Monday, May 23, 2016

State of the Race: 169 Days To Go

86 (or so) Delegates To Go: So very close...

Though the delegate totals differ from source to source (for various reasons) I'm gonna go with CNN's because Hillary is a bit further along by their why not! Whatever the exact numbers, we're in a bit of a holding pattern in this race as we're still a couple of weeks away from the final contests.

But keep this date and exact time in the back of your mind: June 7th @ 8pm EST. That's when the polls close in New Jersey...and it might just be the exact moment that news sources will report that a woman will win the nomination of a major party for the first time in American history. 

To break it down, let's assume that Clinton wins a few delegates in the U.S. Virgin Islands on June 4th, at least 30 delegates (but probably more) in Puerto Rico on June 5th, and perhaps a few more superdelegates along the way. That means she'll be in the range of about 30-50 delegates short on June 7th...and New Jersey alone has 126 pledged delegates at stake. 

And since she's going to win that state...probably by a lot...that's the ballgame. 

Don't Panic Over Close Clinton-Trump Polls: Oh no, Clinton is now roughly tied with Trump in the national polls! But I thought she was up by 13 points in the CNN poll just a couple of weeks ago? Yes, both these things are true. However, take a deep breath and keep a couple of things in mind:

-Trump has already locked up his nomination and is uniting the Republicans while Clinton is still dealing with a divided party and plenty of grumpy Sanders supporters. So this is basically the worst possible time to get a read on the general election. But the good news is that this is a temporary situation that should be resolved when Obama, Biden, Warren and (eventually) Sanders endorse Clinton following her win on June 7th. And after the convention in July...look out!

-Polls in late May are just about the least accurate anyway:
Statistically, we are coming up on what should be the point at which polls are farthest-off from the eventual Election Day outcome. That's what Princeton University's Sam Wang found in a recent analysis.

"Truly, now is the single worst time to be paying attention to fresh polling data," the neuroscientist and polling expert wrote in a Sunday blog post.

With the election 169 days away, he added, we're almost at the time of the year where polls tend to deviate most from the eventual general election outcomes.

Past elections give all kinds of anecdotal evidence of this. Maybe the most popular example is Michael Dukakis' 10-point lead over George H.W. Bush at this point in 1988.
And Yet...: Even during this rough patch, Hillary has kept the lead in Ohio and Florida and has it tied in Virginia:
Ohio (CBS/YouGov): Clinton 44%/Trump 39%
Florida (CBS/YouGov): Clinton 43%/Trump 42%
Florida (Gravis): Clinton 46%/Trump 42%
Virginia (Roanoke College): Clinton 38%/Trump 38%
If this is a "floor" for her state numbers, there's no telling what the ceiling might be.

And further still: The new ABC/Washington Post poll shows Trump leading Clinton by 3 points, but look at these amazing internals:
Why voters in this poll would choose someone who isn't even qualified is odd, but really it's just one more reason to not get too worked up about general election polls right now.

Also, now we know why Hillary has been saying flat-out that Donald is unqualified for the job: The American people already know it, and she's not going to let them forget it over the next five 1/2 months.

And If You're Still Worried: Listen to these guys...
Moody’s Analytics is forecasting that the Democratic nominee, who is widely expected to be Hillary Clinton, will win the presidency in November over presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump.
“President Obama’s approval rating has crossed over the important 50 percent threshold for the first time in almost four years,” said Dan White, a Moody’s economist who oversees the model.

Aside from rising gasoline prices, a drop in Obama’s approval rating is the only model variable that could possibly move far and fast enough to push the model in Republicans’ favor by November, White said. ...

Moody’s latest model shows for the third straight month that the Democratic nominee would take 332 electoral votes compared with 206 for the Republican nominee. The model has predicted every election correctly since it was created in 1980.
As always, try to ignore the noise and keep on fighting with confidence, joy and determination.

Because we're going to win this thing.


  1. and this polling is probably the worst, with sanders going so nutty, trying to drive down her positives because that's his only case. And Trump getting the 'winner' bump. It all comes down to how much dark side do Americans have, I don't think W is a fair example, not only was Gore running with Liberman, two unpleasant scolds who anyway won, but W looked like a nice regular guy and Trump is well-known 'dark,' I believe there are not enough who will bring themselves to vote for him in the General. The winter is not coming. We don't need to be afraid.

    1. Really, all you need to look at is the "unqualified" numbers for Trump. They are truly disqualifying. And that's not counting all of Donald's other baggage. Get the Democrats united and it's game over.

  2. Hillary's campaign also is well ahead of Trump's in GOTV and fundraising. I just saw a quote from a GOP donor who said Trump needs to pony up $500 million on his own before he can expect help. And since he's not nearly as rich as he says he is ...

    1. Yep. Just one more reason to feel good about all this!