On Politics & Polls (SoundCloud, PodOmatic, and iTunes): Julian Zelizer and I chew over three pivotal moments in Campaign 2016. Also, I finger what I think is one remaining big moment. Hint: rhymes with Mouse of Mepresentatives. Listen now!
August 25th, 2016, 5:00pm by Sam Wang
Comments OffTags: 2016 Election
August 24th, 2016, 10:00am by Sam Wang
Comments on my sharpening of the Presidential forecast were helpful. The outcome is that I will keep the key new assumption, which is to cap future standard deviation in the Meta-Margin at 3.0%. Since Hillary Clinton’s Meta-Margin (effective popular lead, measured through Electoral College mechanisms) is 6.3%, that means that she is 2.1 standard deviations ahead. That is a lot of standard deviations.
A summary of the discussion follows. I will start with the key graph, which I produced in response to Joel. Like all my analysis of the 1952-2012 elections, this was made using Wlezien and Erikson’s data. Prof. Wlezien has helpfully provided the original dataset on his website.
[Read more →]
August 21st, 2016, 2:47am by Sam Wang
Today I present a beta version of the sharpened forecast. In May, I said that I would update the model after the dynamics of this year’s race became clear. Back then, I wondered whether the 2016 campaign would be more like 1952-1992 (high variability), or like 1996-2012 (low variability). This year’s data indicate that it is the latter – opinion is relatively stable. That stability affects the November forecast.
This is an open comment period. Technical feedback is welcome. (The comments section is rather good this time.) [Read more →]
August 18th, 2016, 9:36pm by Sam Wang
On Politics & Polls (SoundCloud, PodOmatic, and the slower-to-update iTunes): Julian Zelizer and I offer up a basic primer on how to make sense of the onslaught of polls. What should we think of a really surprising result? Are polling numbers twisting and turning with every week’s news…or are polls the best empirical measure we can count on in a crazy year? Want to learn a trick for aggregating polls that is so simple that it does not even involve arithmetic? All this and more…listen now!
August 18th, 2016, 8:00am by Sam Wang
Here at PEC, the likely range of electoral votes is set by assuming that opinion can drift in either direction, by an equal amount across states; and then converting that swing into electoral votes. This generates the red “strike zone” in the plots in the right sidebar. Today I make a small update. [Read more →]
August 16th, 2016, 5:41pm by Sam Wang
There is a lot of media drooling over polls showing Donald Trump cratering in state after state. I find this gloating to be unseemly. Here at PEC, you can do all your gloating in one go, saving time for other reactions, like schadenfreude.
Plotted below are median Clinton-minus-Trump margins in all states for which August polling is available, plotted against Obama-over-Romney margins at the same point in the 2012 campaign. This horizontal axis quantity is better to plot than the final Obama-Romney election margins, which include undecided voters’ final commitments – not a fair comparison.
The data come from RealClearPolitics.
Clinton is overperforming Obama in 15 out of 17 states, the significant exceptions [Read more →]
August 16th, 2016, 10:43am by Sam Wang
Find out in a profile published yesterday on the University’s homepage. Bonus: it may be the only time you will ever find the cerebellum and gerrymandering mentioned in the same article.
August 15th, 2016, 8:15am by Sam Wang
Game Theory Sunday. Today: Why is Evan McMullin running for President?
1) who is he? High-level House GOP staffer: https://t.co/zCxblD9AGo
— Sam Wang (@SamWangPhD) August 14, 2016
Today on The Takeaway, I discuss the impact of Evan McMullin’s entry into the Presidential race. His biggest effect will be downticket, where control of Congress is in the balance. The basic evidence: McMullin is a House GOP staffer, not a politician; and for every 1% of Republican turnout that he can salvage, they can recover up to six House seats – which could be crucial in determining control. As of this weekend, McMullin will be on the ballot in Colorado and Minnesota, where six swing districts are on the line (CO-03, CO-06, MN-01, MN-02, MN-03, and MN-08).
August 13th, 2016, 8:00am by Sam Wang
The Princeton Election Consortium is partnering with StatX to bring to you a way to get our data updates automatically. The StatX app can provide you with all the key outputs on our calculations, updated five times a day: the EV snapshot, current Senate and House estimates, and the Meta-Margins. The app will link back to this website so you can get full site content.
You will need the free StatX app on your iPhone or Android (or search statx in Apple App Store or Google Play Store). Give it a try! Send any StatX-related suggestions and feedback to firstname.lastname@example.org. Below, some answers regarding privacy concerns… [Read more →]
August 12th, 2016, 12:09pm by Sam Wang
I am trying out a new rounding rule on the Clinton win probability. Now rounding it to nearest 1%, not 5%. Gives you something to look at – along with the big jump in the Meta-Margin.
For the generic Congressional preference, the displayed threshold for flipping the House is now set to Democrats +6% to +8%. That estimate is fairly rough, as detailed below. I am also experimenting with the graph format. It displays every Nth day of the median. Before, N=7; now I am trying N=3.