Obama or McCain? Get the best predictions here

nick
Mar 23, 2010

I just stumbled onto www.fivethirtyeight.com, and it's my new favorite site. If you're a political junkie, a stats geek, and blog aficionado, this site is for you (you are also, apparently, my twin).

It pulls together enough charts and supporting data to make your eyes bleed, and uses sophisticated econometrics techniques to more accurately describe the current political landscape. At a glance (okay, at a longish stare) it gives you a better sense of what's happening in this exciting election than anything else I've seen -- and I'm a sucker for an interactive electoral map).

Nate Silver writes the blog -- he is the author of the algorithm that has recently gained acceptance as the most accurate predicter of baseball outcomes, according to Newsweek. He also predicted the primary election outcomes better than any pollster out there. In case you're wondering, 538 is the number of votes in the electoral college -- I found it in the FAQs, having not caught the significance of the number despite having spent many weeks thanklessly defending the institution in grad school. Check it out.

Comments

Anonymous

'Obama'

Anonymous

Elephant ears will never get elected.

RHammons

Been following this for a while, though I have to admit, it's too easy to get caught up on these polls. They can quickly get your hopes up.

I think it'll come down to the last minute come election day.

Can only hope for the best.

Obama/Biden 2008

Anonymous

Mr. White, I read an article the other day that mentioned the late Wm. Allen White as a great Kansas newspaperman. Any relation?

http://wsj.com/article/SB1223074...

See the last paragraph for the reference.

Anonymous

The Race is Over.
The counting will
determine just how
much Obama won by.

Anonymous

The Race is Over alright...for Obama...when everyone finds out what it is he is hiding, and all of his thug friends are exposed.

Anonymous

Please take a hint! I'm only running out of a sense of duty to my party. I chose a wacko Alaskan for my VP, hoping that would push away voters. I gave up campaigning in Michigan. I already know I lost that state; at least I hope I did.

Look, I said I was going to tax your health benefits, picked a mentally-challenged VP who makes Quayle look like a genius, threw away Michigan, what does it take for you boneheads? I don't want the Presidency. I'm 72. I deserve to take it easy. Do you think I want to clean up the mess Georgie boy leaves behind? Get real! I don't need this crap.

Vote for Obama. Then we can blame him for everthing that Bush wrecked, and I can go back to my trophy wife and mowing my seven lawns.

Anonymous

Other than moonbeams and hot air, I ain't seen much from Obama. Once he's Prez., we'll see if the guy can actually walk on water and chew gum at the same time or if he’s just an empty suit.

The media is building him up just like they did Clinton. And just like Clinton, the media will eventually tear him down with rumors and exposés.

Rich Democrats like Kerry, Kennedy and Pelosi tell ya that they're for 'taxing the rich,' and all they while they laugh at your stupidity and protect their wealth behind loopholes in the tax code.

Lenin called people with your mentality 'useful idiots.'

Anonymous

Obama is another Jimmy Carter.

Anonymous

What do they say, better late than never? I've been a full-on 538 addict since Nate established the site after posting his brilliant analysis under a pseudonym on DailyKos late last year. This site is more than a compilation of polls. It takes polls and assigns weighting to them and then applies Nate's regression analysis and does current "state of the race" as well as "election day" projections. Without question Obama is in a very strong position right now. McCain's lack of an economic plan, his dirty and ineffectual campaign tactics, and his erratic decision-making during this campaign have convinced people that Barack is a stable and thoughtful decision maker that will look out for the middle class and offer real, fundamental change.

Anonymous

Barack Obama - From Dreams of My Father

Barack Obama - Audacity of Hope

From Dreams of My Father:'I ceased to advertise my mother's race at the age of 12 or 13, when I began to suspect that by doing so I was ingratiating myself to whites.'
From Dreams of My Father : 'I found a solace in nursing a pervasive sense of grievance and animosity against my mother's race.'
From Dreams of My Father:'There was something about him that made me wary, a little too sure of himself, maybe. And white.'
From Dreams of My Father: 'It remained necessary to prove which side you were on, to show your loyalty to the black masses, to strike out and name names.'
From Dreams of My Father:'I never emulate white men and brown men whose fates didn't speak to my own. It was into my father's image, the black man, son of Africa , that I'd packed all the attributes I sought in myself , the attributes of Martin and Malcolm, DuBois and Mandela.'

And FINALLY the Most Damning one of ALL of them!!!

From Audacity of Hope:'I will stand with the Muslims should the political winds shift in an ugly direction.'
We CANNOT have someone with this type of mentality running our GREAT nation!! I don't care whether you a Democrat or a Conservative. We CANNOT turn ourselves over to this type of character in a President.

