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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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   1301. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 10:58 PM (#4292282)
But 2.9 is what RCP says, too, and I thought that was a straight average.

RCP is a straight average, and Nate supposedly regresses such data to the mean, and yet Nate projects Obama to win Ohio by that same 2.9.
   1302. Monty Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:03 PM (#4292285)
RCP is a straight average, and Nate supposedly regresses such data to the mean, and yet Nate projects Obama to win Ohio by that same 2.9.


Yes, both RCP and 538 say that Ohio is Obama +2.9%. Weird!
   1303. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:04 PM (#4292287)
Granite State Poll has New Hampshire tied, 47-47.
   1304. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:07 PM (#4292288)
Since the start of October there have been 33 polls taken in Ohio and listed by RCP. Romney was ahead in 4 of them while tied with Obama in 5 of them. If Romney wins Ohio it will be a colossal screw up by pollsters.
   1305. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:07 PM (#4292290)
You can't trust that liberal organ.

Now, now----I've heard that they're compassionate Christian conservatives. You know, like snapper.
Is that the philosophical vantage point that tells us it's okay to fire into a crowd of civilians as long as you're pure of heart?

Granite State Poll has New Hampshire tied, 47-47.
Yup. Other than Rasmussen, though, back on the 23rd, it's the first NH poll in two weeks that doesn't show Obama in the lead. Fwiw, the RCP NH average is Obama, +1.5.

re polls I feel like a drug addict.
   1306. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:11 PM (#4292292)
Granite State Poll has New Hampshire tied, 47-47.

Interesting. NH went from Obama +8 to tied in just 12 days. Independents breaking 54-32 for Romney.

***
re polls I feel like a drug addict.

Yup. Tuesday can't get here soon enough. Damn Daylight Savings is prolonging the horror.
   1307. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:13 PM (#4292295)
Cool toy.
Indeed. Didn't realize O can lose both OH and FL and still win semi-handily.
   1308. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:15 PM (#4292297)
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.)


If you follow the link in #1290 and give Obama Ohio (where he's +2.9 at RCP) and Wisconsin (where he's +5.4 at RCP), Romney has exactly one way to win: to win all of FL, NC, VA, CO, IA, and NV (if Romney wins NH, he wins outright; if Obama wins NH, it's a 269-269 tie that Romney would win in the House of Reps). Even if you make FL and NC gimmes for Romney, he has to then win 4 tossup states. The odds of winning four straight coin flips is 1-in-16, or 6.25%. If you do the math, Nate's actually giving Romney better odds than what the polling numbers are saying.
   1309. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:17 PM (#4292300)
This must be what it would be like to have a week long rain delay just before Game 7 of the World Series.
What MLB season in the 30s had a hurricane blow through in the final weeks?
   1310. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:21 PM (#4292306)
The interesting thing about NH according to RCP is that Obama is close to an all time high in % of voters for this election. His high water mark was 50%. On October 8th and since then his low water mark was 47.8 on the 16th. He is now at 49% which is higher than at any other point before hitting the 50 mark at the beginning of October. Romney's high water mark was October 20th when he had 48.8% of the vote and a 1 point lead on Obama. Since then he has declined down to his present spot of 47.5. Romney was running in the low 40's for most of the election before gaining votes in the beginning of October. If I had to guess I would say the Rockefeller Republicans decided to go with Romney this year. Vermont, except for 1996 has been closely contested for a long time.
   1311. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:25 PM (#4292309)
If you follow the link in #1290 and give Obama Ohio (where he's +2.9 at RCP) and Wisconsin (where he's +5.4 at RCP), Romney has exactly one way to win: to win all of FL, NC, VA, CO, IA, and NV (if Romney wins NH, he wins outright; if Obama wins NH, it's a 269-269 tie that Romney would win in the House of Reps). Even if you make FL and NC gimmes for Romney, he has to then win 4 tossup states. The odds of winning four straight coin flips is 1-in-16, or 6.25%. If you do the math, Nate's actually giving Romney better odds than what the polling numbers are saying.

A lot of the scenario talk I'm hearing reminds me of the desperation talks that go on at the end of a baseball season when your favorite team is down by 6 games or something.

Well, if we sweep the Blue Jays, the Yankees get swept by the Rays, then we take 2 out of 3 against the Red Sox while the Mariners take 2 from the Yankees, so on and so on . . . .we win the division by 1.

I've said it before but anything looks possible on paper. Reality is much much tougher on you. Obama doesn't need everything to break for him while Romney does which means, whether one likes it or not, that Romney is the one who is likely to lose.
   1312. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:28 PM (#4292311)
The odds of winning four straight coin flips is 1-in-16, or 6.25%. If you do the math, Nate's actually giving Romney better odds than what the polling numbers are saying.

I agree with this. I just disagree that Ohio isn't more of a toss-up than Nate's model suggests. After the major gains by the GOP in Ohio in 2010, it's hard to believe the state has swung back to being even more Dem than 2008, as some of the polls are claiming.

Add in that Dem voter registration is down ~300,000 in Ohio since 2008, Dem early and absentee voting is down ~220,000 from 2008, and GOP early and absentee voting is up ~30,000, and the math looks a lot more favorable to Romney than the polling seems to suggest. (I guess it's possible Ohio is uniquely hostile to Romney compared to prior GOP candidates in prior years, but the math seems favorable to him.)
   1313. Howie Menckel Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:33 PM (#4292318)
The religious fervor for these poll analyses demonstrated by otherwise non-religious posters (and I have no idea who those are, specifically) is intriguing.

Reminds me of WAR and its cousins, and the passionate insistence that fielding stats are now on par with the longer history of hitting stats in terms of accuracy.

It's not about whether it's true (that's possible), as much as it is about the seeming NEED for it to be true.

Faith is primal, I believe. What one has faith in, does vary.

And no, I don't know who will win on Tuesday. Gun to my head, I'll go Obama off Ohio data, but I am not so sure these polls are so accurate (either way, even).
   1314. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:35 PM (#4292322)
and the passionate insistence that fielding stats are now on par with the longer history of hitting stats in terms of accuracy.

