Election Postmortem: The Polls Were Right
The country has elected Barack Obama as president and broken the recent cycle of close contests decided by one state. The Democrats have expanded their margins in the House and Senate but with less of a landslide than many predicted and have thus been denied the fabled “filibuster-proof” majority.
The pre-election polls, once again, were right. There were no great surprises, with the only mystery coming in a handful of states that were too close to call in the late polls.
- Virginia: Obama won 52-47, a slightly wider margin that the 4.4 final RealClearPolitics average.
- Indiana: RCP calls it for Obama at 50-49 with 99% in. CNN says it’s too close to call. RCP had McCain winning by 1.4 with two of the five polls tied, one with an Obama +1. [UPDATE 12:51 – CNN has called it. Obama won by 22,000 votes out of 2.7 million cast.]
- Missouri: Still too close to call, although McCain leads with 100% of precincts in. Presumably, we’re waiting to count the absentee ballots. RCP had McCain winning by 0.7 and 4 of the 6 polls in the average had a tie. Truly a dead heat.
- North Carolina: Neither RCP nor CNN are calling it, although Obama’s got a slight lead. RCP had McCain winning by 0.4. Again, a dead heat.
Every other state — including the key battlegrounds of Florida, Ohio, and Pennsylvania (a Blue state that somehow became a “battleground” because it was the McCain camp’s only hope to eek out a win) — went as predicted.
Can we finally kill the meme about skewed polls?