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Sun Dec 16, 2012, 02:42 PM

Final Tally Shows Election Wasn't Even Close

On a slightly brighter note than many of the other threads on this forum the last few days:

Los Angeles Times: "More than five weeks after election day, almost all the presidential votes have been counted. Here's what the near-final tally reveals: The election really wasn't close."

"In the weeks since the election, as states have completed their counts, Obama's margin has grown steadily. From just over 2 percentage points, it now stands at nearly 4. Rather than worry about the Bush-Kerry precedent, White House aides now brag that Obama seems all but certain to achieve a mark hit by only five others in U.S. history - winning the presidency twice with 51% or more of the popular vote."

...
Most of the nationís remaining uncounted ballots, perhaps as many as 413,000, Wasserman estimated, are in heavily Democratic New York, where officials have until next week to finish their tabulations. The other two states yet to certify a final count are West Virginia, which Romney carried, and Hawaii, which went heavily for its native son, the president. Once all those get tossed into the mix, Obamaís margin almost surely will rise slightly, allowing him to claim the 51% mark without rounding up.




http://politicalwire.com/archives/2012/12/16/final_tally_shows_election_wasnt_even_close.html

21 replies, 3473 views

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Arrow 21 replies Author Time Post
Reply Final Tally Shows Election Wasn't Even Close (Original post)
democrattotheend Dec 2012 OP
zipplewrath Dec 2012 #1
ReRe Dec 2012 #2
efhmc Dec 2012 #12
heaven05 Dec 2012 #3
xtraxritical Dec 2012 #5
Jim Lane Dec 2012 #9
democrattotheend Dec 2012 #10
zipplewrath Dec 2012 #11
Jim Lane Dec 2012 #14
zipplewrath Dec 2012 #18
DeschutesRiver Dec 2012 #20
bluestateguy Dec 2012 #4
cecilfirefox Dec 2012 #6
gussmith Dec 2012 #7
Flatulo Dec 2012 #8
Samantha Dec 2012 #16
Joe the Progressive Dec 2012 #13
democrattotheend Dec 2012 #15
Joe the Progressive Dec 2012 #17
myrna minx Dec 2012 #19
MassedPole Dec 2012 #21

Response to democrattotheend (Original post)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 04:58 PM

1. And Nate was Ignored

The dirty little secret was that Nate was telling everyone, and no one was listening. Quite honestly, they were attacking him. The question that should be asked is, how could so many get it so wrong? Did they get it so wrong, or were they infused with a bias of some sort that interfered with them seeing it, or acknowledging it?

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Response to zipplewrath (Reply #1)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 05:11 PM

2. sniff, sniff, sniff.....

....smells to me like they were infused with a bucket of gaseous, dirty, stinking money.

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Response to ReRe (Reply #2)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 10:11 PM

12. Funny.

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Response to zipplewrath (Reply #1)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 05:12 PM

3. yeah

Pox Noise bias.

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Response to zipplewrath (Reply #1)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 05:29 PM

5. Possibly they knew the "fix was in" in Ohio?

 

Be on the alert.

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Response to zipplewrath (Reply #1)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 06:29 PM

9. There seems to be this myth that Nate Silver was the only one who called it for Obama.

Every site I saw that did state-by-state poll aggregation had Obama winning the electoral vote. As for the popular vote, the final pre-election polls had a wide range; I think more of them underestimated Obama's vote than overestimated it, but I don't think there's a basis for saying that so many got it so wrong. The many who got it wrong included some pollsters but were mostly partisan hacks like Dick Morris.

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Response to Jim Lane (Reply #9)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 08:00 PM

10. Most rational people expected Obama to win

At least by the night before the election. Of course, I started panicking on Election Day itself, but that's just me...I panicked in 2008 as well.

But I think the margin he won by was a little surprising...it was basically a best-case scenario absent a huge last minute wave. He overperformed the national polls and the polling average in every single swing state except Ohio.

And I am pretty sure Nate is the only one who predicted Florida. We have to give him that.

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Response to Jim Lane (Reply #9)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 08:08 PM

11. 80%

Nate was calling it, by the end, that there was an 80% chance that Obama would win. Truth is, for MONTHS, he had it over 70%. I watched alot of shows on different networks, and read a paper every day. I didn't see a large discussion about the inevitability, or the large hurdle that Romney had to over come. The conversation was about small daily variations in polls, and how "neck and neck" it was. It was NEVER close, going way back to March. In the last couple of weeks, you began to hear that Obama "seemed" to have a lead, but no discussion about how the race was basically "over". The discussion should have been about the margin, not how it was neck and neck.

