Nov
12
2014

The DSCC listened to Nate Silver*, and now they must face the consequences in LA-SEN.

Ed Morrissey over at Hot Air is wondering why there was no money allocated for Mary Landrieu’s runoff:

This runoff was a flat-out certainty for months, which is why the GOP and its allies planned for big spending in Louisiana past Election Day. They put money aside even while aggressively spending against Democratic incumbents — like Landrieu herself, Mark Pryor, Mark Begich, Kay Hagan, and Jeanne Shaheen and Mark Warner in narrow losses. …Yet no one in Democratic circles prepared for the four-week campaign to save Landrieu from Barack Obama and herself.

Well, perhaps it’s due to a bad call on the DSCC’s part. Let us pretend, for a moment, that the results in 538’s last Senate ranking were correct, and reflected election night results. Well, in that scenario the GOP is not at 53 Senate seats and counting: we’re at 50. That’s because in that scenario we lost North Carolina and effectively Kansas (we will no longer pretend that Greg Orman was anything but a Democrat), and Georgia is on its way to a runoff election. As is Louisiana, of course; but in that situation a Democratic strategist could legitimately conclude that it would be simple enough to fund an emergency drive to take/flip the seats and retain the Senate. It would not be a hard sale, given the knife’s-edge nature of the scenario – which was, mind you, also the Democrats’ public worse-case scenario.

Only… nope!  Things got worse for Democrats, hilariously enough. North Carolina flipped, Kansas stayed red, and Georgia isn’t running off anything.  And, oh, yeah, the shocking loss of the Florida, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, and Wisconsin governor races did very little to make Democratic donors feel great about themselves, either.  Moral of the story: you can’t bank optimism.  Or possibly just Be prepared.

No, wait, progressive Democrats hate the Boy Scouts.  Forget I used that one.

Moe Lane (crosspost)

*This is not actually Nate Silver’s fault. It would be fairer to say that they listened to selected portions of what Nate Silver was saying.  I find that I am enjoying watching Silver’s models crash and burn a good deal less than I thought that I would, given that the man himself seems to becoming weary of being treated as a guru by rigid partisans who were only semi-literate in math.  Besides, Silver was in fact careful to keep his own partisan instincts in check for this one.

5 Comments

  • BigGator5 says:

    The only “shocking” thing about the Florida Governor’s race was the fact that it was as close as it was, not the outcome. The primary numbers must have scared the hell out of Florida Dems and put the fear of God into them. In the end, it was not enough. South Florida underperformed for Crist and the Panhandle carried Rick Scott over the finish line.

  • JEM says:

    It’s a beautiful thing that Soon-To-Be-Ex-Sen Landrieu has to flee from the New York jackhole, my expectation is that she came begging for a little flexibility on Keystone and he told her that the DSCC donors were going to hold him – and his minions – to strict account.

    I want to see them all burn in hell, but I wouldn’t much mind seeing them suffer a bit first.

  • DemosthenesVW says:

    Not sure how Silver’s models crashed and burned, as you put it. On Election Day, his model predicted that the highest-percentage outcome was that Republicans would wind up with 53 seats. The final count looks like it will be 54 — that’s not too bad. (Larry Sabato, whose approach is more holistic, made a final call of 53 seats.) And he got there by aggregating polling data that has since been revealed to be…let’s just say non-optimal.

    • Moe_Lane says:

      Silver’s Senate prediction for Kansas was absurd; that seat was never going to go to the Democrats (and I said so all along); North Carolina was more forgivable, but the prediction of a Georgia-SEN runoff perhaps less so. But when it came to *governorships* Silver’s only comfort was that he wasn’t the only one who got taken to the cleaners. But he did (and so did I, frankly).

      As I said, I’m not pleased this happened: Silver’s analyses this year were largely free of the smugness that categorized his 2008 and 2012 coverage.

      • acat says:

        So .. Silver made his predictions solely on the polling, without considering other factors, Moe?
        .
        Illinois is weird in that there are two parties, but they are not the GOP and the Dems .. they are the Combine and the anti-Combine. GOP or Dem labels do not matter.
        .
        I cannot tell, yet, whether Quinn and Rauner both represented the Combine or whether this was an actual choice.
        .
        That the IL-GOP let perennial failure Jim Oberweis take on serial fabulist Dickhead Durbin may indicate the Combine fix was in .. but it isn’t clear.
        .
        Mew

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