Princeton Election Consortium

A first draft of electoral history. Since 2004

Senate and House final snapshots, 2014

November 4th, 2014, 1:54am by Sam Wang




Here are final polling snapshots for Senate races:
Put your own predictions in comments! Some more notes…

The calculations above will test the question of how well we can do with polls alone. As always, we did not do any house-effects corrections or fundamentals-based modeling. This is a polls-only snapshot.

Technical notes: The same methods were used as for the gubernatorial snapshots. The error bars are SEM of the polled demographic. To calculate win probability, I have incorporated an additional possible 2.5% error to account for polling error/bias. To see how many polls were used, see this spreadsheet.

House: Republicans win popular vote by 1.5 ± 2.0%, gain 8 ± 6 seats.

Please give your own predictions in comments. What surprises do you predict?

Tags: 2014 Election · Senate

91 Comments so far ↓

  • securecare

    Well I put this in the previous post by mistake.

    Senate 50-50, a constipated Congress.

    • Olav Grinde

      Ok, here goes: I predict that the Republican Party will retain control of the House of Representatives. The extensive gerrymandering the GOP carried out after their 2010 wave election has done irreparable harm to American democracy.

  • Joe

    I think the top 4 in the power rankings are going to shift D. Combined with NC and NH which are more than likely D, you get 50 plus Orman, not including GA and LA runoffs. Begich in AK has run a superior GOTV, and news today that early voting in AK has surpassed 2012 totals, matching almost 2008. AK is the surprise of the night…or rather tomorrow, or whenever. AK Blue.
    CO the same. Excellent articles today on early vote numbers in CO, but uncertainty looms with the new mail voting. Quinn put out a poll today that has me upbeat and optimistic in which Gardner had been up some unusual amounts like 6 and 7, down to a dead heat today. combined with a new system, and reports of Udall’s GOTV operations, CO Blue (barely)
    NC has seen a massive early vote effort by Dems and there’s no reason to suspect that momentum will stop there. This race has been close, but at this point it’s Hagan’s to lose. NC blue.
    NH is tight, but as with NC, This is Shaheen’s seat to lose as well. NH Blue.
    Then we get to IA, the only one of those 5 I’ll probably be wrong but hopefully won’t be about. The Braley camp is unusually optimistic about their chances, not a “we need to save face” type optimistic, but rather “watch us and learn” kind. Ernst is the favorite, so it’s hers to lose, but the polls there have all tightened as well, maybe at the right time. Pure toss-up to Blue.
    KS. If the power ranking is to be believed, then KS flips to I. If Orman makes good on his promise, and the above happens, then he’s D #51. That and it would really surprise me if he wins that he will reward the party that has spent 2 months and millions to destroy him with his votes.
    That leaves the rest, which will probably flip R or remain R. KY was close, but it seems that McConnell is putting it away, but that one may still surprise us. AR seems gone, as well as the expected flips MT, WV, SD. That leaves GA and LA. If what I predict happens and Sen control is already decided, I can tell you as a resident of GA that this will take a key talking point and campaign issue away from Perdue, so that could upset conventional wisdom that in a runoff he would be the favorite, though in a runoff he’s the favorite. Sad as it pains me to say that even though Nunn ran an almost flawless campaign, odds are that she comes up just short in a runoff. GA remains Red.
    LA is a pickle. Runoff almost guaranteed, but Landrieu is tough and has been in this spot before. Polls are all closing in runoff scenarios so this one is really up in the air.

    So after that long winded article there here’s mine:
    51-49 D.
    R’s Flip: MT, SD, WV, AR, LA
    R’s Hold: KY, GA
    D’s Flip: KS
    D’s Hold: AK, IA, CO, NC, NH.

    • Davey

      I’m on board with you, Joe…I just have Iowa going to Ernst. I’m fearful that I’m predicting this for psychological reasons. Maybe it’s because I have some sense of balance, and can’t see a government without an insane Bachmann replacement. Or maybe my inner child wants to see VP Biden make a show of constant tie-breaking votes. Whether psychology or math, I concur with your reasoning and step back slightly to 50/50.

    • Sherean

      With the power of incumbency and polls virtually tied in your D’s Hold states, I think your prediction has a lot of merit. Also, I just want you to be right, so there’s the potential for confirmation bias in my affirmation.