Who are these crazy people?!
   1315. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:35 PM (#4292323)
I just disagree that Ohio isn't more of a toss-up than Nate's model suggests.


I think the issue isn't "Nate's model", though, it's what the polling results are saying. As I said on the last page, RCP is showing 11 polls with a combined sample of over 9,000 likely voters, and NONE of the 11 polls show Romney leading, while 4 of them show an Obama lead outside the poll's margin of error. Nate's key input is polling data. It's not his model you're disagreeing with, it's the data that's going into it, but that's all the data he has. It could all be wrong - and Nate says there's something like a 1-in-6 chance that it is (which is a bigger chance than you'd get by just relying on polling margins-of-error), but if so, the failure was a widespread polling failure, not a modeling error by Nate Silver.
   1316. Howie Menckel Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:39 PM (#4292325)

I still don't have a dog in the fight, but we're going back to a basic concept:

Are we saying that if Nate is "right" he is a genius and if he's not, then it's a polling failure?

Nice work if you can get it, but would anyone like to set up a more balanced way of analyzing what we should take away from the results vs Silver pre-election analysis?

Again, I like Nate's stuff and I think he's being straightforward (preposterous fourth-decimal, pandering stuff aside, for the moment, although if he wonders if he's sold his soul I'd say maybe he just month-to-month leased it).

   1317. Jack Carter, calling Beleaguered Castle Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:41 PM (#4292327)
If you follow the link in #1290 and give Obama Ohio (where he's +2.9 at RCP) and Wisconsin (where he's +5.4 at RCP), Romney has exactly one way to win: to win all of FL, NC, VA, CO, IA, and NV (if Romney wins NH, he wins outright; if Obama wins NH, it's a 269-269 tie that Romney would win in the House of Reps).
And that's giving Romney NV, where he hasn't won a poll since one in April, and has only managed to tie 3 out of the 35 polls RCP tracks since then, with Obama winning the other 32 outright. In your scenario, if Romney doesn't take NV, he doesn't have even that one way to win remaining.

Btw, Obama's RCP average in NV is 2.8 compared to his average of 2.9 in OH.

In my personal tracker I'm putting WI permanently into Obama's camp. That 5.0 RCP average edge is too much, and it's holding. Romney last beat Obama in a Rasmussen poll in mid-August. Since last December Obama beats Romney in WI 47-3-2. Give Obama Wisconsin (rather more likely than Romney taking NC), and the tree is pruned to 230-24-2.

If for the heck of it you compensate for WI by giving Romney Ohio, Obama's routes to victory still outnumber Romney something like 104 to 23. Add in Nevada for Obama and it's 55 to 9. It must really suck to be a Romney supporter right now.
   1318. Spahn Insane Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:41 PM (#4292328)
Hm. Discuss.
   1319. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:41 PM (#4292329)
LA Times-Today

In some states, the statistical picture seems fairly clear. In Nevada, for example, where early voting finished Friday, Democrats have a formidable lead, solidifying the forecasts from polls that have suggested Nevada will wind up in the president’s column.

Registered Democrats outnumbered registered Republicans by almost 48,000 ballots out of more than 700,000 cast in the state, according to figures released Saturday by the Nevada secretary of state’s office. The early vote amounted to 56% of the registered voters statewide, which is up from 2008. Since not all registered voters will cast a ballot, the numbers suggest that about two-thirds of the Nevada vote is already over.

To win the state, Mitt Romney would have to rack up a large majority among the early voters who were not registered in either party (19% of the early turnout) and win heavily on election day – a tall order.

The Democratic margin is smaller, but still formidable in Iowa, where about 614,000 people have voted, according to state statistics compiled by George Mason University political scientist Michael McDonald. Iowa Democrats lead Republicans among the early voters by an 11-point margin, 43% to 32%.

The picture seems more favorable to the Republicans in Colorado, where early voting also ended Friday and where almost 80% of the vote in 2008 was cast early. Republicans hold a small advantage in party registration among early voters so far -- 36.9% to 34.6%. Four years ago, it was the Democrats who held a small margin among early voters. The flip is a good sign for Republicans; on the other hand, Obama won the state in 2008 by 9 percentage points over Sen. John McCain, giving him a substantial cushion.

Florida, the nation’s biggest swing-vote prize, wraps up its early voting Saturday night. As of midday, with about 4 million of the state’s voters having cast ballots, registered Democrats had built up a margin of more than 100,000 votes over registered Republicans.

That’s a considerably smaller margin than in 2008 – and also a smaller absolute number, reflecting the fact that the state has fewer days of early voting this year.
   1320. Tilden Katz Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:42 PM (#4292332)
After the major gains by the GOP in Ohio in 2010, it's hard to believe the state has swung back to being even more Dem than 2008, as some of the polls are claiming.


Maybe Ohioans want to brushback the GOP for overreach? They did reject the party's main legislative accomplishment by a hefty margin last year.
   1321. Steve Treder Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:46 PM (#4292343)
Hm. Discuss.

Niall Ferguson will surely claim that the "Chicago boys" are behind this.
   1322. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:46 PM (#4292344)
I think the issue isn't "Nate's model", though, it's what the polling results are saying. As I said on the last page, RCP is showing 11 polls with a combined sample of over 9,000 likely voters, and NONE of the 11 polls show Romney leading, while 4 of them show an Obama lead outside the poll's margin of error. Nate's key input is polling data. It's not his model you're disagreeing with, it's the data that's going into it, but that's all the data he has. It could all be wrong - and Nate says there's something like a 1-in-6 chance that it is (which is a bigger chance than you'd get by just relying on polling margins-of-error), but if so, the failure was a widespread polling failure, not a modeling error by Nate Silver.

