Getting it very wrong

14 Nov

Pundits.

Those steely eyed, know-it-all, experts on politics.

The ones who grab a reporter and confidently tell you who will win the presidential race.

Expect in this case – they were wrong.

“For the first time, Mitt Romney is tracking at 50% in the newest Washington Post-ABC poll of likely voters. Romney leads President Barack Obama 50 to 47. This is just further evidence why I believe he will sweep the midwest and win this election going away. And I am now predicting a 330 electoral vote landslide. Yes, that’s right. 330 electoral votes.”
– Larry Kudlow

“I’m doubling down. Mitt Romney will win the presidency, and it won’t be close. I’m predicting a 5 to 7 point popular vote victory. Electorally it won’t even be that close. Romney will win many states that went to Obama in 2008. I’m predicting Romney victories in Ohio, Florida, Colorado, Virginia, Iowa, Wisconsin, New Hampshire, North Carolina, and Indiana. I predict a Romney victory by 100 to 120 electoral votes.
In the days before the first presidential debate, polls showed Romney trailing badly in most of those states. But, as I’ve argued from day one, the polls are wrong. They are badly skewed towards Democrats. Quite simply they are over-polling Democratic voters and assuming a turnout that looks like 2008, when record numbers of Democrats came out for Obama.”
– Wayne Allen Root

“This election will not be close. That was my prediction last May when the shape of the presidential campaign became clear and it is my prediction now. While the media and pundits continue to muddy the water with claims and counter-claims feeding a conventional wisdom that this race will be a nail-biter, the reality is that historical facts and strategic blunders long ago doomed Barrack Obama to a single term…
But the most entertaining fall-out will be the recriminations of pollsters and polling generally in the wake of Romney’s 330+ electoral vote win next Tuesday. It has been set in stone early on that the bulk of polling data for this cycle would incorporate some element of the 2008 turn-out model. Averaging past performance is a common tool in polling and, indeed, in all statistical modeling. But what happens if unique and unrepeatable factors create an outlier result? In 2008 President Obama brought out new voters and Democrats in historic numbers. He won independents and even cut into the Republican base because of three unique features of his candidacy: his race, the widespread disapproval of George W. Bush, and the desire to try something different in light of unprecedented economic turmoil.”
– Don Rasmussen

“Barring something major, [Romney] is going to win Florida for four reasons.  The first of which is “a huge shift in this state in women voters,” pointing to a 19-point swing. Florida as a big military state for both active and retired military persons, a demographic that has shown “incredibly strong support” for Romney. Seniors are shifting the polls as well, because “they know $716 billion was cut from medicare in Obamacare — not by Romney.”
– Mike Huckabee

“All indications are that turnout is going to lag the heights of 2008, falling closer to the levels of 1996 and 2000 – a distinct advantage for the Republicans, no matter the election. It is also looking like turnout will break the string of decreasingly white electorates, again a bad sign for the president…
In sum, I see the bottom slipping out from under Obama’s feet, and a campaign hoping to hold on just long enough to salvage a slim victory, one where he is almost certain to lose the popular vote. He is under-performing among whites and independents, and particularly among those likeliest to vote. I have never believed in running the prevent defense, and Obama has been running it for months. Running out the clock is rarely a winning strategy in sports or politics, and it is one I expect to fail this year. Thus, my prediction for Tuesday is this: Obama 260, Romney 278.”
– Ben Domenech

“Bill Clinton is very much in control with respect to 2012: He wants Barack Obama to lose, and is helping that cause.
He wants Obama to lose not primarily, I think, because it probably opens the door wider for Hillary in 2016, but for two other more important (to him) reasons:
1). An Obama reelection loss would leave Clinton as the only twice-elected (i.e., successful) Democratic president since FDR.
2). Obama often disses Clinton, explaining that equality, family income, general well-being in America have suffered in the last three decades or so. Who was president during most of one of those decades, Clinton must think to himself as he grinds his teeth? In Obama’s recounting of recent American history, Clinton tends to be a hapless parenthesis between Reagan-Bush and Bush II. This account presumably doesn’t sit well with America’s 42nd president, and he’s therefore cheerfully doing his best to see to it that Mitt Romney becomes America’s 45th in November.”
– Roger Simon

“My sense from talking to non-campaign sources is that the GOP has been able to stay close to Obama in early voting and will win election day voting. I think economics voters and religious freedom voters, some of whom are Democrats, will push Romney over the line in Ohio.
I think senior citizens, white voters in general, Catholic voters and blue-collar voters help Romney. I think a decreased youth vote hurts Obama.
If you take a polling average in Ohio, the President is three points ahead. Republicans tend to do two points better in Ohio than the polling and Democrats tend to do one point worse than the polling. That puts Ohio tied and I think passion for Romney makes up that gap.”
– Erick Erickson

“Four years ago the Republican Party was in danger of losing status as a national party, pundits said. It was too white, too southern and too old. The GOP still has a long way to go with minority voters, but after President’s Obama four years in office the Republican presidential ticket is appealing to women, voters in blue state strongholds and independents…
The race remains close, but Obama has presided over the Democratic Party’s shrinkage demographically, politically and geographically. The only question is whether Romney can capi­tal­ize and make it past the 270 electoral vote marker.”
– Jennifer Rubin

“I believe the minimum result will be 53-47 Romney, over 300 electoral votes, and the Republicans will pick up the Senate.”
– Newt Gingrich

“Something old is roaring back. One of the Romney campaign’s surrogates, who appeared at a rally with him the other night, spoke of the intensity and joy of the crowd “I worked the rope line, people wouldn’t let go of my hand.” It startled him. A former political figure who’s been in Ohio told me this morning something is moving with evangelicals, other church-going Protestants and religious Catholics. He said what’s happening with them is quiet, unreported and spreading: They really want Romney now, they’ll go out and vote, the election has taken on a new importance to them.
“There is no denying the Republicans have the passion now, the enthusiasm. The Democrats do not. Independents are breaking for Romney. And there’s the thing about the yard signs. In Florida a few weeks ago I saw Romney signs, not Obama ones. From Ohio I hear the same. From tony Northwest Washington, D.C., I hear the same.”
– Peggy Noonan

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