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I feel incredibly confident that Obama will win tonight, just as I felt incredibly confident he would win in 2008.  In both cases, that's because of the incredible analysis of Nate Silver (as well as the other statistics junkies out there who run aggregation sites).

Thinking back to 2004, I remember feeling cautiously optimistic about John Kerry's chances, but in large part that was because I bought the spin that undecideds would break for the challenger.  

I don't remember anything close to the sort of aggregation we see on the Web these days.  I was a steady Daily Kos reader back then but the positive diaries I read were never as data-based as the ones we see today.

So I wonder... if Nate had been dissecting the polls in 2004 the way he does now, would he have shown Bush with a strong chance at victory?  60, 70, even 80% or above?

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Comment Preferences

  •  He probably would have got Ohio wrong, and (6+ / 0-)

    I still don't trust what happened in that state on Election Day 2004.

  •  We know what Sam Wang's model predicted (13+ / 0-)

    Bush 286 EV, Kerry 252 EV. As in, the exact outcome.

  •  Probably 70-80% Bush (3+ / 0-)

    Bush had a small lead in national polls and led most of OH state polls.

  •  I think Nate would have called it 50/50... (0+ / 0-)

    If Kerry had won Ohio (and if there had not been voter suppression he probably would have) Democrats would have been as surprised as Republicans.  Kerry was fighting an uphill battle pretty much the entire campaign.

    There is no way, at all, he would have given Bush an 80% chance of winning reelection.

    Tax and Spend I can understand. I can even understand Borrow and Spend. But Borrow and give Billionaires tax cuts? That I have a problem with.

    by LiberalCanuck on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 10:33:49 AM PST

  •  I think he would have had Ohio for Bush (0+ / 0-)

    Like Obama, I think Bush actually consistently led most of the final OH polling.

    It was Zogby and the "undecideds rule" that we clung to hoping for a Kerry win.

  •  RCP avg was dead on in Ohio (0+ / 0-)

    RCP said 2.1 for Bush in Ohio and the result was 2.0.  Check the last polls there - ALL were Bush except ONE. And the one outlier was USAToday/Gallup, which had Kerry winning by 4.  In PA, USAToday/Gallup was the only pollster to show Bush winning!  Utter crap in both directions!

    But looking it over reminds me of how much I cherry-picked polls. I went on hunches and hopes. Never again. I'm a quant now and I trust people like Wang and Silver.

    •  This (0+ / 0-)

      That's exactly what I've been thinking about for the past few weeks.  When I read the GOP commentary on this race, it reminds me exactly of how I (and many here at DK) were rationalizing our belief in a Kerry victory.

      God, I hope they are as crushed as I was at the end of that night.

  •  Only Zogby had Kerry up in Ohio... (0+ / 0-)

    while Dubya maintained around a 2% average at RCP.

    this was before Zogby was thoroughly discredited and RCP was a right wing hack site, but I remember being on this very site hoping Zog was right. Everyone else had Bush up nationally as well. Looking back, it would have been an easy call for someone like poblano.

  •  RCP final chart (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    buckstop

    The Real Clear Politics final chart in 2004. Conservatives today are still using the "Polls are Wrong!" mantra, but, the polls have not had a catastrophic error in Presidential politcs since Truman-Dewey. Even, in 2000 the polls showed basically a tied race.

    Here is he 2004 RCP final:

    Poll    Date    Sample    Bush (R)    Kerry (D)    Spread

    Final Results    --    --    50.7    48.3    Bush +2.4

    RCP Average           48.9            47.4     Bush +1.5

    Marist    11/1 - 11/1    --    49    50    Kerry +1
    GW/Battleground    10/31 - 11/1    --    50    46    Bush +4
    IBD/TIPP    10/30 - 11/1    --    50.1    48    Bush +2.1
    CBS News    10/29 - 11/1    --    49    47    Bush +2
    Harris    10/29 - 11/1    --    49    48    Bush +1
    FOX News    10/30 - 10/31    --    46    48    Kerry +2
    Reuters/Zogby    10/29 - 10/31    --    48    47    Bush +1
    CNN/USA Today/Gallup    10/29 - 10/31    --    49    49    Tie
    NBC/WSJ    10/29 - 10/31    --    48    47    Bush +1
    ABC/Wash Post    10/28 - 10/31    --    49    48    Bush +1
    ARG    10/28 - 10/30    --    48    48    Tie
    CBS News/NY Times    10/28 - 10/30    --    49    46    Bush +3
    Pew Research    10/27 - 10/30    --    51    48    Bush +3
    Newsweek

  •  we were just as bad in 2004 (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    SLKRR, Plu, slothlax

    as the freepers and redstaters are now, trying to 'unskew' polls for their undercount of young voters and dem demographics.

    we were WRONG then, just as they are wrong now.

    We have no desire to offend you -- unless you are a twit!

    by ScrewySquirrel on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 11:08:16 AM PST

    •  Yeah, But At Least Our Delusions Were (0+ / 0-)

      ...grounded in kernels of semi-plausibility.    Cell phones WERE undercounted and pretty much every political pro DID believe that incumbents broke to the challenger.  We were wrong but we were trying to be rational.   The freepers are just asserting that the polls are wrong without even trying to come up with a plausible reason...

  •  2004 Ohio final polls (0+ / 0-)

    RCP got this one pretty close. Only CNN had Kerry winning.

    RCP Average: Bush Kerry
                         48.8 46.7 (Bush +2.1)

    Final Polls:

    Zogby | 10/29-11/1

    601 LV

    4.1

    49

    43

    -

    Bush +6
    FOX News | 10/30-31

    700 LV

    3.0

    50

    47

    -

    Bush +3
    SurveyUSA | 10/29-31

    816 LV

    3.5

    49

    47

    -

    Bush +2
    CNN/USAT/Gallup | 10/28-31

    1111 LV

    4.0

    46

    50

    -

    Kerry +4
    Ohio Poll/UofC | 10/27-31

    877LV

    3.3

    50.1

    49.2

    -

    Bush +0.9
    Mason-Dixon | 10/27-29

    625 LV

    4.0

    48

    46

    -

    Bush +2
    Rasmussen | 10/25-10/31

    600 LV

    4.0

    50

    46

    -

    Bush +4
    Clev. Plain Dealer | 10/26-28

    1500 LV

    2.6

    48

    45

    -

    Bush +3

  •  I thought Nate was (0+ / 0-)

    running his site back in 2004?

    •  No (0+ / 0-)

      Definitely not. I believe he started publicly analyzing polls on DKos during the 2008 primaries.

      Proud supporter of actually prosecuting rape, even if it requires extradition!

      by zegota on Tue Nov 06, 2012 at 11:41:50 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

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