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Where Things Stand

I try not to get into predictions, seeing as I argue so much that you cannot do that sort of thing accurately without the help of God, and while the Lord gives me many blessings for which I am grateful and try to note, I am pretty sure that foretelling the future is not in my package. However, I am still seeing a lot of talk about how we cannot win, or on the other hand how McCain is going to crush Obama, and I do have some information which could help put some perspective on those points.

Before I go into it, I will have to make clear that this projection is not based on any information not available to the public, and that the conclusions here - while I believe them to be sound - are my opinion of things right now, and there is a lot which could change between now and the end of the election (I use that phrase because early voting has begun in many places). It's intended to correct what I believe in an inaccurate portrayal of the election due to over-weighting of democrats in the state polls, and reweights those polls according to the actual participation from 2004 and 2006.

First, the states where Obama's lead is significant (10 points or greater), alphabetically:

Connecticut (19.71 pts)
District of Columbia (82.00 pts)
Delaware (14.84 pts)
Hawaii (35.86 pts)
Maine (10.00 pts)
Maryland (16.57 pts)
Massachusetts (14.285 pts)
Rhode Island (50.925 pts)

That's 7 states plus DC, for 47 EV for Obama. Now McCain's states where he has a 10 point lead or more:

Alabama (22.40 pts)
Alaska (25.73 pts)
Arizona (13.505 pts)
Arkansas (21.14 pts)
Georgia (14.34 pts)
Idaho (42.78 pts)
Indiana (12.28 pts)
Kansas (17.75 pts)
Kentucky (19.44 pts)
Louisiana (22.72 pts)
Mississippi (20.30 pts)
Montana (10.06 pts)
Nebraska (28.71 pts)
North Dakota (17.39 pts)
Oklahoma (36.81 pts)
South Carolina (11.42 pts)
South Dakota (22.02 pts)
Tennessee (25.39 pts)
Texas (25.305 pts)
Utah (49.475 pts)
Wyoming (48.14 pts)

That's 21 states for 169 EV for McCain. Moving now to states where Obama has a lead of 6.00 to 9.99 points, what I call 'double margin' leads:

California (9.98 pts)
Michigan (9.21 pts)
Minnesota (7.82 pts)
Oregon (7.44 pts)
Washington (6.315 pts)
Wisconsin (9.87 pts)

That's another 6 states for another 110 EV, bringing Obama up to 13 states plus DC and 157 EV. Now, the double-margin states for McCain:

Vermont (7.945 pts) yeah, I know that won't really happen, but that's what the numbers say

1 more state for 3 EV, bringing McCain's total up to 22 states and 172 EV. That brings us to the 'single margin' states, where Obama has at least a 3.41 point lead (outside the 3.4 percent MOE), but no more than a 5.99% lead:

Illinois (5.53 pts)
New Jersey (5.01 pts)
New Mexico (5.46 pts)
New York (4.785 pts) (surprised it's that close? I am)
Pennsylvania (5.785 pts)

That's 5 more states and 93 more EV for Obama, bringing him to 18 states plus DC and 240 EV. For McCain, he can add one more state to his tally as a single-margin state:

Ohio (4.380 pts)

That brings McCain's total up to 23 states and 192 EV.

The remaining 9 states are within the margin of error:

New Hampshire
North Carolina
West Virginia

There we are; McCain has five more states, but Obama has a 48-point electoral vote lead if things played out this way, with everything riding on how those last nine states are decided.

Playing a bit with the numbers, if McCain were to lose 5% of the support he has now, Iowa would move to clear Obama, Ohio would move to within the MOE, Virginia would move to clear Obama, creating a 260-172 Obama electoral lead. On the other hand, if McCain were to gain an additional 5% support, then Colorado would move to clear McCain, Florida would move to clear McCain, Illinois would move to within the MOE, Minnesota would move to within the MOE, Missouri would move to clear McCain, Nevada would move to clear McCain, New Hampshire would move to clear McCain, New Jersey would move to within the MOE, New Mexico would move to within the MOE, New York would move to within the MOE, North Carolina would move to clear McCain, Oregon would move to within the MOE, Pennsylvania would move to within the MOE, Virginia would move to clear McCain, Washington with move to within the MOE, and West Virginia would move to clear McCain, creating a 286-120 electoral advantage for McCain. As we have seen in past elections, a five-point movement in one week is very doable, so such movement in the remaining 18 days of this election must be considered well within the range of scenarios.


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Comments (57)

I say the Bradley effect al... (Below threshold)
Pretzel Logic:

I say the Bradley effect alone is worth 5 points, no?

