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Old Nov 5, 2012, 09:11 PM   #1
forcesteeler
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Nate Silver has Obama up to 91.4% re-election

http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/


Nate Silver Called the Election of 2008 for Obama way back in march 2008.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/10/bu...pagewanted=all

Remember he used to be a Professional Poker Player and Nate Silver Developed a System which is Called PECOTA system which is used by the Major League Baseball to forcast player performance.

When it comes to numbers he is King
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 09:19 PM   #2
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No wonder Obama's got that spring in his step I've been seeing in news clips today.
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 09:37 PM   #3
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Wow, that has Obama winning Ohio, Florida, Colorado, Nevada, and Virginia. (And 67% chance of Mourdock losing. )
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 09:41 PM   #4
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Seriously, though, I hope all of these forecasters are right. I'm so sick of worrying about this.

Last edited by SilentPanda; Nov 7, 2012 at 03:19 PM. Reason: removed trolling
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 10:04 PM   #5
myrtlebee
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Seriously, though, I hope all of these forecasters are right. I'm so sick of worrying about this.
If he does win, it will seem so incredible that we were even worried that someone like Romney could possibly win the presidency. I only hope people don't forget how close we were to that being (one hell of a scary) reality.

Last edited by SilentPanda; Nov 7, 2012 at 03:19 PM. Reason: fixed quote
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 10:23 PM   #6
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If he does win, it will seem so incredible that we were even worried that someone like Romney could possibly win the presidency. I only hope people don't forget how close we were to that being (one hell of a scary) reality.
I second
I want to sleep like we got it in the bag, but we don't , and its frightening that we might have Romney as president..... I really dont want to be surprised in a bad way tomorrow
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Old Nov 5, 2012, 11:52 PM   #7
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Hoping for a blow-out, so I have one less thing to worry about tomorrow: the office is going to be a nutty place.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 05:49 AM   #8
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Looks like Nate Silver added some good news for Obama shortly after your last post, hulugu:

Quote:
Nov. 5: Late Poll Gains for Obama Leave Romney With Longer Odds
By NATE SILVER

Mitt Romney has always had difficulty drawing a winning Electoral College hand. Even during his best period of polling, in the week or two after the first presidential debate in Denver, he never quite pulled ahead in the polling averages in Ohio and other states that would allow him to secure 270 electoral votes.

But the most recent set of polls suggest another problem for Mr. Romney, whose momentum in the polls stalled out in mid-October. Instead, it is President Obama who is making gains.

Among 12 national polls published on Monday, Mr. Obama led by an average of 1.6 percentage points. Perhaps more important is the trend in the surveys. On average, Mr. Obama gained 1.5 percentage points from the prior edition of the same polls, improving his standing in nine of the surveys while losing ground in just one.

Nate now has Obama with a 91.6% chance of winning, up .2 from when forcesteeler started this thread. Mitt Romney's chance? 8.4%.

I still won't be able to relax until it's all over, though.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 09:14 AM   #9
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Intrade says 72% Obama, up from mid-60's yesterday.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 09:28 AM   #10
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Saved for posterity.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 02:45 PM   #11
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well, the program uses math so it makes sense.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 03:22 PM   #12
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There's something I've been thinking about this week as I've continued to peruse Silver's blog. I may not be able to articulate it well but I'll try. As we go forward, with more and more accurate polling predictions and data and such, what happens to that "chance of winning" stat when we have elections that are far less close and more close?

Go back in time, to some true landslide election, like back in 1984. In that election, the winner won 525 electoral votes and the loser won 14. The winner won 54M of the popular vote and the loser won 37M.

Had Silver had all of the data resources and algorithms and such preceding and was accurate that election, what "chance of winning" would he have assigned that election. To put it in perspective, Silver says Obama has a ninety percent chance of winning when there is only an expected spread of 90 electoral votes and less than two points on the popular vote. Would Silver had assigned a 99.9999% chance of the 1984 victor winning? There's only so much room to work north of 90%.

Conversely, if the current race is, as Silver suggests, to be won by a 90-electoral vote spread and a less-than 2% popular vote, what would it take for Silver to predict someone winning but with only, for example, a 60% chance of winning?

Not sure if I'm making sense. I think Silver's stuff is really cool, and enjoyed hearing him interviewed on NPR recently. I guess my broad question/concern/observation is that what will it take in the future to have less certainty than 90% if today's election, which seems arguably close, warrants a 90% prediction?
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 03:28 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kavika411 View Post
...Had Silver had all of the data resources and algorithms and such preceding and was accurate that election, what "chance of winning" would he have assigned that election. To put it in perspective, Silver says Obama has a ninety percent chance of winning when there is only an expected spread of 90 electoral votes and less than two points on the popular vote. Would Silver had assigned a 99.9999% chance of the 1984 victor winning? There's only so much room to work north of 90%.?
That's a really interesting question.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 03:33 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by kavika411 View Post
There's something I've been thinking about this week as I've continued to peruse Silver's blog. I may not be able to articulate it well but I'll try. As we go forward, with more and more accurate polling predictions and data and such, what happens to that "chance of winning" stat when we have elections that are far less close and more close?

