Take Two for November 2, 2012

The tricky business of analyzing poll data

California Voters Head To The Polls For Midterm Elections

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

A voter places her ballot into a ballot box after voting for the midterm elections at Los Angeles County Lifeguard headquarters on November 2, 2010 in the Venice neighborhood of Los Angeles, California.

Today, the Washington Post calls the presidential race a contest "as close as any in recent history." NPR reported this morning on some potential nightmare outcomes, including an electoral college tie. 

Looking around at all this with a little amusement is Princeton neuro-scientist Sam Wang.  His day job is studying the cerebellum, but his hobby is analyzing poll data.

Wang publishes the Princeton Election Consortium, a blog that's popular with "poll geeks" and is now getting a lot of attention from general political junkies. And he has a great track record.

In the 2008 election, his calculation missed the actual electoral vote count by...one electoral vote.  Sam Wang joins us from Princeton.


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