Twelve years ago, pollsters began to notice that millions of people were abandoning traditional land phone lines for cell phones. Even then, we were wondering about the effect on polling. In Michigan last night, we may have seen it:
Bernie Sanders made folks like me eat a stack of humble pie on Tuesday night. He won the Michigan primary over Hillary Clinton, 50 percent to 48 percent, when not a single poll taken over the last month had Clinton leading by less than 5 percentage points. In fact, many had her lead at 20 percentage points or higher. Sanders’s win in Michigan was one of the greatest upsets in modern political history.

Both the FiveThirtyEight polls-plus and polls-only forecast gave Clinton a greater than 99 percent chance of winning. That’s because polling averages for primaries, while inexact, are usually not 25 percentage points off. Indeed, my colleague Nate Silver went back and found that only one primary, the 1984 Democratic primary in New Hampshire, was even on the same scale as this upset
Sanders is the perfect candidate for an error of this type, as his support is demographically concentrated among the young. Many of the youngest voting generation have never had a landline. Telephone polls that aren't adequately capturing cell phones just don't know how to reach and count these folks.

Nevertheless, thanks to the rigged nature of the "Democratic" primary, Clinton came out ahead in delegates.

Of course, superdelegates can change their votes. Put that way, the race is a lot closer:
True and accurate numbers are the following: after “Super Saturday,” Clinton has 663 pledged delegates. Sanders has 459 pledged delegates. Clinton needs 1,720 delegates to win. Sanders needs 1,924 delegates to win.

Sanders is a few hundred delegates behind Clinton, and Clinton has over a thousand delegates to go before she clinches the nomination.
Sanders still has a chance to pull this thing off. At the least, he's going to drain Clinton of money and energy all the way to the convention if he keeps winning at this pace. At most, he'll pull off a historic upset.

1 comment:

Assistant Village Idiot said...

If only Bernie had made friends with Loretta Lynch years ago - or had something on her now.