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I Dissent

Back in 2000, when Al Gore tried to have the election decided by lawyers instead of the voters, the mess was sorted out by a series of court decisions, the last one the United States Supreme Court. When the high court finally ruled that the law in Florida trumped the lawyers for Gore, emotions were still strong, even among the justices. Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was particularly incensed with the decision, and she wrote a scathing criticism of the opinion, concluding wth the curt but clear phrase, "I dissent".

Short, angry, bitter, and in the minority. I now feel as I believe Justice Ginsberg felt at that time. This election was not, despite the hype, the grand demonstration of egalitarian democracy and the fulfillment of promised ideals. Rather, it proved that a slick thug from Chicago with no executive experience whatsoever can get elected President if he has enough money, is protected from tough questions by a complicit media, and runs a campaign on pure style and hype. It's not just for con men anymore.

I wrote last month that the polls were wrong. I also said that if I were wrong, I would stand and take my lumps for it. The reader will make his or her own decision, but I would like to address the facts of the polls' Otober reports, and compare that to the actual election results as they appear to be forming up. I would argue that my statement in October, however it appears now, was valid and should be considered moving ahead.

First, the election results. At this time, President-elect Obama has won 52% of the popular vote, while Senator McCain has received 46% of the popular vote. Against that, let's look at what the polls were saying on October 21:

NBC News/Wall Street Journal: 52-42 Obama
Ipsos/McClatchey: 50-42 Obama
Pew Research: 53-39 Obama
IBD/TIPP: 47-44 Obama
GWU/Battleground: 49-46 Obama
Newsweek: 53-41 Obama
Rasmussen: 52-45 Obama
Gallup (traditional): 50-46 Obama
Gallup (expanded): 51-45 Obama
Diageo/Hotline: 48-43 Obama
Reuters/C-Span/Zogby: 52-40 Obama
ABC News/Wash Post: 54-43 Obama

At first glance, three things seem to be true: Some of the polls were wrong, some were close, and most were closer on Obama's actual support than McCain's. However, these polls all show a certain number of undecideds, and this is an important factor to consider - how did the last-minute voters go? For the polls to be accurate, here's how the undecideds would have to have broken from each poll:

NBC News/Wall Street Journal: Obama stays even while McCain gains 4
Ipsos/McClatchey: Obama gains 2, while McCain gains 4
Pew Research: Obama loses 1 while McCain gains 7
IBD/TIPP: Obama gains 5 while McCain gains 2
GWU/Battleground: Obama gains 3 while McCain stays even
Newsweek: Obama loses 1 while McCain gains 5
Rasmussen: Obama stays even while McCain gains 1
Gallup (traditional): Obama gains 2 while McCain stays even
Gallup (expanded): Obama gains 1 while Mccain gains 1
Diageo/Hotline: Obama gains 4 while McCain gains 3
Reuters/C-Span/Zogby: Obama stays even while McCain gains 6
ABC News/Wash Post: Obama loses 2 while McCain gains 3

Note how many of these polls would have to claim McCain made big gains among last-minute voters, for their poll to be correct? Well then, how did last-minute voters actually vote? According to CNN, they were essentially split, with a slight edge going to Obama.

So, that means that - as I said - the polls were generally wrong.

- continued -

How big a deal is that? Let's look at the margin in those polls, and compare that to the actual 6-point margin in the election:

NBC News/Wall Street Journal: Obama by 10
Ipsos/McClatchey: Obama by 8
Pew Research: Obama by 14
IBD/TIPP: Obama by 3
GWU/Battleground: Obama by 3
Newsweek: Obama by 12
Rasmussen: Obama by 7
Gallup (traditional): Obama by 4
Gallup (expanded): Obama by 6
Diageo/Hotline: Obama by 5
Reuters/C-Span/Zogby: Obama by 12
ABC News/Wash Post: Obama by 11

Notice how much those margins support Obama, and we know now they were inflated. Consider the next fact; turnout this year was down, not up. Down by more than five million votes from 2004. Somebody did not bother to vote this year. But who was it?