Where are you getting your ... (Below threshold)

Where are you getting your polling from? Obama is up 25 points in New York, 24 in Vermont, 10 in NJ, 15 in California, and 17 in Illinois. Your post is interesting, but it seems you're just making things up. What a hack.

Hard to say, P.L. If you m... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Hard to say, P.L. If you mean what that phrase is usually meant to say, that 'a black candidate will lose support compared to polls because some folks cannot bring themselves to vote for a black candidate', then I would say Obama will see no loss due to that "effect"; I simply do not see race as a viable factor in this election.

That said, I do believe that the media has put a lot of pressure on people to publicly support Obama, which means that there are a number of voters who have told the polls they will vote for Obama because they feel pressured to say so, but who will vote for McCain. The real questions, though, are turnout (how many of those newly registered voters will actually vote, especially the young?) and the PUMAs. I personally think the PUMAs will vote for Obama, stay home and not vote, and vote for McCain in proportions of 55/25/20.

Good work DJ. I will post t... (Below threshold)

Good work DJ. I will post this over at Hot Air and MM for all the whiners that think it's over.The Obambi people have got to be worried with the Yahoo and Gallup poll numbers trending down for Obambi and up for McCain. I have to believe the Acorn scandals around the country are having an effect. Joe the plumber is resonating with Independents and undecideds. If the economy is helping Obambi it should have him way ahead at this time. He is not closing this thing up and now he is on the defensive. Obambi's people don't have to go back to far to see how Hillary beat him in the last major primaries. They are worried.

You know BDL, if you have b... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

You know BDL, if you have been reading my work up to now, you know exactly how those numbers show up. But you seem to be just a troll, instead.

My advice, if you really want to understand polls, is to look at the specific polls and dig into their internal data, especially their weighting. But it's so much easier to just toss off the topline and call anyone with a different opinion a 'hack', isn't it?

Yes, DJ, how dare you not u... (Below threshold)

Yes, DJ, how dare you not use the made-up numbers from an Obamuhhh supporter instead!

Why, in BDL's polls, Obamuhhh is eleventy-nine points ahead of McCain nationwide and even more in each individual state....

That's certainly reasonable... (Below threshold)
Pretzel Logic:

That's certainly reasonable DJ. I do believe there is an element of the Bradley effect. Mostly among white males over 55 that have voted for democrats their entire life. Plus, do you believe the hispanic vote has turned on McCain as much as the polls suggest?

Obama is running sca... (Below threshold)

Obama is running scared and for good reason. I suspect that his internals are telling him the same thing you are pointing out. This is why the get out the vote deal he has put together with ACORN and his own resources is so vital to his election prospects. The latest SCOTUS ruling didn't help McCain.

One interesting factor that seems to have little play is the number of disaffected prior members of one party or the other. I know of a number of people who style themselves as independents, but all of them belonged to either the Dems or the Repubs at one point in time save one, who has been independent all his life.

In past elections, when in doubt, I have seen the disaffected ones go to their roots. This time, it seems that they are not exactly thrilled with Obama mostly because of his attitude. They think he is "smarmy", whatever that means. To me, that means smirky and used car salesman. In the words of one local insurance guy, "I didn't go to Harvard, does that make me stupid?"

The question remains, how many independents are really, independent?

That depends on the state, ... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

That depends on the state, P.L. I think urbanized states will see alignment between blacks and hispanics because of liberal groups like La Raza and LULAC, an alliance of mutual interests. But in states where there is less such actions, then I see hispanics regarding Obama with much greater skepticism, especially as many hispanics are Roman Catholics, and do not like his Abortion stand at all.

btw, watch the Asians. They liked Obama in the primaries, but here in Houston a lot of them say they prefer McCain because of the experience question. They're a small demographic but they vote in blocks, and they will decide some of the more important counties, especially the Vietnamese and Chinese voters.

PretzelAt l... (Below threshold)


At least in this small town with a 40% Hispanic population, the natives are not restless. They are leaning McCain and talking Obama. If you ask them who they are going to vote for, they almost always say "Obama." If you ask why, they come back with something they don't like about him.

If you ask about McCain, they say he is a "War Hero." Now for a fact, that hauls a LOT of water in the Hispanic community.

From all that, plus the way that Hispanic females seldom tell you what they are really thinking (Palin for sure), I think that the Hispanic vote is still in flux and will be until they actually go in the booth.

