November 2, 2016

"Whenever the race tightens, we get people protesting that the popular vote doesn’t matter because it’s all about the Electoral College, and that Trump has no path to 270 electoral votes."

Says Nate Silver.
But this presumes that the states behave independently from national trends, when in fact they tend to move in tandem. We had a good illustration of this in mid-September, when in the midst of a tight race overall, about half of swing state polls showed Clinton trailing Trump, including several polls in Colorado, which would have broken Clinton’s firewall.

This time around, we haven’t seen too many of those polls in Clinton’s firewall states, such as Colorado, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Michigan. But that’s misleading, because we haven’t seen many high-quality polls from those states, period! We have seen lots of polls from North Carolina and Florida — for some reason, they get polled far more than any other states — and plenty of them have shown Trump gaining ground, to the point that both states are pure toss-ups right now.

So, should you expect to see polls showing Clinton behind in states like Colorado and Wisconsin?....

37 comments:

MikeR said...

More Wikileaks, please!

mikee said...

Polls are used to influence public opinion, so ignoring the polls to focus on other things, such as political policies, past histories, or personal corruption of the candidates is a much more productive enterprise if you want to know what either of them might do as a president.

Gahrie said...

Someone needs to start a campaign to convince the electors not to vote for either one of these turds in the Electoral College. After all, that is why it was invented in the first place, to fix things when the American voter fucks up.

It is not really the voters' fault this time, but the Electoral College can still fix things.

We could still end up with President Romney.

Brando said...

Silver's right--the swing states generally track the national vote, so when we don't have up to date info on the swing states the national vote makes a useful guide. That said, we are looking at a close election, so it is more likely than usual that if the popular vote margin is small (e.g., less than 2%) we could see the popular vote winner losing the electoral vote.

And the polls themselves could be missing something in their calculations, and give us some election day surprises. All this is tea leaf reading right now.

Yancey Ward said...

The latest Podesta dump from Wikileaks had this from Peter Kadzik, the very man Loretta Lynch put in charge of the new e-mail investigation at the DoJ:

http://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/images/user230519/imageroot/2016/11/02/2016.11.02%20-%20Kadzik.jpg

In the e-mail to Podesta, sent via Kadzik's personal e-mail account, we have Kadzik giving a literal "heads-up" to Podesta about testimony from the DoJ, where Kadzik works, to the House Judiciary Committee. He also lets Podesta know that another FOIA request has hit, but that it would be 2016 (the e-mail is from May 2015) before the State Department would release any Clinton e-mails.

Ladies and Gentlemen- this is corruption, like it or not. If I were the House Judiciary Committee, my first act this morning would be to subpoena all of Podesta and Kadzik's private e-mail accounts.

Brando said...

"Someone needs to start a campaign to convince the electors not to vote for either one of these turds in the Electoral College. After all, that is why it was invented in the first place, to fix things when the American voter fucks up."

The voters deserve these turds. Like it or not (and I don't) the primary voters have spoken, and decided this is the best we can do.

eric said...

I'm going to make a prediction.

Even though I've not heard a single person say this yet, theyll all be saying this if Trump wins.

The polls were wrong because they couldn't account for his celebrity status.

Now, it's possible that they'll come up with another clever excuse. Hidden Trump voters. Turn out just didn't happen for Clinton. Whatever.

The point is, theyll all glom onto the same theory and pretend it's true. This way, we will trust them come the next election.

wildswan said...

If the race tightens still more Trump will probably win and the win will come from Wisconsin and Michigan. The race is tightening. That's what the article says. These days polls only tell us where we are today; they used to predict outcomes. Polls - another business that must change.

Oso Negro said...

I expect the polls to say whatever is in the best interest of the Democratic Party. Their secondary concern is to maintain a veneer of respectability so people will swallow their horseshit next time around.

shiloh said...

When Nate posts anything positive er red meat for Trump supporters, Althouse pounces!

btw, Hillary does not need OH/NC/FL/NV/IA to reach 270 ~ Keep hope alive!

Oso Negro said...

Yancey Ward said
Ladies and Gentlemen- this is corruption, like it or not. If I were the House Judiciary Committee, my first act this morning would be to subpoena all of Podesta and Kadzik's private e-mail accounts.


You are probably one of those bitter clinger types. A homophobe and certainly a racist. Enjoy your tax audit peasant. Althouse still yearns for Obama.

Rob McLean said...