Again looking at CNN, it turns out that participation by democrats was 7 points higher than republicans. There was a modest 3 percent increase nationally in democrat voter registration from 2004's tallies, while republicans dropped turnout by at least 15 percent from 2004. So if you are one of those eight million republicans who thought there was no reason to vote congratulations, you helped get Senator Thug-Light elected President. I have said all along that the election would come down to turnout, the independents, and the undecided voter, in that order.

So there it is. The polls were right and I was wrong, in so far that they predicted republicans would stay home. I disagree, however, that this means the number of people who consider themselves democrats has risen to a 7-point advantage. That will depend on how well Obama governs as President. And I have no confidence at all, that he is competent for the responsibility. That is an area where I would very much like to be wrong, because the consequences are dire indeed if I should this time prove to be right.

I would like to thank everyone who has been reading my work this campaign season. I realize that with the election over and Captain Unicorn having won the Fairy Kingdom, interest in polling and statistics will once again drop off sharply, especially by those who think the headline tells the whole story. I still maintain that the models were wrong, and the publicity of those polls may have played a role in suppressing republican support, but I accept that I will be in the minority in that opinion.


Comments (48)

When it goes well with the ... (Below threshold)
Mark:

When it goes well with the righteous, the city rejoices;
And when the wicked perish, there is jubilation.
By the blessing of the upright the city is exalted,
But it is overthrown by the mouth of the wicked.
Proverbs 11:10-11

Ok, since you are still whi... (Below threshold)
daniel:

Ok, since you are still whining about the 2000 election, that election was won by a slick thug with no experience as well!
News to you, but that election was stolen by ballot fraud.
I have more bad news, both sides, democrat and republican are controlled by the same people. Bend over and take the rfid chip.
Fools like you were on the Titanic, complaining about the suspension of tea service.
HELLO, ANYBODY HOME? OUR SHIP IS GOING DOWN!
depp=true

Amen: This election was not... (Below threshold)
chai:

Amen: This election was not, despite the hype, the grand demonstration of egalitarian democracy and the fulfillment of promised ideals. Rather, it proved that a slick thug from Chicago with no executive experience whatsoever can get elected President if he has enough money, is protected from tough questions by a complicit media, and runs a campaign on pure style and hype. It's not just for con men anymore.

It proved that a slick t... (Below threshold)
Jeff Blogworthy:

It proved that a slick thug from Chicago with no executive experience whatsoever can get elected President if he has enough money, is protected from tough questions by a complicit media, and runs a campaign on pure style and hype. It's not just for con men anymore.

I agree with all that, but I still blame the apathy of the American people at bottom. Like Ann Coulter said recently, people should expend at least as much effort researching a presidential candidate as they do when choosing a new car. Only the feeblest effort is necessary to discover who Obama is. All one has to do is take a good look under the hood. Too much effort, it seems, for the voters to bother.

Because it was a Democrat ... (Below threshold)
Indie:

Because it was a Democrat to overcome the divisiveness and discord your words are simply sour grapes.

Yes we can and yes we will. Sorry you cannot jump aboard the train of change for the better. Your loss.

I'm sorry, but unless you m... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

I'm sorry, but unless you mean Lieberman no major democrat has even tried to address or overcome divisiveness and discord.

Quite the opposite, actually, or have you forgotten the near-decade of obscene name-calling, death threats and hypocritical accusations by the democrats?

Consider the next ... (Below threshold)
Consider the next fact; turnout this year was down, not up. Down by more than five million votes from 2004.
I think you're making the same mistake that you did with analyzing Dr. McDonald's website results, namely that the current totals are final totals. Most sites are reporting that this was a record turnout -- 130 million voters. We just don't have all of them counted yet.

Also, I'd be interested to see an alalysis of state results and how your historically adjusted numbers did against the national polls.

Finally, why was your confident and arky prediction of a Republican winning the presidency in 2008 so wrong?

Oh my God!<a href="h... (Below threshold)
Al Haig:

Oh my God!
This is happening in the well stocked bunkers of Red enclaves all over America, setting off the stockpiles ammo and causing large secondary explosions.