Well, at least in Texas.

hmmm Wisconsin is 2% Asian,... (Below threshold)
Pretzel Logic:

hmmm Wisconsin is 2% Asian, 4.7% Hispanic and a whole bunch of those over 55 types!

Asians look at age and expe... (Below threshold)

Asians look at age and experience a lot different than our culture does. Our society says put the old guy out to pasture. Asian society puts age and wisdom ahead of youthful energy and impulsiveness.

I really respect your work ... (Below threshold)

I really respect your work DJ as I remember it from 2004 at the other site. My only question is Illinois: No poll I see shows it that close and it is Obama's home state? NY too surprises me...though I haven't been looking at those.

The "media effect" is an interesting concept...more than the Bradley effect. It's like a "peer pressure" to go Obama...but in the polling booth...no one has to bow to peer pressure. We will not know till Nov. 4th (or possibly the 5th) if there is a so called "Media Effect."

Like then the Japanese elec... (Below threshold)

Like then the Japanese elected a relatively young Elvis impersonator, MPR? Roh Moon Hyun wasn't as old as his opponent who he soundly defeated in the previous Korean election. Thaksin in Thailand wasn't all that old and he enjoyed a great deal of popular support even after the military ousted him for curruption.

Yes, most east Asian cultures do place a higher regard on respect for their elders than "Western" culture (as though that's a homogeneous thing itself), but whether that translates to politics is, I think, separate.

Generalizing about "Asians" means taking Indians, Koreans, Japanese, Chinese, Thai, Vietnamese, Indonesians &c. and saying "I think all these people will do x because of some shared psychological characteristics/predispositions (be they innate or acquired)." Some Japanese are what we would consider fascists, some are monarchists, some are social democrats. Some Koreans are capitalists of the American model, and some favour the European/Canadian way of doing things. I don't think any sort of generalization as to how these people vote can be taken as anything other than conjecture, unless examined at the most specific (re: statistically inconsequential) level, like a particular neighbourhood.

pol-junkie, Chicago is gett... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

pol-junkie, Chicago is getting really, really interesting. Yeah, it's strange that McCain should be close at all in Illinois, but there's some blue-collar backlash that turned Indiana around and has started moving some Illinois opinion. Like other states, I think the movement is temporary; Obama will no more lose Illinois than McCain will lose North Carolina, but I just report what the numbers show, and weird they are ...

hyperbolist, I said that the asians vote in blocks, and that's the key. The families get together and decide how they want to vote, then they meet their neighbors and reach a concensus, and so on as far as they want to go. The reason they do that, is because individually they do not get attention from politicians, but by voting as a block of several thousand at a time, it becomes important for a politician to seek them out. The key this year is that Obama has ignored them; they lined up pretty much with Hillary from the start - long, long story, but the Clintons saw this trend before anybody else, and they made some key connections - and the asians are feeling disrespected by Obama's people, a word with very big meaning to that culture.

Again, I am speaking about what I see here in Houston, but also what I see on the asian channels - I noticed about a month ago that the asian news ignore Palin and Biden, but they show Obama for a few seconds, then McCain for a couple minutes while they discuss their economic plans. Always the economics, by the way, and they discuss McCain's economic plans in detail, but gloss over Obama. My read is that this is a small demographic, but one worth watching.

One more thing - the older asians always vote, but never answer polls. They do not like talking to strangers on the phone, and prefer their phone calls in their native language.

one more thing. Hyper is r... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

one more thing. Hyper is right that there are many different kinds of asians, but politically the chinese, vietnamese, koreans, hong kongese, thais, and singaporeans tend to form coalitions for maximum influence as a group. The japanese, filipinos, and indians tend to vote independent of the other nationalities.

Note to self: Never play po... (Below threshold)

Note to self: Never play poker with DJ.


DJHispanic females... (Below threshold)


Hispanic females are like Asians. They don't like to talk to pollsters. And I get the sense, at least in this small, West Texas town, that this time, they ARE going to vote and I hear the Palin talk while lurking.

I also have heard at the truck repair shop, the car repair shop, the old goat hangout, the Dollar Store, etc., that the lower socio economic base is going to really turn out. And the vote is NOT for Obama. In fact, the rules of this forum don't allow me to repeat what I have been hearing.

In my opinion, there will be enough of a Bradley effect to almost cancel out vote theft and the overwhelming turnout of Blacks in spite of Jesse's efforts to turn it off. I am hearing both sides of that conversation.

I understand Obama has take... (Below threshold)

I understand Obama has taken out ad space in several Xbox games. In one racing game, as one drives around the track they'll see a billboard for Obama on it.