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Response to zipplewrath (Reply #11)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 10:58 PM

14. It's the distinction between popular vote and electoral vote.

I was following the site electoral-vote.com, which started doing in 2004 what Silver started doing in 2008: ignoring national polls and instead looking at each state, applying a formula to the available polls for that state and reaching a prediction as to how it would go. The Princeton Election Consortium did this, as did the right-wing Real Clear Politics, I think Larry Sabato, and several others. All of these sites called the Electoral College for Obama.

My personal opinion is that the reason the race was, as you say, basically "over" is that the Obama campaign made the correct strategic decision when it went after Romney early with negative ads in the swing states. The Romney campaign had some constraints on what it could do, because it had spent so much in the primaries. Furthermore, even to the extent it had money, the campaign made the opposite strategic decision -- to do little advertising until after the conventions, on the theory that most people (at least, most swing voters) weren't paying attention until then anyway.

The Obama strategy proved to be superior. Because Romney was much less well known on the national stage, OfA was able to define him in many swing-state voters' minds.

The result was that, even when the race for the national popular vote was close, the Electoral College varied only between a clean win and a wipeout. OfA put its strength where the dirt was, to borrow from an old detergent commercial.

Many on DU have remarked that the media have an institutional incentive to portray a race as closer than it is. Another factor is that it's much easier to look at the latest fluctuation in a single national number -- Obama 49%, Romney 47% or whatever -- than to look at the 51 separate electorates that actually decide the race. For both these reasons, many media pundits gave too little weight to Obama's very strong position in the swing states.

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Response to Jim Lane (Reply #14)

Mon Dec 17, 2012, 10:01 AM

18. We'll never know

As good as the OFA campaign was, I don't think that Nate's data particularly supports the view that it was the advertising that sunk him. He fought through the primary with the same basic problem he had in the general. Basically, people didn't believe him.

Negative ads tend to work because the re-enforce peoples preconceived ideas about a person, or they feed their fears about that person. My suspicion is that the most effective ads were the ones where he was speaking. The 47%, the comments about Planned Parenthood and Roe v. Wade. These projected images that fed the fears and ideas that people had about Romney. With the economy marginally (and slowly) getting better than the pit we just went through, people were not going to vote for change if they thought that it would risk the meager progress we have made.

Many on DU have remarked that the media have an institutional incentive to portray a race as closer than it is. Another factor is that it's much easier to look at the latest fluctuation in a single national number -- Obama 49%, Romney 47% or whatever -- than to look at the 51 separate electorates that actually decide the race.


It isn't all that tough to read Nate's column, or any of those that you referenced, and get an idea of what we are discussing. At the very least, one would have expected the pundits to mention that the national was tightening, but that tightening didn't seem to be "shifting" the EC.

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Response to Jim Lane (Reply #9)

Mon Dec 17, 2012, 11:19 AM

20. I saw the same re the electoral vote. It wasn't a surprise, nor was this a close horse race. nt

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Response to democrattotheend (Original post)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 05:20 PM

4. Steve Wasserman over at Cook's says there are still 400,000 votes in New York to count

And he has no idea when they will be counted.

https://twitter.com/Redistrict/status/279259963161972737

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Response to democrattotheend (Original post)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 05:31 PM

6. OBAMA! \O/

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Response to democrattotheend (Original post)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 05:34 PM

7. 2000 Results

I never felt-informed about the 2000 Florida election that apparently placed Bush in office. First, what became of the complaints from blacks and rural voters that their routes to the polling places were blocked? Roads made impassible, I remember reading. Was the military vote counted? And, why was the decision elevated to the Supreme Court? Usually courts have to follow jurisdictional roles - who bypassed the federal courts?

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Response to gussmith (Reply #7)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 05:45 PM

8. The Florida Supreme Court did rule for Gore, but Bush appealed to the SCOTUS.

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Response to Flatulo (Reply #8)

Mon Dec 17, 2012, 12:26 AM

16. "The right to vote is paramount"

I believe that was the first sentence in its opinion. The Supreme Court had no authority to upend the state supreme court since the Constitution delegates the power to run Presidential elections to the states. But of course the Supreme Court did so because it could....

Sam

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Response to democrattotheend (Original post)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 10:42 PM

13. Irony?

I find it rather ironic that Romney ended up with 47% of the vote.

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Response to Joe the Progressive (Reply #13)

Sun Dec 16, 2012, 11:07 PM

15. I made shirts and buttons dedicated to this irony

After watching Dave Wasserman on Twitter for 3 weeks waiting for Romney to fall below 47.5%.



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Response to democrattotheend (Original post)

Mon Dec 17, 2012, 10:28 AM

19. K&R

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Response to democrattotheend (Original post)

Mon Dec 17, 2012, 06:00 PM

21. But according to CNN it was a close one.

 

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