If you mean the 2006 articl... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

If you mean the 2006 article, Joe, that was opinion, not analysis. If you are claiming that I predicted a McCain victory from poll analysis, you are claiming something other than what I said.

I have just as much right to a personal preference as you do, Joe. But I do not confuse opinion with fact, and I think you are being dishonest to pretend that an opinion piece from 2006 is the same thing as statistical analysis based on historical trends and regression mathematics.

Are you really saying that you think another thirteen million votes are there to be counted (and if so, where are they?) or are you just being an ass because that's all you know to be?

I tried to Jump on board bu... (Below threshold)
hcddbz:

I tried to Jump on board but I was told
I had no virtue.
RICH White PEOPLE were told need not apply.
Guys in the Coal industry were told they were bankrupt
Then the steel folks closed their doors
Then all heavy industry went away
Big Oil heard they were not welcomed
Corporations were told they were evil and slid away.
Now we all can live with hope and the change it has wrought.
Aunt Zeituni pass the Gourmet Friskies to all aboard the Obama express.

No I cann't for we have no more funds with out the selfish ones.

Because it was a Democra... (Below threshold)
Not One Iota:

Because it was a Democrat to overcome the divisiveness and discord your words are simply sour grapes.

Overcome divisiveness and discord? I assume you weren't around for Obama's campaign. A campaign completely based on divisiveness and discord. "...Oh, and did I mention he's black?"

Please. This election was fully bought and paid for. And it doesn't change my life at all.
Not one iota.

The plain truth is, unlike many on the left side of the aisle, the Government doesn't define me. I am neither held down by "the man", nor am I placed in power by "the man". I firmly believe that you and I have the ability to work our own destiny.

You are who you choose to be.

That said: I can, and will, continue to work towards a more responsible government, but I do not depend on it, and I urge you to do the same, or at the very least consider my words. Do you want the government to work for you, or for you to work for the government?

As for me, I will strive to elect people to our representative government that understand that the Government is not to provide for the people, but rather to step back and allow the people to provide for themselves. Our Constitution and Bill of Rights defines our Government and does not limit our freedom. Consider my words -- Do not voluntarily surrender this freedom!

DJ, your posts during this ... (Below threshold)
golonoro Author Profile Page:

DJ, your posts during this election season have been enlightening and informative, and I thank you for spending your time putting them together. I have referred many people to your blog to help them understand what was going on and to keep them from disenfranchising themselves by not voting just because they are discouraged by the polls and media. Your work was not a waste of time.

Vote count here:<a... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Vote count here:

http://www.cnn.com/ELECTION/2008/results/president/

I agree that this will climb some, but it's not going to reach the 123 million who voted in 2004, let alone the projected 130 million.

DJThe 22% liberals... (Below threshold)
Larry:

DJ

The 22% liberals always play it that way and they have learned to play to win, sometimes.

It was the economy, period.

Since it was the economy, Obama and his minions in Congress must govern to restore the economy or suffer mid-term loss. It is that simple.

I haven't a clue if the libs will, as they most always do, overreach or not. There are signs that Obama is going to attempt to govern from the center. There are signs that Reid and Pelosi won't let him. Obama isn't stupid, that has been proven.

He is also adaptable. Now we will see if what he has done in the past is an indication, or what he said as he sought the office. Most of the time, politicians forget their promises.

Quite the opposite, actually, or have you forgotten the near-decade of obscene name-calling, death threats and hypocritical accusations by the democrats?

The basic difference between conservatives and liberals is simple; conservatives mostly consider themselves to be right and liberals mostly consider themselves to be righteous.

While both sides of the political divide has its set of fruitcakes, the liberals tend to have more of same and have more aggressive varieties. If you are righteous, you have a right to name-calling and slander.

Again, it was the economy, period.

The saving grace is that it would appear that even counting Maine's two Senators on the side of liberal ideals, the core of Republican votes in the Senate will continue to be able to block the worst of the proposals floating around in Congress. We can hope anyway.

