting aside, crowd size braggadocio (on either side) makes the 7-Eleven color-coded coffee cup system look scientific.
   1281. tshipman Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:15 PM (#4292242)
Does anyone seriously believe 2010 was more of a toss-up election than 2012? Anyone?


Yes? I mean, in 2010, it took really high R turnout to get those results. All the 50/50 races broke towards R. That's what happens in a wave.

There was roughly a 14% chance that all the polling was wrong in 2010 as well. Turns out it wasn't.
   1282. DA Baracus Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:16 PM (#4292244)
Or the crowd from this event? Politico: "The campaign announced that 30,000 people attended, but Secret Service sources said just 15,000 went through metal detectors."


I'm willing to believe that 30k showed up but when they saw that Kid Rock was performing half of them left, making both counts accurate.
   1283. Gonfalon Bubble Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:17 PM (#4292245)
Or maybe the 30,000 were all like Kid Rock's former stagemate Joe C., and therefore only counted as 0.5 apiece.

   1284. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:19 PM (#4292246)
They are equally non-toss-ups. In both cases there would need to be systemic polling error for the predicted result not to occur.

No, not in both cases; just in 2010. If Romney wins Ohio and Colorado, both of which are well within the margin of error, that will hardly constitute systemic polling error.
   1285. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:20 PM (#4292247)
Ooh--where was that doctored photo from the Romney campaign analyzed? Daily Beast? Politico?

Latebreaking crowdgasms is a time-honored ploy. McCain was off the charts in the last days of 2008. Dole was wowing 'em in '96. It's not always complete fraud, though. Some of it is the funeral aspect that draws folks.

Politico: "The campaign announced that 30,000 people attended, but Secret Service sources said just 15,000 went through metal detectors."
And 14,500 of that was a junior staffer named Bugs dashing back and forth through a detector.

edit: Oh. It was Buzzfeed. Click and learn.
   1286. DA Baracus Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:20 PM (#4292248)
Or maybe the 30,000 were all like Kid Rock's former stagemate Joe C., and therefore only counted as 0.5 apiece.


There's a non-zero chance of this too.
   1287. Tilden Katz Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:27 PM (#4292252)
The margin of error for a polling aggregation of dozens of polls is very small.
   1288. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:31 PM (#4292254)
The margin of error for a polling aggregation of dozens of polls is very small.

Smaller than one point?
   1289. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:34 PM (#4292257)
Smaller than one point?


Possibly. But RCP shows Obama up 2.9 points in Ohio anyway. The margin of error from 11 combined polls which surveyed a total of 9,709 likely voters is less than 2.9 points.
   1290. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:37 PM (#4292259)
For anyone who hasn't seen it, the graphics here, showing the various treed paths to the White House, are pretty cool. As enumerated only among 9 swing states, and omitting the likelihood of a given tree, Obama has 431 ways to win; Romney has 76, and there are 5 ways to tie.

Clickable, too! If Obama wins Iowa, those 431-76-5 branches reduce to 225-30-1.

Of the 9 states it lists, I make WI the likeliest Obama win, which reduces the branching to 230-24-2. Add NV (second likeliest) to Obama's column, and you get 119-9-0.

Just Obama nailing OH yields 244-11-1. Give Romney NC and you get 116-11-1. If Obama takes OH and VA, and Romney gets NC, Romney has all of 1 out.

The best I can see for Romney as of 11 pm or so is something like, he takes NC, FL, VA, and CO, while Obama takes NV and WI, leaving him and Obama with 4 paths each.

Cool toy.
   1291. bunyon Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:45 PM (#4292264)
This must be what it would be like to have a week long rain delay just before Game 7 of the World Series.
   1292. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:46 PM (#4292265)
When you're up 4 games to 2?

[rimshot]
   1293. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:49 PM (#4292268)
Possibly. But RCP shows Obama up 2.9 points in Ohio anyway. ...

Right, but the margins in Virginia, Florida, Colorado, and New Hampshire are 0.3, 1.4, 0.6, and 1.5, respectively. (And if he's regressing those Ohio polls to historical party splits and voting trends, Obama has less than a 2.9-point lead there.)
   1294. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:51 PM (#4292271)
Obama has 431 ways to win; Romney has 76, and there are 5 ways to tie.

Yes, but if you give Romney North Carolina & Florida, Obama has 66 and Romney 58, with 4 ties - that still seems like a lot of ties! If Virginia goes Romney, too, as I suspect it will, Romney has almost twice as many paths as Obama.
   1295. Monty Predicts a Padres-Mariners WS in 2016 Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:52 PM (#4292272)
(And if he's regressing those Ohio polls to historical party splits and voting trends, Obama has less than a 2.9-point lead there.)


But 2.9 is what RCP says, too, and I thought that was a straight average.
   1296. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:55 PM (#4292276)
...Romney has almost twice as many paths as Obama.
Ah, but O is pretty much a lock to take Nevada and Wisconsin, bumping him back into a 9 to 7 lead.

But 2.9 is what RCP says, too, and I thought that was a straight average.
Plus, failing to adjust historical results retroactively to give the incumbent the advantage of having one of the best state economies in the country (as is the case in 2012) is simply loopy wishful thinking. When your best shot is a tie, and that's according to Rasmussen, time's a running out.
   1297. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:55 PM (#4292277)
But 2.9 is what RCP says, too, and I thought that was a straight average.

You can't trust that liberal organ.
   1298. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:55 PM (#4292278)
This must be what it would be like to have a week long rain delay just before Game 7 of the World Series.

Yeah, only one new national poll came out today (Rasmussen), and that one was unchanged since yesterday (a tie). For whatever reason the WaPo tracking poll never showed up on either RCP or its own website.

-------------------------------------------

Obama has 431 ways to win; Romney has 76, and there are 5 ways to tie.


Yes, but if you give Romney North Carolina & Florida, Obama has 66 and Romney 58, with 4 ties - that still seems like a lot of ties! If Virginia goes Romney, too, as I suspect it will, Romney has almost twice as many paths as Obama.

If I had some ham, I'd make a ham sandwich, as soon as I could get me some bread.
   1299. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:57 PM (#4292280)
But 2.9 is what RCP says, too, and I thought that was a straight average.


You can't trust that liberal organ.

Now, now----I've heard that they're compassionate Christian conservatives. You know, like snapper.
   1300. bunyon Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:58 PM (#4292281)
I can't imagine NC won't go Romney.

Andy, it wasn't the lack of polls coming out. It's the endless analysis of the polls that are out. The vote will be soon enough everyone. Chill.
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