I'd say there is virtually no way Obama is losing Ohio. Polling numbers on who is voting early is going hugely for Obama while polling numbers for those planning on voting election day is pretty much even. The voter id on early ballots is a red herring in that a)Dems have drawn almost as well as they did in 2008, B)about 10% or more of those labeled as Republican are actually lefties who took part in the Republican primary, and C) if you didn't take part in a primary you got labeled as an independent. Add all that together and it reaffirms the polling data that says Obama is killing Romney in early voting.

It just isn't going to happen for Romney in Ohio.
   1323. Monty Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:47 PM (#4292345)
Are we saying that if Nate is "right" he is a genius and if he's not, then it's a polling failure?


I think if Nate is "more right than RCP" then he's onto something. But to take Ohio as an example, both Nate and the RCP average say the same thing, so if one is wrong, they both are and it's the fault of bad polling.

To measure Nate's performance, I think you need to figure out where his predictions vary from RCP (or other popular predictions or poll aggregators) and see if he's more or less accurate than them.
   1324. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:50 PM (#4292352)
Are we saying that if Nate is "right" he is a genius


I'm certainly not saying it takes a genius to look at 11 polls of over 9,000 voters, see that Obama has led in 10, by a statistically significant amount in several of them, with the 11th being a tie, and say that means that Obama is very likely to win Ohio. Nor does it take all that much genius to look at the overall electoral map and see that if Obama wins Ohio, he's almost certain to win the election. Nate Silver just translated that into a probability - and actually a fairly conservative one at that.
   1325. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq. Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:50 PM (#4292354)
Are we saying that if Nate is "right" he is a genius and if he's not, then it's a polling failure?
If Nate is right, he's going to be getting a lot more positive notoriety for being so publicly confident about an Obama win when the media was calling it a tossup, and if he's wrong, it's because the polling data is wrong, because a quick eyeball of the polling data says that Obama is a heavy favorite. No sabermetrics needed.
   1326. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:51 PM (#4292356)
Nate's key input is polling data. It's not his model you're disagreeing with, it's the data that's going into it,

Well, I'm sort of disagreeing with Nate's model. If the straight average of the Ohio polls is Obama +2.9, and Nate claims to regress that data to the historical mean, but then Nate's model still projects Obama to win Ohio by that same +2.9, then something seems amiss.

Nate seems to be adjusting the average up by 0.3 and then back down by 0.3, so he's doing some sort of regression, but he also seems to be taking the very optimistic pro-Dem party ID splits at face value. In Ohio, he's using an NBC/Marist poll that's D+9, a PPP poll that's D+8 with too few independents, a Quinnipiac poll that's D+8. If Obama has to get 2008's turnout and party advantage to get a 2-point lead, it seems incredibly optimistic to give him 85 percent odds of winning the state.
   1327. Howie Menckel Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:51 PM (#4292357)
I like Monty's concept, but will the "sample size" even be enough?

We need a fair pre-election platform for how much to credit Nate if he's very accurate, how much to knock him if he's way off, and how much to weigh your take on variances from other analyses.

I think that would be more easily accomplished around here if this was only about baseball projections.

   1328. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:52 PM (#4292360)
If Nate is wrong, he's not going to be the only outfit with egg on its face - not by a longshot.
   1329. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:52 PM (#4292361)
This must be what it would be like to have a week long rain delay just before Game 7 of the World Series.


What MLB season in the 30s had a hurricane blow through in the final weeks?

The 1911 World Series was postponed by rain for six straight days between game 3 and game 4. It took eight days to play the last three World Series games in 1962. And a few people here might remember that little twelve day disturbance in 1989 that Pat Robertson probably blamed on You Know Who.

   1330. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:52 PM (#4292362)
Are we saying that if Nate is "right" he is a genius and if he's not, then it's a polling failure?


I think the model he created is sound. It's possible that Romney could win and nothing was wrong with the model. Afterall the model isn't predicting a 100% chance of Obama winning. Romney could win and the model could still be sound or Romney could win and the model could be flawed. By the time we get to the final prediction almost the % are based on the national and state polls and that is basically. The final predictions don't have a lot of the complicated additions that earlier predictions have. So the finals polls really just come down to how much weighting he gives each poll and how accurate the polls are.


If 10 polls say candidate X will win and by a margin between 3 and 5 points and on election day candidate X loses by 6 I can't see how you can blame Nate for that. About the only thing you can argue is that Nate should have somehow realized that all of the polling was deeply flawed and he needed to adjust it based on some factors that aren't apparent by a lot of people.

Now then if the polling says that candidate X will win by 3 points and he says that candidate X will lose by 2 then you got yourself scenarios where Nate picked wrong and he is likely to blame for being wrong.
   1331. Monty Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:54 PM (#4292364)
I like the concept, but will the "sample size" even be enough?

We need a fair pre-election platform for how much to credit Nate if he's very accurate, how much to knock him if he's way off, and how much to weigh your take on variances from other analyses.


You know who'd be great at that kind of analysis? Nate Silver! Too bad he's probably busy.
   1332. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq. Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:55 PM (#4292365)
If Nate is wrong, he's not going to be the only outfit with egg on its face - not by a longshot.
He'll be the most notable one, though.
   1333. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:55 PM (#4292366)
You know who'd be great at that kind of analysis? Nate Silver! Too bad he's probably busy.
I was just thinking we won't lack for post-mortems/report cards come Wednesday.
   1334. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:55 PM (#4292367)
RCP and Nate don't both use the exact same polls do they? Nor do they weight them the same. It is quite possible for Nate to use different variables and for his model and RCP's come up with similar numbers. Afterall we are talking about numerous polls with very large sample sizes at the very end of the election cycle. If they were diverging by a great deal that would be more worrisome than similar numbers.
   1335. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:56 PM (#4292368)
He'll be the most notable one, though.
Won't know what to do with myself if the guy who nails it is Mr. Unskewed.
   1336. Best Regards, President of Comfort, Esq. Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:58 PM (#4292370)
Won't know what to do with myself if the guy who nails it is Mr. Unskewed.
Grab a gun, because the election will have been stolen.
   1337. McCoy Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:58 PM (#4292372)
I was just thinking we won't lack for post-mortems/report cards come Wednesday.