DJ, you did a great job of analysing the polls. My hat is off to you. And I thank you for the understanding you helped me develop.

Oh, and you can thank the media for the numbers of Republicans who stayed home.

All the best DJ, keep the lights on.

Larry

DJLemme just say o... (Below threshold)
Larry:

DJ

Lemme just say one more thing.

Six or eight months ago, I had a thought. It is that the economy here is dependent on more or less inexpensive energy. And about that time, energy prices were going through the roof and the mortgage mess was gaining ground.

I had the thought then that whoever won the White House was going to likely say grace over a major recession, if not depression.

I wondered if it wasn't time to put the Democrats back in to try their hand at actually governing instead of just screwing things up and blaming the Republicans, something that was obviously going on at the time.

After taking a look at the Republicans in Congress doing a bad imitation of Democratics, it also occurred to me that maybe it was time to replace a number of those folks as well.

Those thoughts are still in my head.

Long term I am not at all sure the fat lady has sung.

I have enjoyed reading your... (Below threshold)
daryl:

I have enjoyed reading your posts these last couple of weeks--was only introduced to them then. I too thought it was turnout that was going to be the deciding factor in making Obama president. Since you are much more of a stats guy than me, I hope you dive into this and see what actually happened. Did conservatives decide to stay home rather than vote for McCain? First time voters, mostly minorities and youth, I am guessing went big for Obama, but why wasn't the overall vote totals higher?

I went to bed last night believing the Republican Party has to do a better job of expanding it's membership into females & minorities--I still see that as the case the morning after. I didn't come up with any ideas but I will be checking this site to see what is being said. Thanks again for all of your hard work this election season.

"Back in 2000, when Al Gore... (Below threshold)
Herman:

"Back in 2000, when Al Gore tried to have the election decided by lawyers instead of the voters" -- Mr. Drummond

Do you mean, DJ, the American voters who gave future Nobel Laureate Al Gore a half-million more votes than Chimpy, The Moron King? Or do you refer to the voters of Florida, a majority of whom CLEARLY preferred Al Gore, a small portion of this majority getting hung up by the Butterfly Ballot (Pat Buchanan stating on National TV that hundreds of votes weren't his), with conservatives, being the type of people that they are, electing to gleefully take advantage of other people's mistakes. (After all, Mr. Jesus Christ would heartily approve of taking advantage of other people's mistakes, right, conservatives?).

"When the high court finally ruled that the law in Florida trumped the lawyers for Gore, emotions were still strong, even among the justices." -- DJ Drummond

What the Republican majority of the U.S. Supreme court arrogantly did was proclaim that the Florida Supreme Court couldn't possibly know better than the U.S. Supreme Court how necessary it was to adhere to the "Safe Harbor Deadline" UNDER FLORIDA LAW, and in its zeal to stop the vote count so that fellow Republican Bush could win, didn't even give the Florida Supreme Court a chance to make such a determination. This is what justifiably infuriated Justice Ginsburg.
depp=true

Don't try selling your crap... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Don't try selling your crap here, Herman.

dj,your analysis w... (Below threshold)
ben g:

dj,

your analysis was retarded and completely wrong, and if your ego wasn't so big you'd quit predictions and blogging forever. then again, you might serve as a useful barometer. the opposite of what you say tends to happen.

well ben, you're welcome to... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

well ben, you're welcome to your opinion. Can't say I think much of it, since it just ignores everything I posted here or the past couple months, but whatever, thanks for reading and good luck with life.

DJ,"Notice how muc... (Below threshold)
DJV:

DJ,

"Notice how much those margins support Obama, and we know now they were inflated. Consider the next fact; turnout this year was down, not up. Down by more than five million votes from 2004. Somebody did not bother to vote this year. But who was it?"

12 million votes are still uncounted. GWU Professor Michael McDonald, he of the early voting site and part of the Exit Poll Consortium, has turnout at 132 million + this morning. There were 122 million votes in 2004. About 120 million votes have been counted in 2008 so far.

