Here’s a thread to discuss returns, topics from the Geek’s Guide, and more.
It’s hard to rely on most states’ returns because partial returns are often so misleading. I’d watch New Hampshire (CNN) (where Obama should win by 11%, and closed an hour ago. It’s a homogeneous, small state, so there won’t be late surprises. If his margin’s between 9 and 13%, that’s in line with my projections. Less than 9% – nailbiter (<310 EV). More than 13% – massive, red-ceiling-smashing blowout (>370 EV).
I’m personally interested in Indiana because it’s on a knife edge. It doesn’t matter which way it falls – but they closed 1-2 hours ago and I am curious.
People are asking me what to look for. I have no idea since I am not in much doubt. I’d say I will be convinced as soon as I see NH. Doubters will want to wait until PA, maybe 8:30 pm or so?
8:30 pm: Okay, not yet. All those states being called – SC, etc.? Fuhgeddaboutit. Not of interest. That’s what exit polls are for – to give media organizations the ability to call blowouts early in the evening. Look for surprises, of which there haven’t been any yet.
9:15 pm: Returns are slow, but no discrepancies from my projection yet. President: A number of routine states have been called. McCain is leading in GA, IN. Obama’s up by 12% in NH but with only 20% reporting. Senate: Wow, Chambliss might clear 50% in Georgia. Not surprising, but there was some hope. Democrats’ ceiling is now 59 votes (counting the independents). I am on eggshells over Minnesota. Come on, Minnesotans, start counting!
9:19 pm: What the hell is happening in Virginia?
9:53 pm: Ohio for Obama. It’s done. There’s no path for McCain. He could win NV, CO, NM, VA, NC, FL – and Obama would still be at 279 EV. But that won’t happen. Congratulations, President-elect Obama!
10:00 pm: OK, meta-analysis victory dance over. I’m with Paul Starr, editor of the American Prospect. He has word from the Obama campaign that they are optimistic about Virginia and North Carolina, and think they have a good shot in Indiana. Things are looking good for Obama. Speaking as a geek, I’m still on eggshells – I want to know how the knife-edge states will fall.
10:20 pm: Obama’s leading by a whisker in VA (86% reporting) and NC (75% reporting). McCain’s ahead in IN (86% reporting), MO (21% reporting, so unclear still), and ND (33% reporting, but a 16-point lead there). If these trends all hold up, then it looks like I called all the states correctly. However, I wasn’t expecting VA to be so close. I’ll tell you about the secret tiebreaking sauce tomorrow.
Oh, and by the way: Bradley effect? Turnout? Cell phones? Anti-Bradley effect? Overall, their net effect might be…zero.
11:23 pm: Except maybe not North Carolina? 11:38 pm Wait…
4:44 am: Well, that was all very exciting. Overall, a great night for Barack Obama – and for the Meta-Analysis. Thanks, everyone – some wrapup in the morning.