I'm eagerly awaiting to hear how all the polls were wrong and Nate was wrong as well but they just happened to get lucky when Obama wins the election.

Something like the polls predicted a 4 point win in state X but he only won by 2.4. See I was right the polls were overcounting Dems so I'm still right.
   1338. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 03, 2012 at 11:59 PM (#4292373)
I'd say there is virtually no way Obama is losing Ohio. Polling numbers on who is voting early is going hugely for Obama while polling numbers for those planning on voting election day is pretty much even.

Dem early voting in Ohio is reportedly down ~220,000 from 2008 while GOP early voting is up ~30,000. That 250,000-vote swing accounts for almost all of Obama's 2008 margin of victory in Ohio.
   1339. Monty Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:00 AM (#4292374)
Wait, if "Polling numbers on who is voting early is going hugely for Obama" how does that match up with "Dem early voting in Ohio is reportedly down ~220,000 from 2008 while GOP early voting is up ~30,000"?
   1340. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:03 AM (#4292378)
Isn't it because early voting numbers have a correlation to primary turnout? Dems didn't have a prez primary this year. (Well, technically, Ohio did - but ou know what I mean.)
   1341. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:03 AM (#4292379)
Wait, if "Polling numbers on who is voting early is going hugely for Obama" how does that match up with "Dem early voting in Ohio is reportedly down ~220,000 from 2008 while GOP early voting is up ~30,000"?

That's one of the big problems with the polls of Ohio, which seems to be getting little attention.

Poll after poll in Ohio has been over-counting early voters by 8 to 15 percentage points. That is, the Ohio elections people have said that X percent of the electorate has voted, but the polls are claiming as much as X+15 have done so.

For example, one of last week's PPP polls had 36 percent of Ohioans voting early, but only ~22 percent of Ohioans had actually voted early as of that same date.
   1342. McCoy Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:05 AM (#4292380)
Wait, if "Polling numbers on who is voting early is going hugely for Obama" how does that match up with "Dem early voting in Ohio is reportedly down ~220,000 from 2008 while GOP early voting is up ~30,000"?

Is this Joe again? Those are garbage numbers that I believe were stated by Karl Rove and aren't even close to being accurate. Dem voting isn't down by that much and again because of the nature of Ohio's system of labeling early balloters as "democrats" or "republicans" the counts are not very accurate. If you voted in the Republican primary this year and then requested a absentee or early ballot you were considered a Republican voter asking for a ballot. If you voted as a Dem this year you were considered a Democrat requesting a ballot. The exits polls for the Republican primary put about 10% of the people or more who voted in that election as Dems/lefties. Furthermore as I've dug deeper into Ohio's systems I've read in more than one place that if you didn't vote in this year's primary then you got labeled as an independent. Dems ain't down in this election.

The polling of Ohio has shown that the vast majority of people voting early are voting for Obama. No matter what Rove wants to say he cannot wipe away numerous polls showing that Obama is leading by huge numbers in early polling.

About 25% of those registered to vote have voted already in Ohio. We won't know the final % of early balloters until people actually vote on Tuesday. Right now it looks like numerous polls are underestimating how many people are actually going to vote on Tuesday. But here is the thing, with 25% of the vote in Obama has a huge lead so even if somehow Ohio gets a very huge turnout Romney has to win on Tuesday by more than just a small handfull of points. He has to win big and no poll has Romney up big in Ohio.
   1343. Tilden Katz Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:07 AM (#4292381)
Isn't it because early voting numbers have a correlation to primary turnout? Dems didn't have a prez primary this year. (Well, technically, Ohio did - but ou know what I mean.)


Yes. For the purposes of early voting your party affiliation is based on which, if any, primary you voted in the previous spring. Democrats had no incentive to vote in their own primary, especially when compared to 2008.
   1344. Jolly Old St. Nick Is A Jolly Old St. Crip Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:07 AM (#4292382)
Ohioans line up for early voting in the battleground state

Four years ago, early voting was a option [in Ohio] for each of the five weekends during the voting period. This year that was reduced to one. Some Ohio election boards, particularly in urban counties, have been reporting that fewer people have so far taken advantage of the in-person early-vote option this year, when polls until now have been open only on workdays.

But the Ohio secretary of state’s office said Saturday that, statewide, 1.6 million people had voted by mail or in person as of Friday, a figure that puts the state on track to top 2008 early-vote tallies.


I wouldn't be underestimating the ability of the ground game on both sides to get out the vote in Ohio this year. Both party bases are scared half to death of a victory by the other side, and fear is a great motivator. There are going to be a hell of a lot of buses tomorrow headed straight from both the white churches and the black churches to the polling places. I must have been contacted about hosting neighborhood calling parties about a dozen times in the last few weeks, and I live in ####### Maryland.
   1345. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:09 AM (#4292385)
the Ohio elections people have said that X percent of the electorate has voted, but the polls are claiming as much as X+15 have done so.


Are the polls claiming that X+n percent of the electorate have voted or X+n percent of likely voters have already done so, because the percent of likely voters who have already voted should be higher than the percent of the total electorate (e.g., if 60% of total voters are likely voters and 10% of total voters have already voted, then 17% of likely voters have already voted)?
   1346. McCoy Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:12 AM (#4292389)
re 1344.

If the numbers are up to 1.6 million that is a huge bump from just days ago. Something like 1.25 million people had requested early/absentee ballots and at that point only about 60,000 people hadn't turned them in yet. I don't really know if it is possible for 400,000 people to have requested a ballot and turned it in in less than a week.
   1347. McCoy Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:13 AM (#4292390)
Are the polls claiming that X+n percent of the electorate have voted or X+n percent of likely voters have already done so, because the percent of likely voters who have already voted should be higher than the percent of the total electorate (e.g., if 60% of total voters are likely voters and 10% of total voters have already voted, then 17% of likely voters have already voted)?