      I’m here in Georgia, too, and agree Perdue will probably carry it. Having said that, there is a LOT of energy and enthusiasm on the D side and early voting had 32% African Americans – which is about 2% more than most pollsters. I had a Republican pollster walk by my house Halloween (saw the Nunn signs) and said his side is worried that the polls were under-representing African Americans. That gave me *some* hope, but I’ve lived here long enough to be depressed about how red this state is. Seriously, we’re the state whose governor had a prayer group on the steps of the Capitol to pray for rain instead of – oh I dunno – calling a commission together to figure out how to plan for and manage droughts.

  • Davey

    Wow…four races basically tied. Two pretty uncertain on either side. And two almost certainly going for a Xerox copy of the exact same election.

    1. I love this election…craziness.
    2. With all due respect to pollsters, maybe we should have saved some money and allowed Mrs. Henderson’s 3rd graders predict this one. They work for cookies, and surprisingly there’s less name-calling with them than the adults.
    3. Does anyone else feel like we should have levied a 100% tax on campaign advertising, scooped in the $4 billion and built…I don’t know…a giant statue of Ronald Reagan shaking hands with JFK or something? Thirty second spots with a booming voice decrying the opposition and candidates surrounded by a gaggle of dogs are temporary…the ridiculous statue would at least offer something permanent in exchange for the divisive silliness.

  • Beihai

    A few months ago I had a dream that Dems would have a surge of late deciders (I read too much politics) and would hold at 52 to 48, it was just a dream and I know it means nothing but I have to throw it out there.
    Realistically I have to give it 51 Republicans to 49 or 48 Democrats. If Orman wins he would caucus with Republicans but be very independent in voting. I think Braley got off to a horrible start making fun of Grassley as being a farming non-Lawyer. That was a Coakley type gaffe (with the Red Sox).
    I have to think mail in voting will put Udall over the top, if Democrats there can’t be bothered to fill out a mail in ballot then I don’t know what to think.

  • Morzer

    I am going to say that the Democrats hold the Senate with a 52-48 majority, counting Independents who caucus with them. At least, that’s what the highly trained brigade of octopi and dart-flinging monkeys in my household predict.

  • Elithrion

    In the spirit of having a proper guessing game, I’m going put my faith in midterm polls being wildly off and call 52 D+I.

    And maybe a back-up guess of 44 D+I.

    Not that I think these are the most likely outcomes, but if you were to multiply their likelihood by how implausible they feel, you’d probably get something good =)

  • WDR

    Here’s my prediction: Senate control will not be determined on the 4th–Alaska will still be counting, someone will legally contest the results somewhere, or there will be a runoff in Georgia, or something. But R won’t have 51, and D won’t have 50, on Election Night.

  • wendy fleet

    I dare not predict in such august (november?) company, but from phoning, NC feels pretty darn good — Families upon families making *sure* they go vote 2gether;;
    NH — whew, *never* heard a good word about Scott Brown [“phony”/”empty suit”/”dope”] EXCEPT (frighteningly) from a guy who was all for Shaheen including “her very strong work for veterans” and all against Brown but for GUNS — that’s the wild card, shiver my timbers;;
    IA — Dems bemused by Joni Ernst — “it can’t be serious” — it’s bewildering that people take her seriously — am gobsmacked.
    CO — I’m counting on the putative under-polling of the Latino vote;

    . . . clearly Fat E aka Fate has an obsidian sense of humor . . .

  • J

    I wrote a couple weeks ago that I thought the Democrats would hold the Senate based in part of their GOTV efforts this year. I haven’t changed my position on this, but I’ve revised my views on a couple of the states, and think it will be close. Here are my predictions (not including the safe states).

    Democratic gains / holds:

    NH
    NC
    AK
    CO
    KS
    LA
    AR

    Tossups:

    IA
    GA

    Republican gains / holds

    MT
    WV
    KY
    SD

    On that math, that leaves the new Senate with 52 Democrats and 46 Republicans, with GA and IA being the two tossups, though I would take a guess that GA goes Republican in the runoff narrowly, and IA goes Democratic, albeit narrowly too, making it a 53-47 chamber.

    As for the House, admittedly I haven’t paid as much attention to this as I have the Senate, but I think it’s easy to say it will remain Republican held after tonight. The House Democrats, from what I have read, haven’t run particularly strong candidates in the districts they had a shot at, nor have they run good campaigns either. Throw in the gerrymandering, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they end up with the same numbers as they did back in 2010.

