Free Markets, Free People

Larry Sabato

Handicapping the 2012 election

Two folks I respect and enjoy reading when it comes to election analysis are Nate Silver and Larry Sabato.  Both have a lot of experience, seem to have their heads on pretty straight and explain their methodology and reasoning fairly well.  Both are also a rare breed in that they don’t seem to let whatever political biases they have interfere with their analysis.

Recommended reading today from both of them.

Silver talks about how he has come to do his analysis of presidential races.  It’s a very interesting read for the political junkie and even for those who are less involved but want some way to do their own analysis of the goings on.  Probably the most controversial aspect of his analysis is what he calls the “the ideological positioning of the Republican candidate” (note: obviously, if it was a Republican in the White House, he would be talking about the ideological positioning of the Democratic candidate).  As he notes, it’s a bit of an intangible, but I think he has a point.  He also has “extreme” ratings for each of the current candidates and explains what that means in the big scheme of things.  

Interesting stuff which I’m sure will make for a good discussion.

Sabato, on the other hand, talks about how it is way too early to draw the curtain down on the GOP nominating process, even though (and I’m as guilty as anyone) many of us want to call it “over”.  Much of that is just wanting to get the process over with in what seems to be an eternal campaign.  But, as he points out, history says “not yet”.  The primaries are the crucible and surprises can and do happen.

Anyway, good stuff for political junkies.  A couple of sources for some fun discussion.  Don’t hesitate to weigh in.


Twitter: @McQandO

Election 2012–the shape of things to come?

Larry Sabato has released a first look at how things appear today in reference to the 2012 Presidential election.  As he says, it’s only use is to establish a “baseline” from which to watch the events and the trends over the next year plus before the election.




As it stands now, the electoral votes for the Safe, Likely and Leans numbers are 247 for Dems and 180 for Reps.  Note the toss up states (111 EVs).  They say a lot. 

Remove the leaners and you’re at 196 D and 170 R.  That, at least to me, is a much more likely place to start.  The leaners and tossup states are going to be the obvious places to watch.  Not including them leaves 172 EVs to be claimed.  You need 270 to be elected.

So … have fun and speculate away.