The bad news: a little of the luster has faded from “Nate Silver predicts…”.

But just a little.

The better news:  the odds of the GOP increasing its majority next month are the same as the odds of losing control of the Senate.

As of Wednesday afternoon, elections forecaster Nate Silver’s site FiveThirtyEight gives Republicans a better chance of reaching 54 seats or more than he gives to Democrats for taking over the majority.

Specifically, as of this writing, the site’s “classic model” gives Republicans a 20.3 percent chance of reaching at least 54 seats, which compares with an 18.4 percent chance of Democrats taking over control of the Senate.

While holding the Senate was always likely, increasing the majority in a midterm – with an “unpopular” president, to boot – would be pretty unusual.  The fact that it’s crept into the conversation lately is not something I expected.

7 thoughts on “Turnaround

  1. Ah — so Democrats chances of winning the Senate have fallen by more than their chances of winning the House have risen, but their chances of winning the House have risen nonetheless. Got it. As usual, Independents will determine the outcome in may of these races.

  2. I don’t trust polls because I don’t trust poll takers to ask honest questions and I don’t trust poll answerers to give honest answers. I certainly don’t.

    Mitch has done yeoman work showing how poll takers carefully word questions, and strategically position questions, to push respondents into giving the answer the person paying for the poll desires. And that’s not to mention poll takers who intentionally mark “undecided” instead of “Hell No” to further skew the results and create a bandwagon effect.

    From the other end, conservatives know that people who hold conservative values are targets for Social Justice mobs to publicly ruin their lives (pizza parlor, cake decorator, lion hunter, Google employee). So conservatives have become adept at hiding their opinions during water cooler conversations at work, during social activities, during family gatherings. We keep our mouths shut until we get into the polling place, then let our votes speak for us.

    That’s why Trump’s election was a surprise to people who relied on polls. They knew they had cheated when asking the questions; they didn’t know we had cheated when answering them. That’s why they’re furious at Deplorable People – we beat them at their own game.

    I think poll takers like Nate Silver are beginning to suspect that anybody who openly answers the questions is a Liberal, and anybody who hedges is conservative, so the support for conservative candidates is far greater than their polling responses would seem to indicate, the question is how much? That’s why pollsters are having such a hard time with their models. The questions are rigged and the answers are lies, so how do you calculate the truth?

  3. I don’t, in general, have to avoid indicating my political preferences, although as a “conservative” I just do because we don’t think politics or religion is something that everyone needs to know/talk/yell about to the exclusion of anything else. That said, I never answer polls. In short, I agree with JD.

  4. JD: Opinion polls measure the public’s satisfaction with its ignorance.

    NW: Can’t both be true?

  5. I’m not certain we they do polls. The close contests are what people are interested in & polls don’t predict the outcome of close contests very well.

  6. My view would be that Trump’s prime goal is to avoid something approaching catastrophic defeat for the Republicans in the mid-terms because this would open to way for impeachment and would also make it harder for him to fire Mueller. One has only to see how he’s reacted to recent market falls to see how much he would do to avoid any serious oil shock (as in the 70s) because this would lead to a market crash.

    This gives the Saudis a get away with murder card — and they have likely calculated that. Trump can only go so far before the markets start to go belly up — and so do his chances. Because the Republicans are now so closely tied to Trump, they are not going to diverge from his point of view — meaning, IMO, that whatever good intentions they may have are likely to be eviscerated in the light of ruthless electoral calculation. Of course, History won’t be forgiving — but….

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