Anonymous

538's analysis includes adjustment of the data by Mr. Silver, who is an Obama supporter. I prefer election.princeton.edu, which uses no such adjustments.

Anonymous

From the two books by these names..

From Audacity of Hope

From Dreams of My Father

From Dreams of My Father:'I ceased to advertise my mother's race at the age of 12 or 13, when I began to suspect that by doing so I was ingratiating myself to whites.'
From Dreams of My Father : 'I found a solace in nursing a pervasive sense of grievance and animosity against my mother's race.'
From Dreams of My Father:'There was something about him that made me wary, a little too sure of himself, maybe. And white.'
From Dreams of My Father: 'It remained necessary to prove which side you were on, to show your loyalty to the black masses, to strike out and name names.'
From Dreams of My Father:'I never emulate white men and brown men whose fates didn't speak to my own. It was into my father's image, the black man, son of Africa , that I'd packed all the attributes I sought in myself , the attributes of Martin and Malcolm, DuBois and Mandela.'

And FINALLY the Most Damning one of ALL of them!!!
From Audacity of Hope:'I will stand with the Muslims should the political winds shift in an ugly direction.'
We CANNOT have someone with this type of mentality running our GREAT nation!! I don't care whether you a Democrat or a Conservative. We CANNOT turn ourselves over to this type of character in a President.

Anonymous

I haven't heard the Republicans crow about family values during this campaign. Is it because George W. Bush and his daughters all have alcohol offenses under their belts? Is it because McCain dumped his first wife for his current trophy wife? Maybe it's because Palin's unmarried teen daughter is pregnant. Where's your family values, GOP?

Anonymous

Yea with those kind of 'lousy' values, they ought to be Democrats right?

richard

Ed - Don't you dare malign the Honorable Jimmy Carter, anti-Semite and Home Builder to the World, by putting Obama on the same platform with him. It's just not fair.

We'll all be singing for dear leader Obama, all the way to the poor house and the unemployment line:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0...

Then watch the creepy parallels:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i...

Anonymous

Carter's advisors told him to let the Shah fall and that the U.S. could deal with the mullahs. LOL.

Remember how the dying Shah was brought to the U.S. and then when the Iranians complained Carter had him shipped him to Panama?

Nothing like having the Iranians tell ya how to run your county's affairs.

I figure Prez. Obama's foreign policy will be largely hot air and limp wrists like Carter's.

I'd like to take that finger that Obama keeps thrusting into the air while he speaking and stick it somewhere on his person.

Sam

All voters check the facts on ACORN, this group was funded by Obama & radical William Ayers and presured banks into making home loans to low income people that could not afford them. Now this same ACORN is under investigation for voter fraud in 7 states, again fraud with low income people lying about their address.

Anonymous

You wrote that ACORN was '...funded by Obama & radical William Ayers...'

Bet you meant 'founded.'

American taxpayers help to 'fund' ACORN and La Raza, just like we give millions to AARP and other liberal 'special interest groups.'

To the lefties, NRA bad, ACORN and American Federation of Teachers (AFT)good.

It depends on whose special interest group is being gored.

Not-to-worry, while we wait, the entire U.S. economy is being nationalized. All that remains if for Comrade Obama crown himself the Commissar of the new socialist America.

Political re-education camps anyone?

Sam

No Obama & Ayers FUNDED Acorn through their foundation!

Anonymous

I checked out fivethirtyeight, what a great site! I also urge voters to take a look at factcheck.org to see where the candidates have been wrong in stating their "facts".

Please do not base your opinions on the opinions of others. Base your opinions on facts, regardless of which party you support. Smarter voters might just lead to a smarter government.

Anonymous

I have to admit, seeing the quotes from Obama's books was really disturbing. So disturbing, in fact, that I decided to look into it further. Guess what? I found out these quotes were coming from an e-mail smear campaign, and if not totally out of context, were outright fabrications.

The smear: "I found a solace in nursing a pervasive sense of grievance and animosity against my mother's race."

The truth: Nothing close to this quote appears in "Dreams from My Father".

The smear: "I will stand with the Muslims should the political winds shift in an ugly direction."

The truth: "...In the wake of 9/11, my meetings with Arab and Pakistani Americans, for example, have a more urgent quality, for the stories of detentions and FBI questioning and hard stares from neighbors have shaken their sense of security and belonging...they need specific assurances that their (American) citizenship means something, that America has learned the right lessons from the Japanese internments during WWII, and that I will stand with them should the political winds shift in an ugly direction." (pages 260-261)

Why do you prefer to waste your time lying about Obama rather that touting the positive attributes of McCain? Do you have so little faith in your candidate that you feel lying is the only way to prevail?

