Will Predicts EC Landslide for Romney

Via the Daily Caller:

Add Washington Post George Will to the landslide column along with Fox News Channel’s Dick Morris and the Washington Examiner’s Michael Barone.

On this weekend’s broadcast of “This Week with George Stephanopoulos” on ABC, Will revealed his prediction and added a bonus surprise by saying traditional Democratic state Minnesota would go for Romney as well.

The number:  321-217.

I can understand predicting a Romney victory.  After all, if Ohio goes to Mitt, that might be enough.  What I do not understand is predicting a landslide in Romney’s direction unless one is sprinkling in more than a little hope into the equation or if one thinks that pollsters, as a class, have just gone off the rails in a profound and game-changing way.

Further, calling MN for Romney strikes me as more than a stretch.  The RCP average has Obama as +5.8 and shows Romney never leading that average (or really being all that close) going back to May (when the chart states).  Will even notes that Minnesota has gone Democratic for the last nine elections, but thinks that the marriage amendment on the ballot will give the election to Romney.

For what it is worth, Nate Silver puts the odds of an Obama win in Minnesota at 99%-1%.  If Romney wins Minnesota it would be clear evidence of serious flaws in Silver’s methodology.   Silver’s polling average has Obama at +7.2. 

At the moment, however, I am sticking with Silver’s data over Will’s hunches.  (The funny thing is, however, is that Silver will be excoriated if he gets MN wrong, but Will will likely receive no criticism at all about this guess—although perhaps this is fair:  we all know that pundits are just guessing and so it really doesn’t mater…).

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2012, Public Opinion Polls, Quick Takes, US Politics
Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is Professor of Political Science and Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Troy University. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter

Comments

  1. Argon says:

    George Will, the guy who also can’t understand global warming trends. Not so good in the man department, despite his love of baseball.

  2. Nickelstar says:

    But what are the consequences for being wrong among these people? Brownie emerged from underneath his rock and dared to criticize the federal response to Sandy. Frankly, he has blood on his hands from Katrina. This crowd has no shame and they get away with it.

  3. Franklin says:

    Will even notes that Minnesota has gone Democratic for the last nine elections, but thinks that the marriage amendment on the ballot will give the election to Romney.

    That nonsense may have worked 8-12 years ago, but a few things have changed since then.

  4. OzarkHillbilly says:

    What??? People still read George Will?

  5. PJ says:

    @Steven L. Taylor:

    Further, calling MN for Romney strikes me as more than a stretch. The RCP average has Obama as +5.8 and shows Romney never leading that average (or really being all that close) going back to May (when the chart states). Will even notes that Minnesota has gone Democratic for the last nine elections, but thinks that the marriage amendment on the ballot will give the election to Romney.

    Also, Minnesota doesn’t have a Republican Governor, so there’s no chance that Romney could win the state even by illegal means.

  6. al-Ameda says:

    I watched Will’s disgraceful prediction this morning on ABC.

    It appears that Will has decided (like Michael Barone) that being thoughtful and analytical in the service of one’s political philosophy is liberal, he has signed on with the (brain)deadheads.

  7. Geek, Esq. says:

    Will’s job is to be a lying hack. See also Morris, Dick; Rove, Karl.

    Contrast with Michael Barone, whose job is to be a delusional, bitter, washed-up hack. If he has any integrity he’ll retire.

  8. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Franklin:

    That nonsense may have worked 8-12 years ago, but a few things have changed since then.

    Heh. My sis lives in MN and she and her husband used to be fairly conservative (very religious). Used to be every time I saw him (an agricultural engineer) he would complain about union work rules and I, a union carpenter (Local 2298) would have to explain to him not only how they work, but WHY they work. I would eventually get the skeptical look and then the conversation would move on. In the last four years, the conversation has changed.

    Why? My sis is a …. hold your breath…. public school teacher. In the past four to 6 years he has heard his wife demonized every which way but Sunday. She works 12-14 hrs a day for 9 1/2 months a year at what most would consider slave wages. Yes, she gets a 2 1/2 month vacation. And yes she gets a decent pension (god willing)…..

    But they said she was a nothing but a succubus.

    He took that personal.

    They did not just lose her vote. They lost his as well.

  9. gVOR08 says:

    Will, Morris, and Barone are delusional, lying hacks, or know something we don’t know about vote suppression and Diebold. Sorry, false dichotomy. They’re lying hacks no matter what else may be going on.

  10. Curtis says:

    If we don’t want to have hacks making predictions, we need to quit talking about their predictions.

    There need to be some consequences for being wrong.

    I don’t think a Romney win, even in a place like MN, would be an indictment of Silver and his model so much as the polls that are the raw materials. If Romney wins MN despite never leading in a single poll, it is tough to blame any of the poll aggregators.

  11. @Curtis:

    I don’t think a Romney win, even in a place like MN, would be an indictment of Silver and his model so much as the polls that are the raw materials. If Romney wins MN despite never leading in a single poll, it is tough to blame any of the poll aggregators.

    A legit point, and actually one I plan to make in a post on the overall subject. Still, my point here is that if he is going to make 99-1 predictions and is wrong, he is going to take heat–and far more than Will ever will.

  12. Ron Beasley says:

    Dick Morris has always been a snake oil salesman, Will and Barone seem to have morphed in the same.

  13. @Ron Beasley: Indeed. I find that to be an unfortunate development.

  14. An Interested Party says:

    Dick Morris has always been a snake oil salesman, Will and Barone seem to have morphed in the same.

