Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Final Senate Predictions

I spent 40 minutes in line this morning to get into my polling place in one of the reddest counties in Florida.  When I arrived 10 minutes after the polls opened there were already 120 people in line ahead of me.  When I got to the front of the line there were 100 people behind me.

By comparison, in 2004, there were 20 people in line when I arrived at the polls.  2004 was an election with an Even turnout.

I will be making my final national election prediction in the next post, but I want everyone to understand that I am basing this prediction on an Even turnout.  If turnout is D+3 then some of these seats, like Wisconsin, won't fall to us.  But I view any D+ result to be unlikely right now.  On the other hand, if we have an R+5.8 results, then every competitive seat will be won by the Republican.  These races are very dependent on turnout.  In all races but two, there will be no Obama/GOP Candidate voters, but there will be Romney/Dem Candidate voters.  GOP turnout is critical to lifting these candidates to victory.  Romney will run ahead of the numbers for these candidates.  The only exception to this is Heller in Nevada and Brown in Massachusetts.  Both will out perform Romney in their races.

Races we will win
  • Nebraska 100% -  With GOP enthusiasm where I think it is, Kerrey has no chance of winning this race.  He was close in one poll, but that poll assumed Democrat enthusiasm that isn't there.
  • Montana 80% - Rehberg is ahead by 4 in the latest poll and almost at 50%.
  • Nevada 100% - Heller remains well ahead, even with Obama leading in the polls there.  This race is still over.
  • Wisconsin 90% - Romney is looking very strong in this state, and is confident of winning it.  That means Thompson will win too
  • North Dakota 90% - With GOP turnout, Berg will win this.
Races where it is competitive
  • Indiana 60% - I still think Mourdock will win this, but polling shows him down.  I have a hard time believing that Romney will get the GOP turnout he does, but Mourdock loses.
  • Massachusetts 60% - All polling now shows Brown with a small lead of 1 or 2 points.
  • Virginia 70% - Romney is winning this state, no question about it.  The question is by how much.  If turnout is high, Allen will win.  If Romney wins by his margin with NoVa Independents then Allen will have a harder time.
  • Ohio 60% - After looking deeply into Ohio, I think Mandel will win this race.  The polls are just not telling the true story, and Brown needs the early votes just like Obama does.  Those votes aren't there.  Mandel is polling behind Romney by about 2 points, so with a Romney win of 5% or so, Mandel will also win.
  • Pennsylvania 60% - Romney pulled over 30,000 at his event in Bucks County.  Smith has been blanketing the airwaves in PA for months.  I think this race looks a lot like Toomey's in 2010, and Smith gets a 2% win.
  • Missouri 50% - Similar to what is going on elsewhere, I think Akin will win this.  Romney holds a commanding lead in the polls, McCaskill is really disliked in the state, and the evangelicals are going to turn out.
Races we will likely lose
  • Florida 20% - Mack might pull this one out.  All the polls show Nelson leading by about 5.  But if Romney can win by 7 to 10 points, then he could pull Mack with him.
  • Michigan 10% -  No polling, but I see no reason to believe Hoekstra can win.
  • Maine 10% - The Independent will win this race.  He could decide to caucus with the GOP, especially if it means being in the majority.
  • New Mexico 10% - No change, I think Wilson will lose.
  • Connecticut 10% - I'm seeing no evidence that McMahon is going to close the deal.  And she could end up with Dems and Independents voting against her to keep the Senate out of GOP hands.  I think the unpopularity of Romney in the East that Gallup showed makes this a hard seat to win.

Probability of at least a tie in Senate = 95.1%
Probability of winning the Senate = 87.5%
Most likely outcome = 9 wins

Final prediction GOP wins 9 of these races and holds the Senate with 53-47 seats.


  1. Wow! Thanks Dave for your solid work! Hoping for a longshot miracle that Sandy somehow screws up Gillibrand and Wendy Long pulls out a freak victory in New York.

    Yeah, I know. But 53-47 is what we need and it gives a margin of safety against the squishes like Brown, Murkowski and Collins.

    "J.J. Sefton"

  2. Thanks Dave, if Romney has a big win and the Senate goes 53-47 I think liberals will have a large exodus to someplace like France :)

    I'm not as optimistic as you are, I see a decent Romney win and think we'll see around a 50-50 Senate. If I was going to call our losses compared to your list of wins, I would say probably Mandel in Ohio, Smith in PA, and Akin in MO, but I'd could easily see all of those races coming down to basically a coin toss.

    I love hearing the turnout anecdotes. I've honestly in all my life never seen enthusiasm like this for a Republican Presidential candidate.

    Neighborhoods in my area are covered in Romney signs and nearly every stop light has a Romney bumper sticker. I think I've seen maybe 2 Obama yard signs this cycle and 90% of the Obama bumper stickers I've seen are faded 2008 stickers. 2004 was supposedly the high water mark, but Romney surpasses that by leaps and bounds.

    One crazy anecdote, a guy actually used a plane to write "Romney" in the sky all over the city. Clearly, this wasn't a campaign sanctioned advertisement, just an enthusiastic Republican pilot.

  3. Hah. I wonder if Dave will use even turnout for his Presidential prediction too. I'd bet on R+

  4. From your lips to God's ears, Dave. Your analyses have been comforting to this Republican in NYC.

    - Throat Wobbler Mangrove

    1. Where are you? I'm down in NYU. Ugh!

      "J.J. Sefton"

    2. Murray Hill area. NYU must be intolerable now.

      - Throat Wobbler Mangrove

    3. Guys, I think we all met at the moron get together 'round the *last* election.

    4. Not me. I wasn't really following AOSHQ back then so much. However, I'd be up for a meet up after this election.

      - Throat Wobbler Mangrove

    5. I think after this is over, I need to make a point of meeting up with the Jacksonville Morons.

  5. Sadly, I'm having a harder time believing the "all the polls are wrong" thing here on election day. I thought at some point, reality would hit and the pollsters would decide they needed to get real and protect their reps. That never happened. Why? As far as predictions, I went back and looked at National Review predictions in 2008. Sadly, quite a few predicted McCain would pull it out narrowly. But he got destroyed. Only one person predicted that outcome. So I conclude that people tend to predict that their guy is going to win. I do not understand how the polls can be rationalized. But my hope is fading on the notion that Romney is about to have a landslide victory. I just don't see any indication of anyone involved who thinks that. Why wouldn't they have some idea about this if it were in the cards?

    1. Ras party ID 10/2008: -7.1
      Ras party ID 10/2012: +5.8

      You are looking at extraneous info, not the data we've been focusing on here.

  6. I don't see Arizona in your list.

  7. Thanks for your solid work, Dave... here's to hoping you are right. Not only for our sake, but even for the sake of the Obama voters, who are blissfully unaware they are voting for the demise of a free and prosperous America.

    1. Good point. We are saving their retirement, social safety net, and medicare from bankruptcy too.

  8. Heard Rush talking about the CNN poll and that buried in it was a little nugget no one discussed.

    5% of Democrats will cross over and vote Romney. If that stat is true, then the rest is academic and Mitt wins big.

    THANKS DAVE!!!!!

    J.J. Sefton