Summary: stop digging your hole deeper. Your predictions were terrible and your post-mortem is even worse

<a href="http://marcambinde... (Below threshold)
DJV:

http://marcambinder.theatlantic.com/archives/2008/11/turnout_projection_133m.php

"Turnout Projection: 133m
GWU's Michael McDonald projects a national turnout of 132.8 million, or 62.3% of eligible voters."

2004 turnout was 122,267,553.

"projects" by definition me... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

"projects" by definition means it has not happened. It may or it may not come to be, but "projects" is not factual.

AP is estimating turnout is... (Below threshold)
DJV:

AP is estimating turnout is 136 mil, a 64.1 percent turnout rate, which is the highest since the 1908 election. Will you do a mea cupla post and admit to being very wrong when this projection becomes factual? I'm going to guess you won't.
depp=true

Your whole post here is pre... (Below threshold)
DJV:

Your whole post here is predicated on the notion that turnout is down from 2004 both as real numbers and as a percentage of the electorate. And it's predicated on that notion because you wrote the post less than 12 hours after the voting closed and ballots are still going to be counted for the coming week. Your post is going to be proven categorically false. You owe it to your readers, many of whom trust you (for reasons that are completely bizarre to me -- how wrong do you have to be before you're laughed off this blog and given no more credibility) to apologize and update the post/post an update when it turns out turnout is around 135 million, which is up 15 million votes from 2004 and is 2-3% increase since then.
depp=true

<a href="http://www.pnj.com... (Below threshold)
DJV:

http://www.pnj.com/article/20081105/NEWS07/81105015/1006/RSS01

"Curtis Gans, director of the nonpartisan Committee for the Study of the American Electorate at American University and dean of turnout experts, said his early numbers show 2008 to be about equal to or better than 1964, but not higher than 1960. He said it looks like total votes, once absentees are tallied (which could take a day or so), will be "somewhere between 134 and 135 million." "
depp=true

Sour grapes are messy.... (Below threshold)
max:

Sour grapes are messy.

How long, DJV, before you f... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

How long, DJV, before you figure out that you cannot hijack a thread and launch personal attacks?

I've already admitted where I have been wrong. It seems to bother you that I have noted where I was right, and where the projections were incorrect.

I will take my lumps, provided you stay on topic and can manage to address facts. But while Jay has the big hammer, I do not have to let anyone hijack a thread or put up with a whiny self-absorbed Al Franken clone on my own thread.

"I will take my lumps, prov... (Below threshold)
DJV:

"I will take my lumps, provided you stay on topic and can manage to address facts."

Address the facts?

"Consider the next fact; turnout this year was down, not up. Down by more than five million votes from 2004. Somebody did not bother to vote this year. But who was it?"

This is not a fact.
depp=true

You can delete all of my po... (Below threshold)
DJV:

You can delete all of my posts. All it shows is that you can't handle legitimate criticism of things you call "facts" which are anything but. You took turnout numbers from mere hours after the election ended and thought they were the final turnout numbers. They're not. Anywhere from 12-15 million votes are yet to be counted. You do a disservice to your readers when you post complete nonsense.
depp=true

Odd. McCain loses but it's... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Odd. McCain loses but it's still the Left that is screaming mindless rants ...

What a ridiculously false c... (Below threshold)
Crusty Dem:

What a ridiculously false comparison, Ruth Bader Ginsburg's angry rebuttal to a ridiculous legal decision vs your temper tantrum over losing an election for which you foolishly predicted victory. Also, if you read your own link, you might find that the supreme court decision was required due to lawyers for George W Bush filing suit in federal court to stop a state-mandated recount, utilizing a federal court to alter state protocols clearly being a long-held conservative principle.

In any case, suck it up (as lefties have had to do for 8 years)! When Obama screws up, as he most certainly will, it'll be good to have a clear rational voice denouncing him. At the very least, let's all demand a lot more than we've gotten over the last 8 (or 16) years.