Go back in time, to some true landslide election, like back in 1984. In that election, the winner won 525 electoral votes and the loser won 14. The winner won 54M of the popular vote and the loser won 37M.

Had Silver had all of the data resources and algorithms and such preceding and was accurate that election, what "chance of winning" would he have assigned that election. To put it in perspective, Silver says Obama has a ninety percent chance of winning when there is only an expected spread of 90 electoral votes and less than two points on the popular vote. Would Silver had assigned a 99.9999% chance of the 1984 victor winning? There's only so much room to work north of 90%.

Conversely, if the current race is, as Silver suggests, to be won by a 90-electoral vote spread and a less-than 2% popular vote, what would it take for Silver to predict someone winning but with only, for example, a 60% chance of winning?

Not sure if I'm making sense. I think Silver's stuff is really cool, and enjoyed hearing him interviewed on NPR recently. I guess my broad question/concern/observation is that what will it take in the future to have less certainty than 90% if today's election, which seems arguably close, warrants a 90% prediction?
First, let me say that this is a very well thought-out and intellectual question. Not to be condescending, as that is not my intent, I am very impressed. It makes a lot of sense, and I see where you are going with it.

To answer your question, I want to say that it is up to how he runs his numbers and how his models are based. To that extent, He and Sam Wang (of the Princeton Election Consortium) were both on Science Friday a few weeks ago talking about the science of predicting the election. This was probably the interview you caught:

http://sciencefriday.com/segment/10/...ial-polls.html

However, in another post, the PEC goes into how the models are created, and this might provide insight into what you are looking for:

http://election.princeton.edu/2012/1...s-and-modelers

I want to say in my short perusing the PEC's site, there was a post or two a while ago about how Reagan would have been predicted in '84 with the models and aggregators we have now. I can't remember how far back it was, but the PEC may have the numbers you're looking for, and how the predictions would be made. There's a good place to start.

BL.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 03:41 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by hulugu View Post
interesting question.
Quote:
Originally Posted by bradl View Post
I see where you are going with it.
Thanks, and yes, I believe it was that Science Friday interview I heard. It almost sounded like they were flirting with each other as they enjoy what they do so much. It was a good listen.

Anyway, I'll take it one step farther and then jump out. My overriding concern is this. Everyone loves to loathe the "24 hour news cycle" monster. Personally, I'm not quite as bothered. But I am bothered at the thought that science and math, for lack of a better phrase, can make slice a hair-thin race such that it is nonetheless a 90-percent certainty. Again, I'm not faulting or pointing a finger at Silver. His stuff is cool. But it's hard to look forward to a future where we know with 90-plus percent certainty the outcome of a legitimately tight race. It's like some kind of ugly cousin of insurance companies using your DNA predispositions for underwriting purposes (or maybe that's stretching it a bit thin). At a minimum, as more and more people learn of Silver's and Silver-type pollsters out there, will they not, in some infinite loop kind of way, become more powerful than the issues, even if they are doing absolutely nothing more than reporting the truth and not pushing agenda?

Anyway, I fear the days of surprise may be over, at least for the presidential election.

Off to buy some Gentleman Jack and settle in for the night.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 03:43 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by kavika411 View Post
Thanks, and yes, I believe it was that Science Friday interview I heard. It almost sounded like they were flirting with each other as they enjoy what they do so much. It was a good listen.

Anyway, I'll take it one step farther and then jump out. My overriding concern is this. Everyone loves to loathe the "24 hour news cycle" monster. Personally, I'm not quite as bothered. But I am bothered at the thought that science and math, for lack of a better phrase, can make slice a hair-thin race such that it is nonetheless a 90-percent certainty. Again, I'm not faulting or pointing a finger at Silver. His stuff is cool. But it's hard to look forward to a future where we know with 90-plus percent certainty the outcome of a tight race. It's like some kind of ugly cousin of insurance companies using your DNA predispositions for underwriting purposes (or maybe that's stretching it a bit thin).