I play online games. I have been for many years. I've been playing DDO for a couple years now, as a matter of fact, and these people (all ages) aren't going for Obama. I can't repeat here what I've been hearing from these people either.

DJ, you know that I love st... (Below threshold)

DJ, you know that I love statistics as this was once part of my university education.

Where did your figures come from? Are they mainly your own personal predictions of the final vote outcome or based from some mathematical formula. I know that you love math issues because of your match ups of previous presidents in polls.

Just scientifically interested in understanding your methodology here, that's all.

DJ-I love that som... (Below threshold)


I love that someone is doing this... but a bunch of your data just looks... wrong.

It's not just Vermont, which is totally off.

The campaigns are both behaving as though Pennsylvania is a toss up -- you have it identical to New York, New Jersey, and Illinois, which neither campaign is treating as remotely "swing."

I understand the technique you want to apply, but I'm wondering if some of the cross-tabs are a bit misleadingly defined or something... it's not like the pollsters are releasing their raw data...

Pssst. Obama is a socialist... (Below threshold)

Pssst. Obama is a socialist, pass it on!

DJThe nine remaining... (Below threshold)

The nine remaining states within the margin of error in your analysis includes some stunners, such as NH and WV.

I would have thought NH was solidly Obama and I can't imagine WV going Obama, but then, I know nothing of statistical analysis and that's why I look forward to each of these posts.

One thought concerning the so called Bradley Effect.....I was trying to understand the details of an IBD poll yesterday and it showed a wide margin (10+) of white males voting for McCain in a national sample.

If I remember correctly, hasn't every successful presidential candidate had to have captured the majority of white male voters to win? (Warning trolls; this is strictly an informational query). If that is true, then my unscientific read is that this whole election will be determined by the turnout (or lack of) of a previously unsampled (or statistically irrelevant) demographic. Am I on the right track with this?

Dude, Nobody appreci... (Below threshold)

Nobody appreciates the love for MAC more than I. But how on Earth do you give McCain VT?? He's down by like 25 points.

Dude, Seriously. ... (Below threshold)


Seriously. I've re-read the blog and I must say your just blowing smoke.

Here is the deal or at least the straightest path:

1. He needs to win EITHER IA or CO.

2. Pick up every other Bush '04 state.

Now if he was able to p/u NH, that would help GREATLY. That way he could give up NM and still get to 270.

Anyone has an idea what is ... (Below threshold)

Anyone has an idea what is Islamic-Tambiko? I saw a book in Ebay "Barack Obama: The First US Muslim President?". In the contents it say Obama perform Isalmic-tambiko? Anyone knows about this?

DJ, I enjoy your poll analy... (Below threshold)

DJ, I enjoy your poll analyses. It does seem to give a lot of us some "HOPE" in the face of the incessant MSM propaganda. God may not have given you the gift of prophecy, but he did give you the gift of statistics and the tenacity to look in the data and see what is really going on. Keep up the good work!

Yea, Illinois is goi... (Below threshold)

Yea, Illinois is going Obama. Yet at the same time, Chicago knows him better than anywhere else. Daley will pull it out for him, but those who know him best basically say he is a two faced Hyde Park, left wing white liberal sell out.

Hugh, Clint, Fisher, please... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Hugh, Clint, Fisher, please read my disclaimer early in the post. There's a real tendency to fiddle with numbers that do not look right, especially when you hear things that strongly indicate the polls are missing the truth, but if I did that I would be playing fortune-teller, when what I am trying to do is translate the poll numbers into historically valid norms. And Fisher, if I wanted to "blow smoke" I'd spin a tale that was easier to sell. What I am doing here is working the numbers and keeping out any extra ingredients.

I will have a piece up tomorrow which goes a bit deeper into how I got these numbers, but the point here is that they are mot made up or tweaked in any way, quite the opposite - I reversed what the polls did, drove down to the starting information and then re-weighted using a combination of 2004 and 2006 actual participation numbers. After thinking about it, I think I know why some of the states are so weird with the reweights, but that's for tomorrow.

I originally intended this ... (Below threshold)

I originally intended this post at My Hispanic Family as a joke.
I literally copied wiki's page on Socialism and only did a search and replace on two words;
Socialism = Obama's Plan
Socialist = Liberal

But as I started reading it and it became effing scary.
It is pretty readable manifesto of what the Dems plan for us.

Obama's Plan for America



Look forward to the post to... (Below threshold)

Look forward to the post tomorrow DJ.