FWIW, vote counts via CNN:

2000 - 104 million
2004 - 122 million
2008 - 119 million with 3-4 million (??) more to be counted, final spread ~7% or 8,000,000 votes (assuming a larger spread than CNN currently has, since most votes lacking from national total are in CA, WA, and OR). I don't think we'll be anywhere near 130 or 133 million, unless there are 10 million ballots hidden somewhere that I'm missing..

Show me where I specificall... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Show me where I specifically predicted a McCain win, Crusty. Link and specific quote.

Good luck finding that, since it did not happen. My claim was that the polls were wrong, and I have gone into excruciating detail as to why I believed it, and still do.

But thanks for pointing out the obvious about the absentee ballots. And btw, if there really were 12 million more ballots to be counted, that would impact the entire election, and you'd have to back track on claiming Obama has won, just yet.

But that would be honesty, a thing unknown to most democrats these days.

Now now DJ, honesty is not ... (Below threshold)
JFO:

Now now DJ, honesty is not the exclusive province of either side and you know that.

I have to say i enjoyed your posts on the polls. Thanks for all that work.

CrustyGet over Flo... (Below threshold)
Larry:

Crusty

Get over Florida. You left out a word and the word is "Selective." It was NOT a state wide recount, it was only for a recount in "Selected" counties where the Dems thought they could find more Dem votes.

A newspaper consortium, and by now you should know how the traditional media goes things, recounted the whole state and guess what, Bush still won.

EVERY single credible or semi-credible independent or so-called independent source has said the same thing. Bush won, period.

Name one credible source that says otherwise, please.

Another interesting factoid and this one does NOT come from a credible source you would support, but one that I would; The only way to get a hanging chad is to punch multiple cards at the same time.

Well JFO, there I have to c... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Well JFO, there I have to confess you are right.

And thanks for your participation. I realize you took some noise for asking good questions on a conservative-leaning site, and I respect your courtesy and candor.

FWIW, this election is historic in a number of ways, and it will be fascinating - to me at least - to take apart the numbers to see how it came to be. It's easy for one side to assume that Obama was loved nationwide, but really it was brilliant strategy and a lot of hard work and focus. It looks like it came down, really, to Pennsylvania and Virginia. McCain went big for PA and lost there. Obama went big for VA and won there. And each of those efforts had effects on other states (Ohio, Florida, and N Carolina especially). I do not think people realize where the real surprises happened.

OK I'm a newb, why do peopl... (Below threshold)
suhnami:

OK I'm a newb, why do people post w/o vowels? Is there any reason for this? Sorry for the stupid off topic question.

DJ, my bad re: claiming you... (Below threshold)
Crusty Dem:

DJ, my bad re: claiming you predicted a McCain victory. I read your posts about how wrong the polls were and mixed up a post on another blog with one I thought you wrote. My apologies (still think the Ginsburg comparison is loony).

As for vote count, I wasn't being facetious, I really think the final turnout will be 123 million.

Larry, the recount results ... (Below threshold)
Crusty Dem:

Larry, the recount results depend on the "style", but in the full statewide recount, Gore won:

http://www.nytimes.com/images/2001/11/12/politics/recount/results/preset-v4.html

Ironically, Gore would've won a full state recount, but lost the "county-specific" recount his campaign requested.

That said, I object not to the outcome, but to the complete loss of due process on both sides (I do not absolve the Gore campaign). The whole thing was a complete farce, culminating in the worst supreme court decision since Plessy vs Ferguson.

suhami, when someone goes o... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

suhami, when someone goes out of bounds in a comment, that comment may be 'disenvowelled', all of its vowels taken out.

suhnami, if someone proves ... (Below threshold)
max:

suhnami, if someone proves DJ wrong he takes away their vowels because he is a petulant little child.
depp=true

The vote count will be high... (Below threshold)

The vote count will be higher than 2004. As of this posting only 97% of precincts have been counted and also as of this posting about 1.2 million votes to third party candidates have been counted.

According to Fox LINK the latest total vote tally is 120,558,064. If that number represents 97% of precincts then a simple extrapolation will give us a final number of about 124 million. That would be greater than 2004.