It's the arrogance of folks like Shiloh that makes people think, "Screw it, I'm voting for Trump, just to shut this guy up."

mccullough said...

The race must be tightening because Trump is campaigning in normal mode the last few days. His tone and substance are pretty good.

Jack Wayne said...

The beauty of a Trump win is that he will owe nothing to anyone. He will be a free agent President. I've never seen one in my lifetime so we are entering new territory. I expect gridlock in DC like we've never seen before. I expect that Trump will appeal to the people frequently to put pressure on their reps. I have no idea if that will work or not.

Yancey Ward said...

You can probably learn more about what the true state of the election by watching where the candidates go. They both get polling data they keep private to the individual campaigns, and believe me, a good campaign won't want to fool itself.

So, if Trump is campaigning in blue states, his internal polling is giving him reason to believe he can win them. If Clinton is campaigning in Michigan, internal polling is telling her she can lose it.

And Silver is correct- the states aren't too independent of the national vote. Again, that is why I think Trump wins Virginia if he wins both the popular vote and electoral college. The pick of Kaine makes that prediction less tenable in one sense, but I remind people that Al Gore lost Tennessee even running on the top of the ticket in 2000. I am not convinced Kaine actually helps Clinton in VA by more than a percent or two.

States have natural leanings that don't change much from one election to the next, so here is what you have from 2012 where Obama beat Romney in the national vote by 3.9% (compare this number to the margins in the states from the same election:

VA- Obama won by 3.9%
FL- Obama won by 0.9%
OH- Obama won by 3.0%
NC- Obama lost by 2.0%
AR- Obama lost by 9.0%

However, Obama was bit of Democratic outlier in that he over-performed expectations in both 2008 and 2012 in a number of states that have a Republican lean (he won Indiana in 2008!)- this is caused, in part, by the extraordinary turnout African American votes. And, I think a lot of people were still voting for him in 2012 just because they voted for him in 2008 when he won a near landslide popularly.

My guess is this- VA and OH still lean a little towards the red, though Democrats have closed that gap in the last three elections, not just the last two. If Trump can win the popular vote by 2%, he is likely to win the electoral college. I do think the Democratic candidate has a bit of an electoral edge overall.

Achilles said...

Blogger Gahrie said...

We could still end up with President Romney.

I voted for Romney. But if you think more people would vote for Romney than Trump you are an idiot. Trump had far more competition and blew Romney's vote totals in the primary out of the water.

Romney would not fix any of the real problems. He passed Obamacare before Obamacare was cool for fucks sake. Romney would increase the debt and spending every year and would probably give us at least 3 more federal agencies. Romney was obviously aloof and viewed himself above everyone else. He depressed republican turnout massively.

If this happens Romney will not finish his term. The government would be brought down by both sides.

Xmas said...

Colorado is the firewall state for Hillary. If she loses CO, she can lose the election.

For Trump, he has to win Florida. If he loses Florida, the election is over for him. I guess this is good for us, since the Florida results will start coming out after 8 PM EST.

The Pennsylvania results will also be coming in after 8 PM EST. If that goes for Trump, it'll be a sign of a rout.

If FL goes Hillary and PA goes Trump, then we are in some sort of weird Twilight Zone election day and all bets are off. SMOD will probably be the winner by Wednesday morning.

shiloh said...

"However, Obama was bit of Democratic outlier in that he over-performed expectations in both 2008 and 2012 in a number of states that have a Republican lean (he won Indiana in 2008!)- this is caused, in part, by the extraordinary turnout African American votes."

YW's continued gobbledygook minutiae notwithstanding, Obama won Indiana because he had 44 field offices in the state and McCain had none.

And VA is no longer a southern state as N. VA has had an influx of "Dem" voters the past (20) years. Which is why NC is now competitive also ie northerners moving south.

Howard said...

Props to the rethuglickins for not pitching a hissy fit over the erectoral collage like the demoncraps did in 2000. It's a feature that makes fly-over country relevant. Otherwise, we would be ruled by the cast of The View.

rehajm said...

Xmas analysis is correct I believe. The key states to watch are CO and PA.

rehajm said...

You can follow WI MI VA and MN but Trump won't get them without a win in either PA or CO.

Right now he looks one state short. He might lose the election because of the pro weed candidate.

rehajm said...

And VA is no longer a southern state as N. VA has had an influx of "Dem" voters the past (20) years. Which is why NC is now competitive also ie northerners moving south.