    • Davey

      Looking forward to see if your prediction comes true…it would confirm GOTV efforts as a battle tank, not a BB gun.

    • J

      Although I accept there’s a good probability I will be wrong, I sincerely hope I will be right (and not just for the reason that the Democrats win if that happens). It would prove that regardless of how much money that is spent on polling, advertising, and other scare tactics, an investment in a strong GOTV effort is what is required in any race to win (it would also confirm that GOTV efforts can’t be taken into account in polling). That for me would be the greatest outcome of all tonight – aside from the Democrats performing well in the Senate, Governorships, the state legislatures, and even the House.

  • Lois

    Sam, I know you have a great track record of predicting election outcomes and I admire your work. Forgive me, but this time I truly hope you are wrong about the Republicans taking control of the Senate.

    Thanks for your important work.

  • Canadian fan

    I really can’t put it anywhere better than Joe – an astonishing and persuasive analysis. I feel in tune that it will go the same way, and for the same reasons. I’m a little more optimistic than he is regarding Iowa, but there is no question in my mind that this will not only go down to the wire, but result in a recount. The other interesting thing about Joe’s analysis is that if it holds, then the Republicans would be consistent with a 30 year history of not being able to unseat more than two sitting senators in one cycle. In this case they would be Arkansas and Louisiana ( Although there is always hope. Louisiana in particular has been underestimated in my view ). I agree with Davey’s comment regarding Joe Biden – he would be thoroughly in his element as tie-breaking vote, and the joy of seeing that would be worth a 50-50 senate. But like Joe ( our commentator ) I think it will be Democrats 51-49.

  • A New Jersey Farmer

    Off to vote. Have a nice day everyone.

  • Jose

    African American and Latino voters are going to turn out in numbers higher than expected. They will make a difference in states where they are a significant minority.

  • shripathi

    52 R+I, 48 D.

  • Kansas Man

    50-50 tie

  • brian

    Senate Races
    Dems hold with AK, NH, NC (one of CO/IA)
    + flipping Kansas. The postmarked/unreturned ballots/rules will enable chaos for anyone that wants a winner tonight.

    We probably don’t find out who wins Colorado/Iowa/Alaska until later this week.

    LA/GA (go to run-offs).

  • Jay Sheckley

    Scared. Our ballots are ready to hand in.
    Begging others to vote. Perhaps someone can direct me to your latest fact-based prophesy. In August I gather it seemed we could keep the Senate, now it seems we cannot? Hats off to you, Sam. Keep fighting the truthseeking fight!

    • Jay Sheckley

      Ohh now I’m seeing your magazine articles. Other than McConnell, I have trouble with the list above. Perhaps the incumbents are clearly labeled; I dont see it, but presume most of those names in red are already in GOP hands.

  • brian

    Alasaka senate – Begich will hold because of 1( his strong organization 2(pot + min wage amendments 3( early voting second highest in history to 2008.

    Kansas/Iowa/Colorado/NC- could all end up 1 point races/ NH- likely to finish 2-3 points plus Dem.

  • Jay Sheckley

    Looking possible for Florida to lose their governor, so maybe my friends -two christian ladies who feed the poor kids- can marry after all after 15 years together

  • Matt

    So much wishful thinking! I haven’t seen this many people take the short side of a 2:1 bet since the last time I was in Atlantic City.

    Reps pick up SD, WV, MT by double digits. Dems keep VA, MI, and MN by wide enough margins that people will wonder why they ever thought it was close. R+3.

    Reps keep KY and pick up AR, and neither are close. Gardner wins CO by a surprising margin, too (Thanks, @NateCohn)–Dems are behind far enough that they need either a minor miracle or a quick annexation of Cook County to make up the difference. Tillis or Brown, possibly both, will make it close but have the state called against them late. They’ll have to console themselves with Iowa being called for Ernst in the early morning. When we wake up tomorrow morning, it’ll be 50 R, 46D.

    GA will be razor thin, but within a day or two it will become apparent that Perdue just narrowly avoided a runoff. AK won’t be known for a week or two, but Begich will pull it off with GOTV. Orman will announce in late November that due to the nastiness of Republican attacks against him, he will caucus with the Democrats anyway–worst case, it will give him 2 years of seniority in the D caucus when they take back the Senate in 2016. Louisiana will head for a runoff with Senate control in the balance, but Landrieu will not be able to overcome political gravity.