Anyway, I fear the days of surprise may be over, at least for the presidential election.
The race is only razor thin if you look at the popular vote. We both know thats not how the future is decided in this here particular democracy
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 03:45 PM   #17
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The race is only razor thin if you look at the popular vote. We both know thats not how the future is decided in this here particular democracy
Yes, we both know that popular vote doesn't decide presidential races. That's why I cited Silver's 90-point spread as well. I'm not getting into the politics of this election in this thread, hence why I didn't bother naming names in the '84 election.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 03:51 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by kavika411 View Post
There's something I've been thinking about this week as I've continued to peruse Silver's blog. I may not be able to articulate it well but I'll try. As we go forward, with more and more accurate polling predictions and data and such, what happens to that "chance of winning" stat when we have elections that are far less close and more close?

Go back in time, to some true landslide election, like back in 1984. In that election, the winner won 525 electoral votes and the loser won 14. The winner won 54M of the popular vote and the loser won 37M.

Had Silver had all of the data resources and algorithms and such preceding and was accurate that election, what "chance of winning" would he have assigned that election. To put it in perspective, Silver says Obama has a ninety percent chance of winning when there is only an expected spread of 90 electoral votes and less than two points on the popular vote. Would Silver had assigned a 99.9999% chance of the 1984 victor winning? There's only so much room to work north of 90%.

Conversely, if the current race is, as Silver suggests, to be won by a 90-electoral vote spread and a less-than 2% popular vote, what would it take for Silver to predict someone winning but with only, for example, a 60% chance of winning?

Not sure if I'm making sense. I think Silver's stuff is really cool, and enjoyed hearing him interviewed on NPR recently. I guess my broad question/concern/observation is that what will it take in the future to have less certainty than 90% if today's election, which seems arguably close, warrants a 90% prediction?
You are making perfect sense. I think its like this: Silver is giving the odds on winning. Not on winning by a lot. I don't know if you can compare the two. If he was predicting Obama winning by a landslide, his odds would probably be very low.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 03:52 PM   #19
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 03:53 PM   #20
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another very interesting way to see how the votes add up

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2...l?ref=politics
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 03:57 PM   #21
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You are making perfect sense. I think its like this: Silver is giving the odds on winning. Not on winning by a lot. I don't know if you can compare the two. If he was predicting Obama winning by a landslide, his odds would probably be very low.
Very good point. I see exactly what you are saying and the distinction you are drawing. But hypothetically what "chances of winning" - by any margin - would Silver have given the victor in 1984? Again, how much higher north can you go than 90%. And I realize my question is rhetorical as you aren't Silver, but there's something that tickles my brain unpleasantly about the idea of a spread as small as 90 electoral points equalling a "chance of winning" - again, by any margin - of north-of-90%. I think I'm simply having one of those moments where I'm glancing into the future, the data available, etc., and I'm uncomfortable with it.

Put another way, I'm becoming a lifeless old man. Need bourbon.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 04:02 PM   #22
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Will probably be Obama holding your Texas hometown's wrong Romney winning paper.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 04:15 PM   #23
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Here's what I understand from reading Nate's posts. The reason the chance for Obama is so high from a bunch of close polls is that Obama is consistently on the winning side of close polls. Therefore, in order for Romney to win, ALL of the polls would have to be biased toward Obama in some way. The odds of that are low and therefore Obama had a high chance of winning.

To get a close race by Nate's aggregation, you would basically need to have half of the polls leaning slightly Romney and half the polls leaning slightly Obama. That would make it hard to deduce the "true" polling.

But to me, the more fascinating question is this: at what point do the polls become so accurate that an actual election becomes a waste of time?

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Old Nov 6, 2012, 04:31 PM   #24
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If he does win, it will seem so incredible that we were even worried that someone like Romney could possibly win the presidency. I only hope people don't forget how close we were to that being (one hell of a scary) reality.
Genuinely hope this is the case. This election has been playing on my mind for too long.
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Old Nov 6, 2012, 04:34 PM   #25
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...But I am bothered at the thought that science and math, for lack of a better phrase, can make slice a hair-thin race such that it is nonetheless a 90-percent certainty. Again, I'm not faulting or pointing a finger at Silver. His stuff is cool. But it's hard to look forward to a future where we know with 90-plus percent certainty the outcome of a legitimately tight race. It's like some kind of ugly cousin of insurance companies using your DNA predispositions for underwriting purposes (or maybe that's stretching it a bit thin). At a minimum, as more and more people learn of Silver's and Silver-type pollsters out there, will they not, in some infinite loop kind of way, become more powerful than the issues, even if they are doing absolutely nothing more than reporting the truth and not pushing agenda?
I had the same thought reading your earlier posts. Couldn't respected, usually accurate predictors like Silver actually begin to affect the race itself, discouraging voters on the "losing" side from showing up? Causing them to think, "Why bother? My guy's only got a 3% chance of winning."

That is a really good question, and if something like this ever comes to pass, well...I don't know what the solution would be. Pass a law banning polls a week or so prior to the actual election? That's kind of a sledge-hammer approach.
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