My father was a Republican, my grandfather was a Republican, and I was a Republican. I quit the party over this type of "campaigning". I know what a real Republican stands for. Unfortunately, most of the dregs that have associated themselves with the party over the past twenty years wouldn't amount to a hair on a true Republican's knuckle. That includes drug addict Rush Limbaugh and compulsive liar Wayne LaPierre, NRA president.

I don't consider being a liar a conservative quality. In fact, it is the antithesis to classic conservatism.

Anonymous

You’re no Republican.

To throw your political philosophy overboard due to ridiculous rumors and innuendoes would demonstrate your shallowness of commitment.

So the collectivism as espoused by Obama is preferable to individual responsibility and conservativism?

Merely saying that you’re a Republican sure doesn’t make you one. You’re absurd argument for abandoning the Party exposes you as a lying socialist Democrat.

Sam

Comrade Obama, Acorn, Ayers and Wright.
Need I say more.

Anonymous

If you want to call me a liar, fine. What am I lying about? The fact that I quit the Republican party after being sold a bill of goods one too many times? I didn't sever my ties with the Republicans last week. I quit the party in 1984, vowing not to affiliate with ANY party or candidate that would rather engage in character assassination than address the issues. Like I mentioned before, lying is not what I consider a conservative value.

If Obama was actually guilty of even half of what his detractors charge, he'd be in jail, not in the presidential race. Meanwhile, Sarah Palin has conducted her own investigation about using the Alaska statehouse to settle family issues, and has found herself not guilty on all charges. Feel free to call me some more names.

Anonymous

To-The truth about Obama book. Thank you for leaving the Republican Party, we really do not need far left wingers. I hear Iran is nice this time of year, and should fit your political views.

Anonymous

Dear Editor

Our beautiful soon to be Vice President Sarah Palin is the best future leader for this nation, not Senator Barak Obama. Our beautiful soon to be Vice President Sarah Palin is also would be better at leading our nation in the future after a McCain Presidency than Senator Barak Obama would be in leading our nation in the future starting in January 2009. There are great reasons our soon to be Vice President Sarah Palin would be a better future leader than Senator Barak Obama. The greatest reason for our soon to be Vice President Sarah Palin's is ideology. Our soon to be Vice President Sarah Palin is conservative in that she is pro life, marriage, guns, low taxes, low government spending, small government, unintrosive government, traditional and judeo Christian values, Bible reading and prayer in our public schools, and military spending. Senator Barak Obama is a liberal who is anti every thing that I have described that our soon to be Vice President Sarah Palin is pro about or for. A second reason that our soon to be Vice President Sarah Palin is superior is because of experience. As a governor she has two years of executive administrative governing experience that Senator Barak Obama does not have. A final reason that our soon to be Vice President Sarah Palin is superior is because of political accomplishments. When our soon to be Vice President Sarah Palin came to office she accomplished 3 major things which are as follows: she showed great leadership in the 3 following areas: government reform, the state budget and the economy, and wise use of natural resources. She reformed government by standing up to the big oil companies by breaking up the monopoly on power and resources. She insisted on competition and basic fairness which ended the control that the oil companies had on the state, and thereby returning control of the state back to the people. She also stood up to the special interest and lobbyist, and produced major ethics reform. She lead well in the state budget by generating a surplus which came about by vetoing a half billion dollars of wasteful spending, ending the abuses of earmark spending by congress, and by getting rid of the private jet, the chef, and the chuffer. Economically under her leadership she brought about the largest private-sector infrastructure project in North American history. She also suspended the state fuel tax, and when oil and gas prices went up dramatically, and filled up the state treasury, she sent a large share of that revenue back where it belonged - directly to the people of Alaska . On natural resources she has shown great leadership by beginning a nearly forty billion dollar natural gas pipeline to help lead America to energy independence. When the last section of the pipeline is laid and its valves are opened, will lead America one step farther away from dependence on dangerous foreign powers that do not have our interests at heart. Senator Barak Obama has done nothing, so please vote John McCain for President and give to our beautiful soon to be Vice President Sarah Palin the opportunity that she deserves leading the nation into the future after a John McCain presidency. When our soon to be Vice President does lead the nation as President after a John McCain presidency,she will be the greatest President that we have ever had. Finally she is smarter than Senator Barak Obama

Thank You

John Warren

Anonymous

So, you're a Marxist. I'm OK with that.

Anonymous

The facts about Obama will not come out until the after the election.

The news media is helping to create him and the news media will destroy him with exposés.

Obama is merely a temporary stand-in for President Biden. Obama is a ‘useful idiot.’

Rick Studer

Dear John;

Is dumb as a stump also on your list?

Also, use paragraphs, it would then be more likely that people would read your crap and get the same chuckle I did.

Please disregard the above. This crap is from some self-flagellator posting all over the Internet, not a local idiot.

http://community.mccainspace.com...

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