Coulter has an interesting ... (Below threshold)

Coulter has an interesting column today.

She went back to every election starting with 1976 and found significant errors favoring the Democrat candidate for every single one.

Well, except 2004.

Interesting. . .

Adams,I went to Eb... (Below threshold)


I went to Ebay, and I saw the book you are talking aboutv"Barack Obama: The first US Muslim President". And I was trying to search on the internet about Islamic-tambiko. Well, it looks like Vudu, I hope someone on the media will ask this question. We don't want Vudu in the White House

Time to start asking "<b... (Below threshold)

Time to start asking "Who is John Galt?"

It may be you...or me...or all of us.

But we're gonna need "him" soon...and I am very ready to be at least ONE 'John Galt'...though I suspect we will need several.

I'm already asking...

asians vote in blocks, a... (Below threshold)

asians vote in blocks, and that's the key.

That's interesting. I just returned from 2 weeks in Asia (Japan, Philippines, and Thailand). Overwhelmingly, I found that the people there were in favor of McCain. I didn't really think about it much until just now (I live in Utah, where I have seen only one Obama bumber sticker), but I think MPR is correct. The talk of McCain there was extremely respectful. In fact, one Thai woman referred to him as a "very wise man". Certainly this is anecdotal and may amount to little, but I sensed a distinct difference in the way the candidates are viewed, with a more favorable outlook towards a McCain presidency.

Justand:It's where... (Below threshold)


It's where is Galts Gulch. It's the ultimate
in being prepared and self sufficient. The
thing communists hate the most because of
the freedom and independence of these people.

Time to start asking "Wh... (Below threshold)

Time to start asking "Who is John Galt?"

I am also starting to hear more talk of an Atlas Shrugged scenario. I re-read the book this past summer and found some of the parallels very striking. I manage a small, family-owned company of about 100 employees. Because of my job function and my unique talents (strong sales and operations background with many Asian contacts), I am a highly compensated employee. I've actually been contemplating my 'next steps' since my 3-year contract is up in January. I've already informed my boss that should an Obama win occur, I wouldn't be excited about paying more taxes than I already am, and may be considering a less stressful vocation. It may be just the perfect time for me to cash in and embark on that 'whale watching' enterprise on the island. The government can fund all those social programs with OPM as I go on strike.

JustrandYou may al... (Below threshold)


You may already know this....
It was a topic on Helen Smith's blog (Dr. Helen) several days ago.

Lots of interesting comments. For what it's worth.

Hey DJ - I'd love to hear h... (Below threshold)

Hey DJ - I'd love to hear how you would factor in all the fake dem votes that seem well seeded this year.

The One +5?

Clay, IF Obama becomes Pres... (Below threshold)

Clay, IF Obama becomes President, then I will remove myself from the taxpayer rolls...and enter the "welfare" rolls. I will go from paying a LOT of money in Fed/State/Local taxes (trust me...a BIG number), to instead being a consumer of government funds and services.

My family and I will do with a lot less...but I will feel a LOT better about it.

I estimate my "switching sides" in the economy will cost the government a net $100,000 - $125,000 (or more). If enough folks like me do this, then "The One" will have a lot less to give out...and will need to apply the lash to the backs of those still working even more.

Will Atlas "shrug" then? Dunno.

HughS, I saw that thread on... (Below threshold)

HughS, I saw that thread on Dr. helen the other day...didn't get a chance to participate. I had already been thinking along those lines, and was encouraged that others were too (though sad to realize it is now becoming a neccessity)

Keep asking the question: "Who is john Galt?"

A month ago I would've said... (Below threshold)
Randy R:

A month ago I would've said that the Bradley effect was overrated and wouldn't have much impact. But since the Democrats, the media, and Obama supporters have been carpet bombing all opposition with accusations of racism I'm going to predict that the Bradley effect is going to be quite pronounced. A lot of people simply don't want to deal with being called a racist so will just shut up and vote for McCain in the privacy of the polling booth.

The story of the teenage girl who was called a racist for wearing a McCain/Palin shirt to school is an example of the kind atmosphere we're in right now. And if I'm right, the exit polling is going to be way out of whack, too, which may mean we might see a repeat of 2000 where the media called Florida for Gore based on the exit polling but had to retract that later as the votes were counted. Multiply that by a few states and all hell will break loose.

Atlas Shrugged is phenomena... (Below threshold)

Atlas Shrugged is phenomenal -- also seems to me a tragic might-have-been.

If Ayn Rand had only had the humility to find a really good editor and pare it down to half the length, this book could have done so much more.