    R pickups: WV, SD, MT, AR, CO, IA, LA
    D pickups: KS
    New senate: 51 R, 49 D (46 + 3 I)

    • Edward G. Talbot

      Hey, surprisingly close to my prediction! I have Braley edging Ernst but IMO that is the closest race in the country and obviously could go either way.

      I have GA going to a runoff with Perdue winning a plurality, so that’s one other place we’re different.

      CO I agree seems gone unless the polls are systemically off AND the new mail-in stuff has significantly changed the ratio of who shows up on election day.

      It’ll be be curious if Orman does what you predict. Would also be interesting if King caucuses with whoever is in the majority, as he hinted at when he was elected.

    • Davey

      Matt – I think the Atlantic City comparison is bad because 1.) I think it fell into the sea financially and literally last summer, 2.) nobody disagrees about the table game odds.

      I don’t see predicting a slight Dem edge as “taking a short bet.” I see it as being first to the party in proclaiming Dem over performance persistent rather than random, and hypothesizing that GOTV efforts and other factors will lend the results to Dems once again over performing. Therefore, we’re taking the bet that the house stunk at calculating the odds and that the Royals shouldn’t actually be the favorites because they’re not as good as common wisdom says they are.

  • Diedealan

    Here is my prediction:
    There is a surprise out there. Maybe two. One of them will decide the Senate. Could be Kentucky, could be New Hampshire. And, that will only be surmised after the run offs and recounts. Those are for sure.

  • whirlaway

    I will just go with what is there on the top D:48 R:52

    After the elections, Obama will make all sorts of deals with Republicans – KXL, TPP, Federal judges and if it happens, SC nominations as well. And he will still get impeached by late 2015 or early 2016…

  • Phil

    50-50

    NH, NC, CO, KS, IA D
    AK, GA (runoff), LA(runoff), AR, KY R

  • The Live Toad

    Hoping for the best. Expecting the worst.
    D: NC, NH.
    I: KS.
    R: KY, AK, AR, IA, CO, GA, LA.
    The latter two in runoffs. So,
    52R/47D+I/Orman = 53R+I/47D+I,
    assuming Orman keeps his promise. Of course he has also promised not to support McConnell. We’ll see. The one irrational hope I cling to is that despite this grim outcome Lundgren Grimes pulls it out and so Mitch is denied the Majority Leadership anyway.

    • Jay Sheckley

      According to this article* for a Senate takeover Republicans need to win 9 of these races. Sam, your chart does not quite predict that. Factors unaccounted for: the wising up of the young about midterms’ importance, and the nationwide anti gay #IStandSunday rally held two days ago. There’s pushback on that. And of course Sam’s articles themselves. I’m going to say…. that the situation on capital hill is going to remain essentially unchanged.
      *http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/math-is-forbidding-for-democrats-in-struggle-for-senate/2014/11/03/9415379e-638c-11e4-836c-83bc4f26eb67_story.html

  • Andrew

    55R-45D. Both NH and NC go GOP due to higher enthusiasm and turnout of GOP voters. Senate control decided before midnight tonight.

  • Meater Maid

    Colorado is the only race I feel could surprise with the mail in ballot issue. In Iowa, Ernst has had a durable consistent lead. This is a midterm in the sixth year of a Presidency. The political gravity is too hard to over come. It is telling that the Republicans will not do better, a more popular party almost certainly would. On to 2016!

  • Froggy

    When all the dust clears, the Senate will be 52R, 46D, and 2I.

    An early look at some of tonight’s stories:
    1. The Comeback Old Guy. Pat Roberts wins another term in Kansas. Sam Brownback isn’t so lucky.
    2. Pork Chops Can Wait. Bruce Braley pulls out a squeaker (a squealer?) over Joni Ernst, even after a recount.
    3. First Round KO. No runoff in Georgia, as Dave Purdue and Nathan Deal both win outright.
    4. Down and Out in Beacon Hill. Martha Coakley becomes a two-time loser in her bid for higher office, never to make a third attempt. In a strange twist of fate, the same thing happens to Scott Brown on the very same night.
    5. Onward and Upward. Scott Walker wins reelection by 4%, and immediately begins planning a run for the White House.

