And it’s Here! Nate Silver’s 538 Primary Forecasts!

by naderhader –

nate silver 538

I’ve been waiting on this analysis with bated breath, and it’s finally here… ‘s 2016 Primary Forecasts!

Nate Silver (formerly known here as Poblano) and his compatriots at 538 are known for rational, data backed analysis of all kinds of stuff, but what I always head for is the political writing and forecasting.

Nate accurately predicted outcomes in 49 of the 50 states in the 2008 election, and his fame exploded from there. He’s awesome.

This year, the predictions are very exciting, especially for polling nerds and political junkies (I’m looking at YOU).

I’ll soon cut to the chase, but wanted to make a note — these predictions are ‘polling plus’ predictions, and are snapshot predictions as well. They can and will change as polls inevitably tighten as we close in on the contests in Iowa and New Hampshire. Additionally, the models they came up with are very interesting, as they are showing potential RANGES of voting shares for each candidate (for a breakdown of all the tasty nerd details, see here).

So, take these with as much salt as you’d like — the authors are very frank about how challenging forecasting primaries are.

In their words:

Polls shift rapidly and often prove to be fairly inaccurate, even on the eve of the election. Non-polling factors, particularly endorsements, can provide some additional guidance, but none of them is a magic bullet. And races with several viable candidates, like the one the Republicans are contesting this year, are especially hard to predict.

So, back to the chase. As it stands now, predictions are (in the “polls +” version):

Iowa Dem caucus:

  • Hillary Clinton with a 73% chance to win.
  • Bernie Sanders with 27% chance to win.
  • O’Malley — well. Let’s just look away, shall we?

New Hampshire Dem primary:

  • Hillary Clinton with a 53% chance to win.
  • Bernie Sanders with a 47% chance to win.
  • Just saying holy lord this is a nailbiter.

Iowa Republican caucus:

  • Ted Cruz with a 49% chance to win.
  • Trump with a 28% chance
  • Rubio clocks in at 18%

N.H. Republican caucus:

  • Trump with a 39% chance to win (I weep).
  • Rubio at 23%
  • Cruz at 13%
  • And notably, Kasich is at 11%. Huh. Who knew.

Important notes for the passionate advocates:

  • Bernie DOES look to have a little momentum going into this, so we should expect this to change.
  • 538 uses a poll weighting method — it takes into account a poll’s track record, the methodological standards, and is adjusted for ‘house effects’ seen in the past.
  • More recent polls are weighted more, obvs.
  • The “polls plus” version takes into account endorsements and national polls, and tries to consider the effects that Iowa and NH would have on contests in other states.

So, discuss away, friends, but please, click on over to see the whole thing. It’s really cool stuff.

And as a favor, let’s try and stay civil. This is a contest we all care about, but we can still be good people. Wouldn’t your chosen candidate want it that way?

Unless…you’re for Trump. In that case, I’m calling security, and go fuck yourself, mmkay?


Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos