Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Newt doesn't win Florida

I am waiting to hear from my detractors about my post last week in which, a week ahead of the event, and after considering carefully various sophisticated metrics, and constructing a wide variety of charts and graphs,  I called the Florida Republican primary race for Newt Gingrich. Having been inspired by both CNN and Fox News having called South Carolina before a single vote was tabulated, I decided to follow suit.

If Anderson Cooper could do it, so could I.

But, alas, Newt Gingrich did not win the race. Instead Mitt Romney, one of the remaining two monogamous candidates left in the race, was victorious (Santorum was the other monogamous candidate, but something about his monogamy was not, apparently, quite as appealing to Florida Republican voters).

"What happened?" my detractors will ask. "You blew it. How can you show your face after this ignominious prediction?" Well, they wouldn't say exactly that, partly because I don't think they know what the word "ignominious" means.

Still, I would like to address what went wrong.

I have thought a lot about my method of predicting the outcome of the Florida race over the past 5 minutes, and I have conducted a thorough review over that time of the methodologies I employed in making my prediction. After doing this extensive analysis and producing several long reports, I have determined why my forecast was incorrect.

The problem was that my method was entirely too scientific.

I explained when I made the prediction that, if my prediction was false, it would therefore be falsifiable, and since (as many of my detractors like to point out) falsifiability is a sufficient criterion for a method being scientific, I will consider it proven that my method was, in fact, scientific.

So from here on out, I will go back to the method that sustained me so well when I predicted in 2008, the day after the Iowa primary, that Obama would win the nomination and the general election, putting him hin the presidency; the method that stood me in such good stead (if I can talk about my own state now) when I predicted, on the basis of a few conversations and my gut feeling, that Greg Stumbo would win the leadership race in the Kentucky State House for Speaker.

What method was this? Prophecy. Plain and simple. I will now go back to divine inspiration as my chief mode of political forecast.

You can all go back to your homes now.


Lee said...

It looks like the GOP is going for the prototypical GOP-establishment, bland, middle-of-the-road blah candidate in the time-honored tradition of Dewey/Ford/Bush/Dole/McCain.

It will be his job to smile a lot, give speeches, and lose to the Democrats this fall in the polite, gentlemanly Republican way.

The GOP establishment circled the wagons in Florida. Newt didn't know what hit him. They would rather lose with Romney than win with Gingrich -- assuming Gingrich could win, which is assuming a fair amount.

The GOP is obliged to sound like they hate big government. The GOP establishment is that subset of Republicans for whom sounding like they hate big government is a pretense.

Lee said...

> Dewey/Ford/Bush/Dole/McCain

Sorry, did I leave out Eisenhower and Nixon?

Eisenhower, at least, was a war "hero" -- not to disrespect Ike but just to point out he was a general, not a fighter, and wasn't forced to be heroic with his own life.

Nixon was another middle-of-the-road, if not liberal, Republican, but still he was able to inspire hatred from the Left that, to William Buckley at least, seemed oddly out of proportion with the man himself.

I guess the Left never forgave him for Alger Hiss.

Anonymous said...

I guess Newt needs more casino money.

Art said...

Martin, I'm a bit surprised that you're letting an untidy fact (the numbers of votes for Romney and Gingrich) convince you to concede the FL primary to Romney. When it comes to other matters (the age of the earth, climate change, common ancestry, to name a few), facts don't seem to make much of a difference to you. Why should they in this case?

I think you're giving up too easily.

Martin Cothran said...


Okay, let's just take one of those: the age of the earth. What is it about the age of the earth which is inconsistent with the facts?

Art said...

As Agent 86 would say: "Ah, the old argue with incomprehensible questions tactic ..."

I notice that Newt isn't going to let the facts prevent him from getting some of those FL delegates. That's the attitude I expect on this blog.