    Look at the politicians they root for…of course they have to be snake oil salesmen…

  15. legion says:

    George Till, like Dick Morris, isn’t make predictions so much as auditions – he’s offering up whatever remains of his credibility in the hopes of getting further payments from whatever the GOP mutates into after November. Of course, Morris doesn’t really do much _except_ give his worthless opinion on b-string Fox News shows, so I’d say his flavor of mouthwash is no longer in demand… Hopefully, Will will soon join him offering rough trade for a bottle of wine outside Rupert Murdoch’s gates.

  16. Gromitt Gunn says:

    Honestly, Steven, I think this is an “Overton Window” type of thing. If these guys predict a close call for Romney, and Obama wins, then the only real reaction is “Huh, well, we said it was going to be close.” If you predict a Romney blowout and then Obama wins, then the conversation becomes “How can this be? Clearly the Democrats *must* have cheated!”

  17. David M says:

    A GOP landslide makes no sense, as Romney probably has a ceiling under 300 EVs. So that’s the marker I’ve been using to gauge whether or not an EV prediction is serious or if the person is simply clapping louder for the GOP.

  18. Stonetools says:

    Frankly, after this election,people will just stop paying attention to George wills, Peggy Noonan, and the lie. Their reliance on ” gut feelings” ( wishful thinking) will be be seen as much less dependable and realistic than Nate Silver’s work, and they will be ignored and ridiculed going forward.

  19. john personna says:

    The pundits will shrug their shoulders and say “hey, we tried.” They know they are just campaigning, and afterwards they’ll cop to it.

  20. Jim Henley says:

    I think there could be gamesmanship here too. If Will calls for an Obama win in the same range as his colleagues and is right, he’s just another consensus prediction if the consensus holds after election night. If he calls for a big Romney win and Romney loses, his failure gets discounted for his partisanship. “Well of course George said that. You can’t hold it against him.” But on the outside chance Romney scores a big win, Will can claim bragging rights.

  21. Todd says:

    I agree with Gromitt, it’s just setting up the air of illegitimacy when President Obama wins. There are quite a few Conservatives I know who are absolutely convinced that the electoral projection map on that unskewed polls website is what the “data” actually shows. When the election is over, and the map ends up looking a lot more like what the “liberal” models are projecting, there’s going be rioting in the streets .. lol, ok not really … but rioting on Facebook for sure.

  22. Tsar Nicholas says:

    321 for Romney might seem quite ambitious, especially in various corners of the Internet, but it’s actually within the ballpark of prospective results. Take the Bush states from ’04, subtract NM, but add WI, NH and PA. Definitely possible. Shit, perhaps even probable. Regarding PA, I had thought up even until last week that it was a Quixotic waste for Team Romney, but the reality of it all is that it’s seriously in play. Bill Clinton is not going to be there today for the cheesesteaks, if you catch my drift.

    I don’t see how Will conjures up MN going red. To be honest if MN goes red perhaps the Mayans were onto something. We’re talking here about a state that voted for a professional wrestler to be its governor, for a SNL reject to be its U.S. Senator, and they have the dubious distinction of being the only state to have voted for Carter, Mondale and Dukakis!

  23. Cheric says:

    I would really like to sit down with a rational Democrat who is or voting or has voted for Obama and pick his/her brain as to why Obama would be so much better than Romney. There seems to be a lot of vitriolic rhetoric passed back and forth from both sides; nothing can be gained from it but ill will and misunderstandings. One issue in particular: I have a problem with Obama and his handling of Libya…how do those who favor Obama feel about it?

  24. Richard says:

    Lets do one thing, everybody that commented comeback and analyze your previous thoughts in light of the final results. It would be good if all of us can be reasonable about politics after this election is over. One important thing that could come out of this is trying to weed out the predictors and polls that were just tricksters trying to depress the other side’s vote or as some of you say paid hacks. As of Monday, November 5th it looks like Romney has 26 states, AL, AK, AR, AZ, CO, FL, GA, ID, IN, KS, KY, LA, MS, MO, MT, NE, NC, ND, OK, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, WV & WY with 257 Electoral Votes.
    Leaning Romney: in order of strength IA, WI, OH, NH
    Leaning Obama: MN, MI, PA, NV
    Obama, CA, CT, DE, HI, IL, MD, MA, NJ, NM, NY, OR, RI, VT, WA & DC (plus 7 yet to be named)
    Don’t forget Romney only needs 269 while Obama needs 270.

  25. Richard says:

    @Richard: This is like one of those pictures where you have to find the things that are wrong. Romney 27 not 26 so far. Obama has ME too. Now that makes up the 50 States.

  26. Nikki says:

    @Richard: Beg pardon, but according to Nate Silver, IA (81.2%) , WI (94.5%), OH (86.8%), NH (80.2%), VA (72.6%) and CO (69.7%) all lean Obama. Please let us know from where you are getting your data because “your gut” doesn’t count.

  27. grumpy realist says:

    @Cheric: One very big thing is the President’s chance to put a few more justices on the Supreme Court.

    I’m not interested in seeing more Scalito clones on the bench. (For someone who squawks so much about “originalists”, Scalia certainly does a lot of interpretation when it comes to decisions in certain areas–say, bankruptcy.)

  28. David M says:

    @Cheric:

    I would really like to sit down with a rational Democrat who is or voting or has voted for Obama and pick his/her brain as to why Obama would be so much better than Romney….I have a problem with Obama and his handling of Libya…how do those who favor Obama feel about it?

    Quick answer, I want to see Obamacare implemented and do not want Medicare and Social Security ended or privatized. As far as Libya goes, it’s a dangerous country and the consulate was attacked and unfortunately some Americans died. But it’s not a big deal, or even worth caring about, as the GOP complaints about it are ridiculous. And really, I’m supposed to think the GOP cares about 4 deaths after Iraq?