This is correct as well. I would add NH to the now blue list too. Mass holes and leftie college towns now dominate the Rs.,,

Dan Hossley said...

Democrat victories in Virginia and North Carolina depend on heavy black voter turnout. It's not happening this time around.

Gahrie said...


I voted for Romney. But if you think more people would vote for Romney than Trump you are an idiot


All it would take is 270 Electors.....

veillo loco said...

The pollsters are as corrupt and in bed with the Dems as the media. Don't any of you remember past elections were polled wrong? People don't want to tell the pollsters or exit pollsters the truth; they like to stick it to the MAN.

Big Mike said...

The RealClearPolitics "no toss-ups" electoral map is quite eye-opening. A few days ago it had Hillary at 333. Today she's at 274. If Trump keeps states where he's ahead and peels away Colorado or Michigan or Wisconsin or New Hampshire plus Maine CD2 and the election is his. That's just a couple days' time.

Static Ping said...

Virginia has been a weird state. The last couple of statewide elections were more or less abandoned by the Republican Party as lost causes and then ended up being very close Democratic victories. Robert Warner beat Ed Gillespie for senate in 2016 by 0.8% of the vote and less votes that the Libertarian Party candidate won. Ditto for McAuliffe's governor victory in 2013: Terry won 47.7% to 45.2% over Cuccinelli with the Libertarian candidate taking 6.5% of the vote. In neither election did the Democrat break 50%.

Not saying Trump is going to win the state, but this is the one state that I would not be surprised by a surprise.

Clyde said...

One big question is how much the Comey announcement and the continuing drip-drip-drip of WikiLeaks is going to suppress voters who would prefer Hillary to Trump but can't bring themselves to vote for someone who is so dishonest and, frankly, compromised. If Hillary is elected, she will be under investigation from Day 1. That's why Democrat consultant Doug Schoen announced on Fox News the other day that as of then, he was unable to support her or vote for her, because he felt she would probably immediately precipitate a constitutional crisis. How many other Doug Schoens are out there across our country? How many other Democrats realize that even if she wins, it's a Pyrrhic victory?

Big Mike said...

@Static Ping, the northeastern corner of the state, meaning the suburbs of Washington, DC, is incandescent blue because as Clinton, Bush II, an especially Obama expanded the size of government the bureaucrats moved there or in the Maryland suburbs. There are blue areas around college towns like Charlottesville and around Hampton. But the southwestern tail of the state is Appalachia-like coal country and it's gone deep red ever since the War on Coal. Here in the Shenandoah Valley hardly anyone will be voting for Hillary.

Well I'm doing my part, not out of love for Donald Trump, but respect for the law and disgust at Crooked Hillary. But the cheating will be pretty hard to beat.

tim maguire said...

Thanks to California and new York, the Democrats can win the popular vote but lose the electoral college. Such an outcome is impossible for Republicans. Since I'm more interested in Trump's prospects than Clinton's, I play little attention to state polls.

Michael The Magnificent said...

11/02/2016 Hampton University's CPP Latest Poll Shows VA Voter Shift from Clinton to Trump Post Email Investigation

Q4. If the election were held today, for whom would you vote:

The Republican ticket of Donald Trump & Mike Pence: 44%
The Democratic ticket of Hillary Clinton & Tim Kaine: 41%
Don’t Know/Refused: 15%
TOTAL: 100%

It must be noted that the poll began on Wednesday, Oct. 26, with 13 days to go before the election. During this time, the news story about the FBI reopening the investigation into email servers used by Clinton was released on Friday, October 28th. While details were scarce, the news did have an impact on the data collected during this time.

Brando said...

"All it would take is 270 Electors....."

I don't see it happening. By the same token, they would have scuttled his nomination at the convention.

Of course, if it's a close election, and one or two electors decide to go for Hillary...

Darrell said...

The Democrats need the polls now to justify their fake, pre-set results. It raises questions otherwise.

Harold said...

Michael The Magnificent said...

Don’t Know/Refused: 15%
TOTAL: 100%


15% undecided or refused? The refused are almost certainly Trump voters. Undecideds this year at this point? If they actually exist, they're going to break massively against the incumbent party. Towards Trump, not a third party.

Sam L. said...

I will note that Don Surber's book "Trump The Press" has a chapter on Nate. It's titled "Nate Silver Tarnished".

dreams said...

I don't think she's going to win but if she does, the consensus seems to be that Congress will impeach her.

dreams said...

So you Dems got that to look forward to.