Bingo. But I still think the polls are underestimating the size of the Ohio electorate this year.
   1348. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:14 AM (#4292392)
Is this Joe again? Those are garbage numbers that I believe were stated by Karl Rove. Dem voting isn't down by that much and again because of the nature of Ohio's system of labeling early balloters "democrats" or "republicans" the counts are not very accurate. If you voted in the Republican primary this year and then requested a absentee or early ballot you were considered a Republican voter asking for a ballot. If you voted as a Dem this year you were considered a Democrat requesting a ballot.

Dem early voting is down ~220,000 and GOP early voting is up ~30,000. If this was simply a matter of Ohio voters being classified according to the primary in which they voted, where did the other ~190,000 voters go?
   1349. Monty Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:17 AM (#4292393)
Dem early voting is down ~220,000 and GOP early voting is up ~30,000


Is there a news story where I can read about that for myself?
   1350. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:17 AM (#4292394)
where did the other ~190,000 voters go?


Maybe they got reclassified as Independents because they didn't bother to vote in either primary in 2012?
   1351. McCoy Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:19 AM (#4292396)
Is there a news story where I can read about that for myself?
where did the other ~190,000 voters go?


Google Karl Rove and Ohio. I think he said it this week. Nothing Rove said actually lines up with the actual data that has been publicly available. Either he pulled those numbers from his butt or he is privy to information that nobody else has seen. Dems aren't down 220,000 ballots (note I didn't say votes since nobody knows that yet) and the Reps are up by more than 30,000.
   1352. Shredder Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:19 AM (#4292397)
Wait, if "Polling numbers on who is voting early is going hugely for Obama" how does that match up with "Dem early voting in Ohio is reportedly down ~220,000 from 2008 while GOP early voting is up ~30,000"?
I'll explain again.

Edit: It's been explained again, and again apparently.

While I'm at it, I think it's kind of hilarious that Joe keeps harping on the party splits in the polls, and YC keeps harping on the independent split, while neither of them seems to realize that there was a pretty big move of Independents out of the Republican party TO THE RIGHT, not the center (Independent != Moderate), which helps to explain both. Anybody remember that whole Tea Party thing?
   1353. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:25 AM (#4292400)
While I'm at it, I think it's kind of hilarious that Joe keeps harping on the party splits in the polls, and YC keeps harping on the independent split, while neither of them seems to realize that there was a pretty big move of Independents out of the Republican party TO THE RIGHT, not the center (Independent != Moderate), which helps to explain both. Anybody remember that whole Tea Party thing?

It's kind of hilarious that you keep harping on this, since there's actually no polling evidence to back it up. Neither Gallup's nor Rasmussen's party affiliation polls have shown this, and most 2012 national polls have shown a declining party ID split rather than a growing one.
   1354. Gold Star - just Gold Star Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:26 AM (#4292402)
But I still think the polls are underestimating the size of the Ohio electorate this year.
Would love to see states ranked by of %age of eligible turnout.
   1355. Random Transaction Generator Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:27 AM (#4292403)
The "512 Paths to the White House" is a great little tool.
   1356. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:28 AM (#4292404)
Maybe they got reclassified as Independents because they didn't bother to vote in either primary in 2012?

Maybe, but the polls of Ohio have shown Romney leading among independents, so that wouldn't seem to fit with McCoy's claim that early voters have given Obama a huge lead in Ohio. (To be clear, I don't doubt that Obama is leading early voting in Ohio, but it appears to be by a smaller margin than 2008, and McCain won Election Day voting in Ohio that year.)
   1357. McCoy Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:30 AM (#4292405)
In 2008 20.7% of registered voters requested an absentee/early ballot and those 21% ended up accounting for 29.7% of the ballots cast in 2008. Voila, Joe's a fool on this particular issue.

   1358. Shredder Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:31 AM (#4292406)
It's kind of hilarious that you keep harping on this, since there's actually no polling evidence to back it up. Neither Gallup's nor Rasmussen's party affiliation polls have shown this
Wow, the two biggest right leaning polls back up a right winger. What a shock!
   1359. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:42 AM (#4292408)
In 2008 20.7% of registered voters requested an absentee/early ballot and those 21% ended up accounting for 29.7% of the ballots cast in 2008. Voila, Joe's a fool on this particular issue.

Yet another McCoy "gotcha" that's missing the "gotcha" part.

Unless turnout is 100 percent, the above type of result will always be true in every election, and I've never claimed otherwise. But when a poll is supposed to be representative of the electorate but is off by 15 percentage points, there's a problem.
   1360. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:46 AM (#4292409)
But when a poll is supposed to be representative of the electorate but is off by 15 percentage points, there's a problem.


Could you link to one (or more) such polls, because if you're talking about the % of people who passed the likely voter screen, then having that number at X+15, where X is the percentage of total registered voters could be perfectly consistent if X is a large enough number.
   1361. Howie Menckel Posted: November 04, 2012 at 12:54 AM (#4292414)
some pundit on Twitter today claimed THIS Ohio poll was the one the insiders were watching closest, based on track record:

http://www.dispatch.com/content/stories/local/2012/11/04/dispatch-poll-shows-ohio-a-toss-up.html

has it Obama 50, Romney 48, not sure I make anyone completely happy with that info but I guess the Romneyiacs will like it better...

   1362. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:00 AM (#4292418)
dispatch-poll-shows-ohio-a-toss-up.html

has it Obama 50, Romney 48


This drives me nuts!! This poll has a margin-of-error of 2.2 points. A 2 point lead with a 95% confidence interval of +/- 2.2 pts is NOT a tossup as the term is generally viewed - that's not a 50/50 result, that's much closer to a 90/10 result - i.e., it's entirely consistent with Nate Silver's current odds for Ohio. For that matter, a 50-48 result could actually be a difference of more than 2.2 (e.g., 50.1 - 47.6 = 2.5 pt lead); at least express the margin of error and the results to the same level of precision.
   1363. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:00 AM (#4292419)
Wow, the two biggest right leaning polls back up a right winger. What a shock!

