Saturday, October 30, 2004

Election prediction for Eric Zorn

Several weeks ago, Matt Gross asked for an election prediction. At the time, I called the popular vote 51.5% for Kerry to 47% for Bush, and gave Kerry an electoral college win of 289-249. (If you care to see how I got to 289, see here.)

Eric Zorn of the Chicago Tribune wants us local bloggers to make our predictions; deadline’s tomorrow. In particular, Eric wants to know what the spread between Obama and Keyes will be (my prediction: 44%; Obama 70% – 26%), as well as the electoral spread between Bush and Kerry.

First off, for the part that matters: I’ve revised my thinking, I think Kerry wins the electoral vote, 285 – 253. Here’s how I see it shaping up:

(To be honest, this is a bet of a hedge; I think it quite likely Kerry holds on to Minnesota, and that would mean a 20-vote swing in the EV. But the way Eric is scoring our predictions, I’m being a bit more cautious.)

The states that have changed for me since my early October prediction: Minnesota and Wisconsin (a wash, each has 10 electoral votes), and Hawaii (Bush appears to have picked up a small lead in this 4 EV state). I’d really like to see Kerry hold onto Minnesota, which would put him at 295 and allow him to lose Ohio or Florida but still come out on top.

If you’re looking for daily updates on the latest polls (and the impact on the electoral vote), check out and Slate’s Election Scorecard. Both do a good job of deconstructing who’s where, and let you judge for yourself the relative merits of any particular pollster. And Eric just recently pointed to local site who’s also tracking the daily shifts. Worth a visit.

I will freely admit to a subjective tilt to my prediction. I want John Kerry to win, and am viewing many of the most recent polls through a favorable filter. At a party last night, I was talking with a die-hard Republican, and I told her I had just two worries: that the electoral college results in a tie, or that Kerry wins the popular vote by a wider margin than Al Gore did but President Bush manages to squeak out a victory in the electoral college.

Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments; I look forward to seeing what others are thinking.


  1. Good analysis Rick. I share your biased hopes. It will be great when the only poll that really matters is finished on Tuesday night. Let's just hope the votes are counted. The worry I would add to your list is that Republican voter suppression, dirty tricks, and helpful Secretaries of State and Judges allow them to repeat 2000 by stealing victory from the clutches of defeat.

  2. Eric Zorn's Blog Bowl II Predictions For Illinois Bloggers

    Eric Zorn of the Chicago Tribune asked Illinois bloggers to make predictions and submit them to him tonight. The predictions are for 1. The final percentage gap between Barack Obama and Alan Keyes (e.g., 37) 2. The final electoral vote...

  3. Popular Vote Prediction
    Bush 55%
    Kerry 45%

  4. As featured in Newsweek and on the Atrios blog
    The Chicago Chapter of 2020 Democrats introduces
    the first in a weekly series of…

    Drinking Liberally
    Promoting democracy one pint at a time.

    Wednesday November 3 @ 7:30 pm
    The Red Lion, 2446 N Lincoln, 2nd Floor
    Just around the corner from the Fullerton L Stop

    Come celebrate (or cry in your beer) the day after
    the election with fellow progressives.

    All you need to do is show up and drink

  5. We got our but kicked on this one...