<a href="http://news.yahoo.... (Below threshold)

Here is a good article on the final turnout numbers.

According to the experts in the article between 126 and 133 million people cast votes for President.

Again Blue, "projects" is n... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Again Blue, "projects" is not fact.

Excellent job DJ.Int... (Below threshold)
MPR:

Excellent job DJ.
Interesting that every time Republicans get their feelings hurt they stay home. Usually means disaster for themselves and the country.

Funny that you have to go b... (Below threshold)
mantis:

Funny that you have to go back to October 21 polls to make your "point," ignoring two weeks of polling that followed.

Funny that you still don't admit you lied repeatedly about pollsters weighting by party ID (in some nefarious plot against Republicans, natch).

Funny that you don't revisit your "Poll offices are in eeevil liberal cities, therefore they are evil and liberal and wrong" theory.

Funny that when you look at the polls taken just before the election, many of them were very accurate on both the national and state levels. Nate Silver's projections at Fivethirtyeight were dead on.

Funny that you don't revisit your non-prediction predictions from November 3, especially these states which were a "lock" for McCain: Colorado, Indiana, New Hampshire, Ohio, and Virginia. Your percentage formula was total crap. Nate Silver's was outstanding.

Oh, by the way, the Gallup poll that you ridiculed and lied about several times, had final party ID numbers among likely voters that line right up with the CNN and AP exit poll numbers:

Among likely voters, the figures are 39%, 31% and 29%, respectively.

In essence, you threw around a bunch of ideas and theories over the past couple of months, and while you may have gotten a grasp of statistics in grad school, you still don't know jack about polling. The evidence for this, of course, is your insistence that pollsters are doing things they are not, and your insistence that historical party ID averages should be used to weight current party ID. Things change, DJ, and if pollsters relied on historical averages instead of trying to assess the current political state of the populace, they'd be more wrong than they usually are. Much more.

Obviously, you still think you are right in your analysis, as you claim here by dishonestly changing the rules:

I disagree, however, that this means the number of people who consider themselves democrats has risen to a 7-point advantage.

Not people, DJ. Voters. Democrats have a 7-point advantage right now with people who voted, and those are the only people that count, remember? The polls may not have all been right, but almost all of them correctly detected a change in the electorate, a change which you consistently denied was happening.

Most of your premises, assumptions, and definitely your conclusions, were wrong. Time to start from scratch. Well, you should have done that in the first place, but you started with the conclusion and worked backwards, now didn't you?

It's time to start looking at why Republicans lost, not trying to find ways to say that you didn't lose. Or don't, and see how it works out for you in two years.

So, I guess you don't belie... (Below threshold)
eric:

So, I guess you don't believe it's normal for poll results to change over time -- as they did?

Put another way: Why are you comparing the results to polls taken back in October, when you published your original screed? Why aren't you comparing them to polls taken, say, last week?

And do you actually understand the concept of "margin of error"?

How can you say, with a straight face, something like this: "For the polls to be accurate, here's how the undecideds would have to have broken from each poll..." Which implies that the undecideds will break in the same proportion as the polling numbers. Which in turn would be a really strange thing to assume. (Really, only an idiot would assume it.) So the fact that final results imply a disproportional break in the independent vote has nothing to do with the accuracy of the polls.

And finally, why aren't you mentioning the one poll that was most spectacularly wrong: The ones for Pennsylvania, where in the final analysis Obama appears to have won by a much larger margin than the polls predicted?

So, really, this whole thing smells like a massive exercise in rationalization to me. I'm disinclined to believe that you actually know what you're talking about.

Funny Mantis, that you have... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Funny Mantis, that you have to ignore the whole context of the post I made then, in order for you to attack it now.

I have not lied here. I could be wrong, and have been in some places, and I have admitted that. But you are lying in the comment you made, and you've done that before. I have not lied, and you know it.

Sad, that winning is not enough for you, that the slime and the attacks have to continue after the election is over.

Some day you may want to look in a mirror, mantis, and ask yourself just why you want to be that kind of person?




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