  • Marisa Burnes

    I hope I’m not too late. Here are the final predictions from my model:

    Alaska
    Sullivan 56% chance of winning
    Begich 44% chance of winning

    Arkansas
    Cotton 86% chance of winning
    Pryor 14% chance of winning

    Colorado
    Gardner 77% chance of winning
    Udall 23% chance of winning

    Georgia
    Perdue 87% chance of winning
    Nunn 13% chance of winning

    Iowa
    Ernst 68% chance of winning
    Braley 32% chance of winning

    Kansas
    Roberts 37% chance of winning
    Orman 63% chance of winning

    Kentucky
    McConnell 95% chance of winning
    Grimes 5% chance of winning

    Louisiana
    Cassidy 95% chance of winning
    Landrieu 5% chance of winning

    Michigan
    Land 5% chance of winning
    Peters 95% chance of winning

    New Hampshire
    Brown 30% chance of winning
    Shaheen 70% chance of winning

    North Carolina
    Tillis 24% chance of winning
    Hagan 76% chance of winning

  • Dave James

    All so fascinating. I just can’t get past the history of previous results for 2 term presidents in their last mid-term. Not too scientific. I just can’t get past it.

  • Edward G. Talbot

    Looking at the spreadsheet, I am trying to figure out what criteria you used to determine how many/how far back to include polls. Kentucky says 6 polls, which according to huffpollster means you went back to the VCR poll that ended 10/21. Arkansas says 9 polls, which means you went back a couple weeks further on huffpo polls.

    In any case, Alaska is clearly the one with the most uncertainty and it’s the one I predict goes Democratic. Colorado feels like wishful thinking based on both the polling and the early voting numbers – I’m going with Gardner there. Colorado *is* difficult to poll, but if forced to choose, I’d take Gardner.

    Iowa seems like a true tossup. The early voting party ID numbers don’t bode well based on history, but the recent polls surprisingly show Braley winning early voters by good margins. If I were forced to place a bet, I’d bet that those polls are telling us that anti-Ernst voters are more motivated than we might think, and Braley pulls it out in a squeaker than certainly can’t be called until most of the votes are in.

    In Louisiana, Landrieu wins a narrow plurality and is behind the 8 ball for the runoff. That’s what all the polls suggest, and no reason to think they’re wrong. In Georgia, I think Perdue wins on election day by less than 3 – all the recent polls have been moving his way but early voting statistics are very good for Dems so I think it remains very close. And it goes to a runoff where I do think Nunn has some chance.

    I don’t see Kentucky as being close. I see Dems narrowly holding NC and NH, though NH seems more likely to surprise than NC, given how well NC early voting has gone. It’s a great day here in the northeast, so turnout should be good in NH, but NH tends to be more anti-establishment than your average bear.

    If all these predictions are correct, Orman decides the balance of power. I certainly wouldn’t be surprised to see losses in AK or IA or NH or NC but I would be surprised to see all of them lost. This does not feel like an election where everything is going to go one way. Which is not to say the polls won’t turn out to be off by 2-3% in one direction in close races on average (as they have been in past midterms), but I suspect that even if they are, two or three key races will be decided by the fact that they are NOT off by that amount in that direction. And that potentially makes for a different narrative, one which could cut either way.

  • Insidious Pall

    Mine is a minority forecast but I’m considering the separation I’ve seen in recent days in the polls. Nunn is losing ground, Cotton and Gardner are pulling away, and Ernst is likely in IA, although that is one place the GOTV effot can be critical. NH and NC have both tightened dramatically. It tells me late deciders are breaking red. So R-54, D-45, I-1. These totals assume both King and Orman caucus red.

  • Marisa Burnes

    Here is a link to my final predictions for the US Senate race:

    http://sanityiid.blogspot.com/2014/11/us-senate-final-update.html

    It includes all the graphs and charts.

  • JayBoy2k

    Now is my chance to let knowledge of special conditions or personal hope override the data and a consistent agreement by poll aggregators. Hmmm. Sam, and Nate, and Drew go one way and I am going to go another. Given all the discussions about polls, GOTV, midterm bias, I think that the most likely changes are Alaska goes D because of potential NEW voters and Kansas goes R because after all is said and done, those are Republicans voting.

    The end result is still 52R, 48D+I

  • Amitabh Lath

    Just voted. Seemed busy, but that may be a local effect based on hotly contested school board contest in my town. But hopefully turnout is big.