You've made that claim in #1352 several times, so I assume you have all sorts of polling to back it up.

***
Could you link to one (or more) such polls, because if you're talking about the % of people who passed the likely voter screen, then having that number at X+15, where X is the percentage of total registered voters could be perfectly consistent if X is a large enough number.

I'll have to go look through RCP's links, but the most glaring one that comes to mind is last week's PPP poll of Ohio.

We're really getting into the weeds here, but I thought we were talking about the percentage of early voters (?). E.g., if 20 percent of the electorate votes early and turnout is expected to be 70 percent, then early voters should end up equaling 29 percent of voters. But some of these polls have been way over-counting early voters, to the point the samples don't seem representative.
   1364. McCoy Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:05 AM (#4292420)
Did some digging and apparently Ohio's Secretary of State has released new info and they are in fact at 1.6 million early voters already. On October 26th they were at 1.2 million. That's a huge jump and it means they are likely to surpass their 2008 numbers, Unless more people vote this time than in 2008 it is very likely that early ballots will make up 30 to 35% of the total votes this year which means the polls were accurate to state that a third or more of the people who were going to vote had voted. 25% of registered voters can equal rather easily 35% of those who do actually vote. There should be nothing mystifying about these poll numbers.
   1365. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:13 AM (#4292422)
Unless more people vote this time than in 2008 it is very likely that early ballots will make up 30 to 35% of the total votes this year which means the polls were accurate to state that a third or more of the people who were going to vote had voted.

So now we're using Nov. 4 data to explain anomalies in Oct. 26 polling? That's interesting.
   1366. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:25 AM (#4292424)
A page or two back, someone asked about LV screens in prior years. Jay Cost is talking about this on Twitter right now. In 2004, Survey USA polled 1,000 adults in Ohio and passed 816 through as likely voters (81.6 percent); last week in Ohio, Survey USA polled just 685 adults and passed 603 through as likely voters (88 percent). In that example, they've cut the sample size by over 30 percent and also relaxed the LV screen. It doesn't mean the 2012 poll is less accurate, but combining a smaller sample size with a relaxed LV screen probably doesn't help.
   1367. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:31 AM (#4292428)
. . . neither of them seems to realize that there was a pretty big move of Independents out of the Republican party TO THE RIGHT, not the center (Independent != Moderate), which helps to explain both.

As indicated above, that theory is contradicted by polls of partisan affiliation that had much larger samples than any of the National Presidential Polls. It would also seem to be directly contradicted by the 2010 elections. How did the Democrats get such a shellacking if voters were less inclined to identify with the GOP?
   1368. tshipman Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:36 AM (#4292430)
It would also seem to be directly contradicted by the 2010 elections. How did the Democrats get such a shellacking if voters were less inclined to identify with the GOP?


This is trolling, right? Pretending that midterms are the same as presidential elections in terms of turnout?
   1369. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:37 AM (#4292431)
It would also seem to be directly contradicted by the 2010 elections. How did the Democrats get such a shellacking if voters were less inclined to identify with the GOP?


The premise was that people CALL themselves "Independent" but they're really conservative and vote almost exclusively for Republicans. This is entirely consistent with the 2010 results (where I'm pretty sure "Independents" supported Republicans in exit polling) and with Mitt Romney beating Barack Obama among so-called "Independents". (which is not to say whether this is the right explanation, just that 2010 doesn't contradict it)
   1370. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:39 AM (#4292432)
Two more polls out:

- ABC/WaPo national: 48-48

- Susquehanna poll of PA for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: 47-47 (!)
   1371. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:41 AM (#4292433)
This is trolling, right? Pretending that midterms are the same as presidential elections in terms of turnout?

"Trolling" ... still the most overused word at BBTF.

***
The premise was that people CALL themselves "Independent" but they're really conservative and vote almost exclusively for Republicans. This is entirely consistent with the 2010 results (where I'm pretty sure "Independents" supported Republicans in exit polling) and with Mitt Romney beating Barack Obama among so-called "Independents". (which is not to say whether this is the right explanation, just that 2010 doesn't contradict it)

That's been a common premise here, but the polling data seems to show voters defecting from the Dem party, identifying as independents, and then voting GOP, not Republicans fleeing the GOP because of the Tea Party, as "Shredder" has claimed.
   1372. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:43 AM (#4292434)
A Newspaper poll by Susquehanna Polling & Research has Pennsylvania tied 47-47. If Pennsylvania is anywhere near that close, Obama would be in big trouble.
   1373. McCoy Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:46 AM (#4292435)
The premise was that people CALL themselves "Independent" but they're really conservative and vote almost exclusively for Republicans. This is entirely consistent with the 2010 results

What's more, in the case of Ohio, people get labeled independents even if they weren't really independent if they simply hadn't voted in a primary during an election year. Thus we get crazy notions about how independents are breaking Romney's way nationally therefore the polling data for Ohio doesn't jibe with this view in mind. Independents might certainly be breaking for Romney in Ohio but as has been mentioned for months now true independents/undecideds have been a very very small % of total voters in this country for this election. Most people had made up their mind who they were going to vote for well over a month ago.
   1374. Howie Menckel Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:47 AM (#4292436)

Not sure that's the most credible poll in the world, however, to be kind iirc....

   1375. Moe Greene Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:48 AM (#4292438)
According to 538, the last poll of Susquehanna for PA had Romney ahead 49-45. At that time, other polls had Obama ahead by 4-7 points. So it's apparently a very right-leaning poll. And it's shifted 4 points in Obama's favor over the past 3 weeks.