DJ- I look forward to reading more detail. I only push because I care about this stuff, and won't believe it until I go off on my own and play with the numbers for a while.

Regardless of what the polls really are showing right now, I have a really good feeling about the next few weeks. McCain's a closer, Obama's not. For all that Rush talks about dragging McCain over the finish line, Obama's being dragged forward by all the major media outlets, ACORN voter fraud, speech-suppressing thugs, a phenomenal advertising blitz unlike anything our country has ever seen before.... and the polls are basically tied.

At some point, we're going to have to start giving John McCain credit for standing up to all of that, a country looking to give Democrats a turn, AND a major economic crisis. Even if he does lose, keeping it this close is a tribute to a phenomenally run campaign.

Good stuff DJ. For the com... (Below threshold)

Good stuff DJ. For the commenters on NH not being really close I have a question. Don't they split their EV's by congressional district?

Chris, ME and NH s... (Below threshold)


ME and NH split the EV. Actually, it is thought that McCain might have a shot at one of the EV's in ME. I don't know what kind of polling has been done on that possiblity, but that would really be interesting if McCain held all of Bush 2004 except NM, CO and IA and picked up NH from the Kerry states. That would give McCain EXACTLY 270 EV. Hoooooeyyy!!

Regarding VA which is at th... (Below threshold)

Regarding VA which is at the top of my list of states I am worried about: keep in mind Bush won this state by 8 percent in 2004. That is a pretty healthy margin. It is going to take a hell of a lot to switch that the Obama.

I try not to get ... (Below threshold)
I try not to get into predictions...
Haven't you already predicted a Republican win for President in 2008?

I also seem to recall a prediction that John McCain would never be the Republican nominee.

McCain should give up on Oh... (Below threshold)

McCain should give up on Ohio since the voter fraud there is so rampant and so brazen. Not worth the effort. Concentrate on states which ACORN hasn't infiltrated, at least not to such an extent.

Well Joe, the first thing y... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Well Joe, the first thing you should do, is find an adult and ask what the difference is between analysis and opinion.

Then we can talk, provided you can manage to stick to the topic, however doubtful that may appear from your comment here.

Predictions based on analys... (Below threshold)

Predictions based on analysis and predictions based on opinions are both still predictions. I'd like to hear the definition of "prediction" that you're using that doesn't encompass both of the statements I linked to. One of them, you even described as a prediction yourself. The other was a clear, unequivocal statement of what to expect in the future. Those aren't predictions?

Of course, as long as we're talking, let's talk about the last related discussion we had, about the likely outcome of Super Tuesday. I believe your opinion was that there would be no clear winner on the Republican side and that the most likely outcome for the Republican nomination was a brokered convention.

Also, let's discuss how your analysis for the 2006 elections panned out.

Talking about historical norms, your historical norm on these types of issues is to be wrong. As I said once before, if there's one thing that Democrats can believe in in 2008, it's that you predicted a Republican victory.

I also like the way you put... (Below threshold)

I also like the way you put in the "provided you can manage to stick to the topic" disclaimer. Is that preface to disemvowelling, as people who bring up points you are unable to address sometimes meet? I would think addressing the contention on the first line of your post and discussing how you have historically fared when trying to do similar analysis would be relevant to this topic, but I can understand why it would be easier to erase dissent rather than answer it. Atlas Shrugged is clearly much more relevant to this discussion.

Well, I see Mr. Yangtree is... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Well, I see Mr. Yangtree is giving me the Wurzelbacher treatment. In his comments here he has managed to prove beyond dispute that

A - I am a human being, not a medium of perfect knowledge
B - I have changed my mind in the past, and
C - He is either unable or unwilling to address the topic with anything like a relevant observation.

I would further note that Yangtree has managed to

A - ignore the posts where I explained my change of opinion about McCain, especially in the context of this particular election
B - ignore my very accurate observations in 2004, and
C - still fail to comprehend the difference between analysis of statistics and personal opinion, although anything from the New York Times or Newsweek has the same problem to a much more serious degree.

The one thing I can be sure of come November 5, Mister Yangtree, is that if you write any comments about me, they will be malicious and deceitful, as this seems to be your only mietre.

