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Pundit Prediction Scorecard: Rating 25 election oracles

Posted by Mark Leccese November 7, 2012 10:34 AM

I compiled a list of pundit predictions the day before the election using Google searches, an article by Evan Hughes at The Awl, an article by Adam Pascik at New York Magazine, and The Washington Post Outlook’s Sixteenth Crystal Ball Contest.

A pundit needed to predict the number of electoral votes for each candidate — not just a win or a loss — to be included in this scorecard. My deadline for predictions was the night before the election.

As of 10 a.m. Wednesday morning, no winner had been declared in Florida. Obama led Romney by 47,000 votes out of 8.3 million cast.

Since the pundits made their predictions based on all 50 states, for the purposes of this scorecard I need to put Florida’s 29 electors voters into either Obama’s column or Romney’s column. Obama holds a lead in Florida, so I’m putting those votes in his column only for the purposes of this scorecard.

FINAL TALLY
OBAMA: 332 Electoral College votes
ROMNEY: 206 Electoral College votes

Not one of the 25 pundits got it exactly right, but some came close and some appeared to have made their predictions by examining chicken bones and the position of the stars. Here are the results, which I have sorted into categories.


DELUSIONAL (wrong by more than 100 electoral votes)

Dick Morris: “On The Hill” column in The Hill, Oct. 30: Romney 325 (wrong by 119)

George Will, on “This Week with George Stephanopoulos,” Nov. 4.: Romney 321 (wrong by 115)

Glenn Beck, GlennBeck.com, Nov. 5: Romney 321 (wrong by 115)

Michael Barone, Washington Examiner, Nov. 2: Romney 315 (wrong by 109)

Jim Cramer, host of CNBC’s “Mad Money,” Nov. 3: Obama 440 (wrong by 108)

Newt Gingrich, on FoxNews, Oct. 25: Romney “300 plus” (wrong by 100 "plus")


NOT EVEN CLOSE (wrong by 50-99 electoral votes)

Larry O’Connor, Editor-in-Chief at Breitbart.TV, Nov. 5: Romney 295 (wrong by 89)

Kevin Eder, Media Research Center, Nov. 4: Romney 281 (wrong by 75)

Karl Rove, Wall Street Journal, Oct. 31: Romney 279, “probably more” (wrong by 73 and “probably more”)

David Wiegel, political reporter, Slate.com, Nov. 4: Romney 276 (wrong by 70)

Dean Chambers, UnskewedPolls.com, Nov. 5: Romney 275 (wrong by 69)

FULL ENTRY

About the author

Mark Leccese, a journalism professor at Emerson College, covered Massachusetts politics, business and the arts for more than 25 years as a newspaper reporter, editor and magazine writer. He has More »

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