    I admit this election has been a lot more fun than either of the previous presidential races which were well settled and the only question was the EV margin of victory.

    The closeness of this election has thrown the underlying uncertainties of the polls into sharp relief. We will see if polls as they are conducted now have sufficient resolution when the electorate is so evenly divided.

  • Neil

    My predictions based on research, hunches, and wishful thinking:

    D/I : NC, NH, CO, AK, IA, KS
    R: KY, AR, GA, LA

    Total: 51D -49R

    Reasoning: In NC early voting numbers were up 20% over 2010 , particularly in urban areas. Mecklenburg County, which contains Charlotte, is up 39% alone. Turnout will be better nationwide than in previous midterms. This will favor Democrats.

  • Bruce Sands

    Hi

    Thought I would toss my own 2 cents into the predictions; I hope it isn’t wishful thinking.

    Alaska – 100% D – rationale= mostly GOTV + Dem do better + bad polling + original Alaskans are mobilized

    North Carolina – 100% D – rationale = Dem do better in midterms than the polls say + GOTV + small lead in polls

    Georgia – 90% D for the election, no runoff – Dems do better than the polls suggest + GOTV

    Louisiana – 100% R, no runoff – too red for now

    Arkansas – 100% R – still very red for now, interesting to see if there is a Clinton effect

    New Hampshire – 100% D – rationale = Dems do better than the polls suggest (although not so much here, plus GOTV) + small lead in polls

    Colorado – 100% D – rationale – Dems do better than the polls suggest, GOTV, Hispanic vote isn’t polled correctly

    Kansas – 50% – Jeez, I don’t know, Dem party is resurgent here though, they have a great state chair

    Kentucky – 90% R – Rationale – too red for now

    Iowa – 90% D – Dems do better than polls suggest plus GOTV

  • pgvaidya

    Sam,

    Talking about the running Brier score, I have been wondering why the polls have drifted towards republicans. Is it possible that in this election Citizens United is in full force and it is bending the arc of polls in that direction?

  • John F

    Senate:
    GOP 51
    DEM 49

    House: Dems gain 3 seats (each side has unanticipated incumbent losses)

    Governors: Dems gain 2

    Election post-mortem: Analysts will see more of an anti-incumbent ripple than any pro or anti Dem/GOP wave, nevertheless Conservatives will misread the results as being a pro GOP wave (they will have a majority of both Federal Houses and of state governorships) and will seek confrontation with Obama- even more aggressively than in the past.

  • Andrew G

    Overtime. Extra-innings. Free baseball as they used to say. But it won’t be free, if you live in GA or LA. The amounts to be spent on 30 second spots will approach the GDP of some small nations.
    So with GA and LA off the table today (or tonight or tomorrow morning), Dems win in NC and NH, Orman wins in KS. Udall surprises in CO as University of Washington Professor Matt Baretto’s Latino polling analysis explaining how the public polling again missed the Latino vote in CO proves to be the difference. AK is too close to call for several days. Ultimately, Begich loses. Ernst wins in Iowa, but barely (or is that Braley) and Anne Seltzer is no longer considered a polling genius as she misses the final margin by 5 points. So control of the Senate comes down to a December run-off in LA and a January runoff in GA. Press the reset button and deal with those 2 races after the dust settles, but at least Harry Reid’s still has a chance (albeit a rather small one) to stay as Majority Leader.

  • Randy Haugen

    Senate =GOP 54

    DEMs = 46

    Gov Dems pick up one seat.

  • Randy

    My Predictions:

    Senate Races
    Kentucky REP
    Arkansas REP
    Louisiana REP Run Off Election Required
    Georgia DEM Run Off Election Required
    Colorado DEM
    Alaska DEM
    Iowa DEM
    Kansas IND
    North Carolina DEM
    New HampshireDEM
    Minnesota DEM
    Virginia DEM

  • CaliDreaming

    I agree totally with Joe’s analysis above. Dems will hold the Senate 51-49.

    My big prediction is that the GA Senate race will be the one that all the pollsters get wrong and nobody saw coming. Not so much on the ultimate outcome, but on the margins of victory and how it all plays out.

    I believe the latest polls in GA are failing to account for the massive demographic changes in GA, a stellar GOTV effort by Dems in the state, and voter apathy among white Republicans who are unhappy with the Republican candidates this year.

    In all of the latest polls showing a Perdue lead, assumptions are being made based on voting patterns in 2008, 2010 and 2012 that are clearly not holding in 2014. I am in awe of the Democratic GOTV effort in this state and hope that the Dems have broken their midterm curse. Early voting among blacks in particular is looking more like 2008 and 2012 than a typical midterm year. An astonishing percentage of early voters are newly registered voters and voters who did not vote in the 2010 midterms. I am a longtime resident of the state and I have seen nothing like this before. For these reasons, I think the pollsters are not able to accurately gauge the true state of things in GA.

    I think after tonight’s results are counted, Nunn will be in the lead and close to 50%. She probably has a legitimate shot at winning it outright, but because this is such uncharted territory for GA, I am not willing to go out on a limb to predict that. I do concede that Perdue probably has the edge in a runoff, but still–uncharted territory. In other runoffs, I would have felt comfortable writing a Dem candidate off for dead. This time, I’m not so sure.

    What you are seeing in GA is the death of a red state in real time. In 2016, prepare for GA to be a true battleground state.

    • Micheal Allison

      Cogent analysis. Also Moral Monday has come from NC to GA and the motivation to be involved.

  • Donny

    The Grimes campaign claims internal polling still shows it a tie in KY. I don’t know if this is political spin or the truth. I will say Grimes’ rallies were MUCH more crowded than Mitch’s. If McConnell loses, that will be the upset of the night for sure!

    • John F

      If there is any gneralized anti-incumbent wave at all, McConnell will be toast, that’s pretty much Grimes only chance

    • CaliDreaming

      I have all but written off Grimes, but accounts like this do give me pause. McConnell IS acting pretty desperate for a candidate who is supposedly eight points ahead in the polls. Grimes is campaigning like a woman who actually believes she has a shot at winning.

      I’m still not sure if she has a legitimate shot, but I think it’s safe to say that the race is closer than the polls suggest.

  • Tom

    Dems wins in Nh, Nc,Col, Ia,Al,Ks
    GOP wins in Ar, Ky,
    Runoff in Ga, La
    Surprise upset in SD or Ne

  • Andrew G

    Michael McDonald @ElectProject · 23s 23 seconds ago
    If AK, CO, IA & NC very close, we may have to sit tight for a few days before media confident uncounted ballots don’t change outcome.

  • Rick

    AK: Begich (D) (R) 0.9 pts
    CO: Udall (D) (R) 1.0 pts
    GA: Open (R) (R) 1.5 pts
    IA: Open (D) (R) 0.8 pts
    KS: Roberts (R) (I) 2.3 pts
    LA: Landrieu (D) (R) 3.3 pts
    NH: Shaheen (D) (D) 2.3 pts
    NC: Hagan (D) (D) 2.5 pts

    • Carter

      I guess the Landrieu and Hagan results are pre-runoff? Roberts is an interesting prediction, though I think that he will pick up some points from straight ticket Democrats and a Republican GOTV infrastructure that is more established.

    • Sam Wang

      PEC uses the 2-way match between Landrieu and Cassidy, i.e. the post-election runoff result. There is no requirement for a runoff in NC.

  • Long

    If the same model was used to correctly predict the 10/10 races in 2012 then we can only assume that the prediction for 2014 will reflect as what shown above, 52R and 48D. However, unless Dr. Wang is willing to take back seat this year and pull a Nate Silver of 2012 where he missed 2 races, then we could be looking at a 50D/50R Senate.

    • John F

      He went 10/10 because even though several races were”off” by 1-4 points, none swung the vote- someone was leading in the polls by 4 and won by 1, some other guy was leading by 4 and won by 7, etc.

      At a certain level that’s just luck.

  • Michael K

    I predict protracted recount battles in 2 or more of the 5 closest races (CO, AK, IO, KS, NC). Leaving control of the Senate undecided for weeks, possibly months (especially factoring in the likelihood of runoffs in LA and GA).

    • Carter

      I agree. Three races (NH, NC, KS) are less than a percentage point in the RCP average with momentum swinging to the one running behind in all but Kansas. No way we know by the end of the night on all three of these. IA and CO are also close, but less so. I think we will know Alaska quickly either way, but that is just a guess.

  • Matt McIrvin

    I predict some surprises but it’s impossible to predict where, so in any given race I predict no surprise.

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