I am a human bein... (Below threshold)
I am a human being, not a medium of perfect knowledge
The point is not that you're human but that your predictions are worse than a coin flip. You have made examinations of polling data in the recent past, and they've led you to wrong conlcusions in every case. While you did certaintly do better in 2004 (wow you're right when the Republicans/Conservatives win and wrong when they lose -- how unexpected), you seem to continually fail to understand how fundamentals have changed in the world and the US since then. When you wrote your "The Base" article, you were very, very wrong when you were absolutely certain that McCain wouldn't be the nominee. Why? Because your ideaology blinded you to the reality of the situation. Your blindness was so complete that you couldn't recognize the changes even when they were being blared from every rooftop before Super Tuesday. I do think that's a relevant point when you're reaching anew to try and align the current polls with historical data into something you like better. I'm sure it helps you sleep at night, but I think it's as divorced from reality as your previous analysis. I guess we'll find out in a few short days.
I have changed my mind in the past
I hereby acknowledge your history of flip-flopping.
He is either unable or unwilling to address the topic with anything like a relevant observation.
Perhaps you missed, "I would think addressing the contention on the first line of your post and discussing how you have historically fared when trying to do similar analysis would be relevant to this topic." Please address why this isn't relevant information to your additional analysis.
ignore the posts where I explained my change of opinion about McCain, especially in the context of this particular election
It's true that you changed your mind about McCain's chances to win the nomination after reality proved you wrong. So, kudos in inhabiting the same reality that the rest of us do. Of course, you also changed your opinion about McCain, the man, but that's not what I addressed, obviously (please see flip-flopping ack above).
still fail to comprehend the difference between analysis of statistics and personal opinion, although anything from the New York Times or Newsweek has the same problem to a much more serious degree.
Is this your only response to my obvious proof of your predictions above? I thought I challenged you to present a definition where those weren't predictions. Still nothing, huh.
The one thing I can be sure of come November 5, Mister Yangtree, is that if you write any comments about me, they will be malicious and deceitful, as this seems to be your only mietre.
Deceit relies on deception, and I merely use your own previous posts on WizBang and your own blog to illustrate my points. I know that it's hard for you to confront them, but reminding others of them is hardly deceitful, and can only be taken as malicious if you're ashamed of them.

But hey, if McCain wins, I will gladly post a humble comment that you were right and I was wrong. Somehow, I doubt that you can say the same if the reverse is true. By reverse here, I mean that Obama wins in a race that is not close. I know that your current statistical analysis predicts a closer race than current polls, not necessarily a McCain victory.

Yangtree, you only prove th... (Below threshold)
DJ Drummond:

Yangtree, you only prove the saying:

When they can't dispute what you're saying, they'll attack you for saying it.

The readers here are smart enough to notice you have not once touched the topic of this thread.

"When they can't d... (Below threshold)
"When they can't dispute what you're saying, they'll attack you for saying it."

Wow, that's kind of like McCain calling Obama angry, isn't it. Let me repeat, I'm just repeating and highlighting what you have previously said. If you are embarrased that you ever said these things or made these predictions, I'm sorry, but you really can't blame me for them. I'm not disputing those things you said, but you sure seem to want to disown them badly.

But fine, since you can't answer my challenges, the least I can do is answer your's.

Of course, the most obvious problem with this article is your methodology. I did already mention this above, but your blindness probably also keeps you from drawing any kind of introspective conclusions, so, simply put, you have chosen to change the polls based on "historical norms" because you can't believe the weighting that all of the major polling firms have chosen to use, based on their own, separate polling of the electorate could be correct.

Then, when your new methodology comes up with truly unbelievable results, like Vermont being double the margin of error for McCain, you don't take this as evidence that your methodology is flawed and rethink it. You simply roll on ahead, even with the recognition that your methods are generating at least some clearly bogus results.

For New York, you say, "surprised it's that close? I am." Gee, I wonder if that's simply because it isn't even close to being that close.

Ignoring the states that you're clearly getting wrong with your analysis is producing something closer to a mental pathology report than valuable insight. But, like I said above, whatever helps you sleep at night.

A Troll Named Joe -<p... (Below threshold)

A Troll Named Joe -

Unfortunately, DJ's got a bit more credibility on this than you do. The poll that'll really count is on Nov. 4th - and all else is speculation and entertainment.

You, however, aren't particularly speculative or entertaining.

JLawson,We already... (Below threshold)


We already agree on a one thing, the poll that really counts is November 4th.

However, I naturally disagree on the credibility issue. Allow me to present my case in a few points:

1) "The Base" Article
Reading over this article now, with perfect 20/20 hindsight, it's premise was so wrong as to be totally laughable. The angry invective that DJ throws at the people who were actually correct, calling them "irrational malcontents", "spittle-flecked individuals", and "insane" makes it doubly so.