---

ETA: From a 9/23 post on 538, referring to a Susquehanna poll for PA:

"However, Susquehanna has consistently shown much more favorable results for Mr. Romney in Pennsylvania than any other polling organization in the state. A poll they published last week also showed a very small lead for Mr. Obama, just one percentage point. And they are the only polling firm at any point in the year to have shown Mr. Obama trailing in Pennsylvania, as they did in a survey in February. The average of recent polls in Pennsylvania shows Mr. Obama about seven points ahead instead. (Susquehanna conducts polling for Republican clients in addition to its work for news organizations.)"
   1376. McCoy Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:52 AM (#4292439)
Susquehanna is a Republican polling firm that weights their data based on party registration and has a history of calling PA for Romney. He was leading by 4 points in the state according to Susquehanna in mid-October.
   1377. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:59 AM (#4292440)
It would also seem to be directly contradicted by the 2010 elections. How did the Democrats get such a shellacking if voters were less inclined to identify with the GOP?

This is trolling, right? Pretending that midterms are the same as presidential elections in terms of turnout?

Is that the best you have? Do you really think you can call everyone that disagrees with you a troll? Weak. Embarrassingly weak.

We all know that there are turnout differences between Presidential and mid-term elections; but we also know that there is no evidence supporting the convenient theory that fewer people are identifying with the Republican Party while they just happen to be winning more elections. Seems to me that the 2006 mid-term elections were an indication of Democratic gains, which were conformed in 2008. It wasn't just me, a lot of Democrats noted that, too. Similarly, the 2010 elections were an indication that the GOP was gaining, not losing, adherents.
   1378. I am going to be Frank Posted: November 04, 2012 at 01:59 AM (#4292441)
Power is still out for a lot of people in NJ and NY. Plus there is the gasoline issue. Who gets the blame if the issue doesn't resolve itself by Election Day?

Regarding setting up generators for gas stations, I'm not an electrician and don't have any experience with generators but I don't think gasoline pumps are simply things you could switch plugs with. If electrical work is needed I would t want something done hastily especially around flammable liquids.
   1379. McCoy Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:01 AM (#4292442)
The last poll that Susquehanna did for PA in 2008 was on 10/20 and it had Obama up by 8. Obama won by over 10.
   1380. Random Transaction Generator Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:03 AM (#4292444)
Susquehanna poll of PA for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: 47-47 (!)


the last poll of Susquehanna for PA had Romney ahead 49-45.


Thanks for the good news for the Obama supporters!
   1381. McCoy Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:04 AM (#4292445)
We all know that there are turnout differences between Presidential and mid-term elections; but we also know that there is no evidence supporting the convenient theory that fewer people are identifying with the Republican Party while they just happen to be winning more elections. Seems to me that the 2006 mid-term elections were an indication of Democratic gains, which were conformed in 2008. It wasn't just me, a lot of Democrats noted that, too. Similarly, the 2010 elections were an indication that the GOP was gaining, not losing, adherents.

And Democrats are expected to pick up seats in the House this year and either gain or maintain their Senate numbers while having a Presidental race with their guy in front. Isn't that signs that the Democrats are gaining while the GOP is losing support?
   1382. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:07 AM (#4292446)
Susquehanna got both the Pennsylvania Senate & Governor races right in 2010. Even, if they are off, how far do you think they are off? If Pennsylvania isn't firmly in the Democratic column, that should spell trouble for Obama in other states if they follow anything like their normal voting patterns.
   1383. McCoy Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:08 AM (#4292447)
Power is still out for a lot of people in NJ and NY. Plus there is the gasoline issue. Who gets the blame if the issue doesn't resolve itself by Election Day?

Regarding setting up generators for gas stations, I'm not an electrician and don't have any experience with generators but I don't think gasoline pumps are simply things you could switch plugs with. If electrical work is needed I would t want something done hastily especially around flammable liquids.


Many stations are already setup to run off of a generator and even if they weren't you don't hook a generator up directly to the gas pump. The generator provides power to the whole store so you would setup a transfer switch and subpanel for the main panel. If you don't already have a setup it will require an electrician which will cost money which means the gas station operator will need to charge more money for his gas and since he can't do that he won't bother to get his power going again.
   1384. Tilden Katz Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:13 AM (#4292448)
And Democrats are expected to pick up seats in the House this year and either gain or maintain their Senate numbers while having a Presidental race with their guy in front. Isn't that signs that the Democrats are gaining while the GOP is losing support?


A lot of that has to do with picking a pair of lunatics in Mourdock and Akin. An average Republican would be winning those states easily. And if Shays had beat out McMahon in Connecticut, we might be seeing a closer race there too.
   1385. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:13 AM (#4292449)
And Democrats are expected to pick up seats in the House this year and either gain or maintain their Senate numbers while having a Presidental race with their guy in front. Isn't that signs that the Democrats are gaining while the GOP is losing support?

If the Dems win by smaller margins than in 2008, then it would suggest they've lost supporters or, at minimum, have suffered a decline in enthusiasm.
   1386. McCoy Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:13 AM (#4292450)
Susquehanna got both the Pennsylvania Senate & Governor races right in 2010. Even, if they are off, how far do you think they are off? If Pennsylvania isn't firmly in the Democratic column, that should spell trouble for Obama in other states if they follow anything like their normal voting patterns.

Um, a Republican won the Gubernatorial race by almost 9 points. The GOP won the Senate seat by 2 points.

It looks like Susquehanna predicted a two point win for the Senate seat while predicting a 7 point win for the governor's race.

A better test would be to see how they fair when polling races where Democrats won.

They generally don't survey a lot of people and consequently their MoE is rather large. At least twice as large as the major pollsters.
   1387. Moe Greene Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:15 AM (#4292451)
Looks like 538 was updated recently. Obama's now at 85.1%.

Susquehanna got both the Pennsylvania Senate & Governor races right in 2010. Even, if they are off, how far do you think they are off? If Pennsylvania isn't firmly in the Democratic column, that should spell trouble for Obama in other states if they follow anything like their normal voting patterns.

I'd hope they'd get the governor race right; the winner won 54-46, which is a pretty sizable difference! The Senate race was close, but if Wikipedia is to be believed, each of the final 13 polls agreed that Toomey had the advantage. So it's not like Susquehanna went out on a limb there like they are here.

