Wednesday, February 10, 2016

How'd I do on those NH primary predictions?

On the voting results, I wasn't bad. I was right that Trump would come in first (although the polls would have to be pretty wrong for him not to), and that Kasich would come in second (which was not clearly predicted by the pre-primary polls). I overestimated the Rubot's prospects, so he ended up coming in fifth, not third (behind Jeb! How embarrassing is that?). That meant that my prediction of Cruz in fourth was wrong too because he took the #3 slot that I had given to Rubio. And of course, on the Democratic side, I made the obvious prediction that Sanders beats Clinton and the obvious turned out to be right. So I was mostly (though not completely) right in my prediction of what NH voters would do.

I think what I got wrong was the media consensus reaction. It is still early. Maybe that consensus has not fully congealed yet. But already my thoughts about it from yesterday seem to be out of date. I thought the media people would discount a Sanders win because everyone could see it coming and despite the fact that VT and NH are pretty different politically, people outside New England can't tell those two apart. Also, you could argue that while the general electorate in those two states are very different (VT being very liberal and NH being moderate conservative), the democrats in NH are probably more like VT democrats than democrats in general.

But I digress. Anyway, despite all my reasons for thinking that a Sanders win in NH would be discounted by the media, that does not seem to have happened. This morning's headlines all seem to trumpet a Sanders blowout (which it was. It just was an unsurprising blowout that one can easily argue does not tell us much about how Sanders will do in states in SC and NV)

On the Republican side, there is a lot more focus in the media on the Trump win than I expected. I guess I assume that Trump's NH win (which was clearly predicted by the polls) would be treated as Cruz's win in Iowa. That is, not treated like a win at all. With Cruz's IA win, the only story seemed to be the fact that he took down Trump, with most of the attention focused further down the results list, past the vanity candidacies of Trump and Cruz, to Rubio, the highest placing "real" candidate. So I assumed that Trump's NH win would be treated the same way, people would ignore his first place finish, and instead focus on the top vote-getter of the establishment people, who I corrected predicted would be Kasich. Again, it is early, but that does not seem to be happening. Kasich is getting more attention (how could he not? The guy got almost no serious attention until now), but the focus in the Republican race really seems to be panic about Trump, not the rise of frontrunner Kasich.

So while I was mostly right about the voting results, I seem to be pretty wrong about the media's take on those results. It still remains to be seen if the dropouts happen as I predicted in #6. I think this is a strong sign that I will get that one.

UPDATE re: prediction #6.
I win! Look at my prediction #6 again. Here is at least one from List A, and here's at least one from List B. Woo-hoo! USA USA!