In the course of this post, he drew a few conclusions:

But it also needs to be noted, that Bush's 32% is a hard number. Except for those polls which heavily over-sample Democrats and Bookend states like Nyawk and Calforn, Bush never goes below that 32% level" -- The supposed hard number has evaporated significantly since then.

I will say plainly, that because they have chosen to personally savage the President, to abandon the GOP when their support would have made a difference, and to put their egos and image ahead of the nation's welfare, such candidates as John McCain, Tom Tancredo, and Sam Brownback will never gain the GOP nomination, and thank God for that. -- John McCain became the Republican nominee, a possibility that DJ assigned a 0% change to in this post.

I, on the other hand, in the comments, challenged his premises and conclusions. I pointed out that any Republican nominee would garner the support of his supposed base, since they could not vote for any Democratic possibility. This prediction proved prescient in the case of DJ Drummond himself, who reversed himself on McCain, and became a staunch, if reluctant supporter.

While DJ did respond briefly to my post, it was simply to state that he understood statistics and my post clearly showed that I had not. Naturally, I responded as well, stating that he did nothing to substantively address the many holes in his argument that I had pointed out. Also, I can now say that his understanding of statistics is clearly less than he believed than it was at the time, given how his projections played themselves out.

2) Not So Fast, McCain Article
Once again, DJ attempted to return to his ideologically based analysis of the Republican campaign. Since his last post, John McCain had gone from also-ran to front-runner and looked poised to close the deal on Super Tuesday. Here is DJ on McCain:

For all the hoo-dah in the media, the fact is that it takes 1,191 delegates to secure the nomination, and none of the candidates has even cleared a hundred in his tally yet. Seems McCain is real anxious that most of the country does not get a chance to say whether or not this chucklehead should carry the banner of the Republican party into the fall. I certainly understand why McCain would want to shut the doors now, but it's important we don't get fooled by his act.

Going to the comments, DJ made the following prediction:


It's fine for you to have an opinion that your boy McCain will claim 52% of the delegates. But again, the numbers point towards a brokered convention right now, so it's only reasonable to ask you to explain what you think will change the balance. Since McCain's poll numbers show he has not cleared 40% support, let alone 50%, and since so many of the primaries are NOT winner-take-all, and since the demographics show places where one particular significant GOP candidate is strong, claiming that McCain is going to break out and run away with the nomination is a bold claim which is not supported by the existing numbers.

My prediction in the same thread was:

Now let's talk about my predictions and the reasoning behind them. They're based on very simple, back-of-the-napkin calculations. One caveat is that I don't include West Virginia in my totals, so my totals/percentages are based on 1072 delegates awarded. I give winner-take-all New York(101), New Jersey(52), Arizona(53), Connecticut(30), Deleware(18), North Dakota(26), and Missouri(58) to McCain with Utah(36) and Montana(25) to Romney. That is a baseline of 338 delegates for McCain and 61 for Romney. Then, I divide the rest equally at 224 each. That gives McCain (338+224)/1072 = 52%, Romney (61+224) = 27% and Huckabee 21%. There is one unassigned delegate left over. Now let's see your counter-analysis, if you actually have any.

Naturally, DJ did not present any counter-analysis.

I added, "I guess we'll know in a few short days which one of us is engaging in wishful thinking, at least about Super Tuesday. You already won the first two wishful thinking rounds, but perhaps you can hit the trifecta." (The second wishful thinking round he had won was believing that Thompson and Giuliani still had a chance a few days earlier. I can elaborate more on that if you'd like, but I'll skip it for now.)

The actual totals on Super Tuesday were 511 for McCain, 176 for Romney, and 147 for Huckabee. Ron Paul got 10. DJ essentially conceded the nomination to McCain the day after Super Tuesday, three days after he had seen all signs pointing to a brokered convention.

3) Jumping back to this very thread, I had the temerity to point out, given the above, that DJ often made predictions, they just usually turned out to be wrong. He's never actually disputed this fact, and that would seem to be a relevant point when someone who has been so wrong in the past is going on again on shaky ground.

4) Given my analysis of DJ's work in this thread and his own comments, I assume that you believe that McCain winning Vermont is credible and that Obama ahead by less than 5% in New York is also credible. I have disputed this, and the basis for this analysis, but that is still pending, since Nov.4 isn't here yet.

So, there is my claim to credibility vs. DJ in a nutshell. I'm very anxious to hear your counter-argument about where I was wrong on these (or other) points and DJ was right. I do have a few more to add, but I'll save those for the rebuttal of your analysis.






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