ETA: McCoy, have a Coke. Also, I'd like the 5 minutes back that it took me to research and type this up. Thanks.
   1388. Random Transaction Generator Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:15 AM (#4292452)
Susquehanna got both the Pennsylvania Senate & Governor races right in 2010. Even, if they are off, how far do you think they are off?


Well, they used to have Romney ahead in Pennsylvania by 4 points, when every other poll had Obama ahead by 4-7 points.
So let's be conservative (ha!) and say they are only off by 4 points.

47-47 becomes 49-45 Obama.
   1389. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:18 AM (#4292453)
And Democrats are expected to pick up seats in the House this year and either gain or maintain their Senate numbers while having a Presidental race with their guy in front. Isn't that signs that the Democrats are gaining while the GOP is losing support?

Now you are being silly. Democrats aren't taking over the House. They might pick up a few seats, or they might lose a few, but unless everyone looking at it is wrong, Democrats will be in the minority, likely by a larger margin than at any time during the prior GOP control of the House from 1995-2007. The Senate is an even worse example, since only one-third of the seats are up, and again it's uncertain which party is going to gain or lose a couple of seats. How is that at all comparable to 2010 or 2006? It certainly isn't an argument for fewer people identifying with the GOP in 2012.
   1390. Spahn Insane Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:19 AM (#4292455)
- Susquehanna poll of PA for the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review: 47-47 (!)

Susquehanna's the only poll that's shown a lead for Romney all year, and the Tribune-Review is the rightwing rag operated by Richard Scaife (and was the last daily paper in the country to give up on the Vince Foster murder conspiracy theories--they were still reporting on it almost daily in 1995).

So, this is kind of a right wing slant squared poll, and I'd take this result with more than the usual salt.
   1391. Spahn Insane Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:23 AM (#4292456)
If the Dems win by smaller margins than in 2008, then it would suggest they've lost supporters or, at minimum, have suffered a decline in enthusiasm.

I don't think anyone has denied that this is the case, has s/he? I don't know anyone who thinks Obama's going to get 53 percent of the vote, or win 365 EVs. The question is whether it's suppressed their enthusiasm enough to deny Obama a second term, and the polls suggest it has not.
   1392. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:26 AM (#4292457)
Looks like there may be one more Gallup Tracking Poll. From their website:
Gallup is now tentatively planning on conducting interviewing over the last four days of this week, Thursday through Sunday, to provide a final pre-election estimate of the election race. The decisions we make on the validity of the sample and the analysis of the data that results will be carefully informed by the degree of recovery from the storm over the period of the survey.
   1393. Spahn Insane Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:27 AM (#4292458)
A Newspaper poll by Susquehanna Polling & Research has Pennsylvania tied 47-47. If Pennsylvania is anywhere near that close, Obama would be in big trouble.

To the contrary: if the only poll he gets showing a lead in PA all cycle is from Susquehanna, and Susquehanna now shows him tied (in a joint venture with the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, no less), and that's the BEST result he's getting in PA, Romney's not winning the state.
   1394. ...and Toronto selects: Troy Tulowitzki Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:28 AM (#4292459)
If the Dems win by smaller margins than in 2008, then it would suggest they've lost supporters or, at minimum, have suffered a decline in enthusiasm.

It would, yes. And a win, is a win.
   1395. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:30 AM (#4292460)
I don't think anyone has denied that this is the case, has s/he? I don't know anyone who thinks Obama's going to get 53 percent of the vote, or win 365 EVs. The question is whether it's suppressed their enthusiasm enough to deny Obama a second term, and the polls suggest it has not.

McCoy seemed to be making this case in #1381. (He's also been predicting up to a 5-point Obama win, which could get him close to 53 percent in what's essentially a two-man race.)
   1396. Spahn Insane Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:36 AM (#4292461)
OK, but if so, that's pretty clearly a minority view.
   1397. Joe Kehoskie Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:38 AM (#4292462)
No disagreement there.
   1398. The Yankee Clapper Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:42 AM (#4292464)
To the contrary: if the only poll he gets showing a lead in PA all cycle is from Susquehanna, and Susquehanna now shows him tied (in a joint venture with the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, no less), and that's the BEST result he's getting in PA, Romney's not winning the state.

Obama won Pennsylvania by more than 10% in 2008, running ahead of his national vote. If he's now only a few points ahead in Pennsylvania, he well may be behind nationally. Which is why I asked those that think Susquehanna is wrong, how far could they be off even if they were incorrect about the race being tied.
   1399. Kiko Sakata Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:48 AM (#4292465)
Obama won Pennsylvania by more than 10% in 2008, running ahead of his national vote. If he's now only a few points ahead in Pennsylvania, he well may be behind nationally. Which is why I asked those that think Susquehanna is wrong, how far could they be off even if they were incorrect about the race being tied.


From the earlier cites, it sounds like Susquehanna's last PA poll was about 8 points behind the consensus of other polls, which would make the current consensus O+8 in PA, or about 2 pts down from 2008, which would translate into about a 5-pt win in 2012 if the PA/Natl split is the same in 2012 as in 2008. Nate's most recent numbers include this poll and he's predicting PA as O+5.5 (which is again about 3 pts ahead of his national lead). Seems as reasonable as anything else.
   1400. Spahn Insane Posted: November 04, 2012 at 02:50 AM (#4292466)
Obama won Pennsylvania by more than 10% in 2008, running ahead of his national vote. If he's now only a few points ahead in Pennsylvania, he well may be behind nationally. Which is why I asked those that think Susquehanna is wrong, how far could they be off even if they were incorrect about the race being tied.

Which only matters if he's down in the battleground states specifically. Sorry, but this seems like an awful lot to extrapolate from one poll from an obviously partisan source, while you urge us to ignore massive aggregations of polling across all the swing states over a period of months.

EDIT: Also, what Kiko said. Seriously--the Tribune-Review is an absolute fringe outfit. I'd take a push poll commissioned by the Daily Worker about as seriously at the other end of the spectrum.
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