Of course we all know the outcome now, and many news outlets are simply confessing their total predictive ignorance of what happened, including this website. Before the election, Huffington Post editor Ryan Grim infamously defended his publication’s 99 percent probability of a Hillary Clinton victory.
On the night of the election, Grim apologized.
.@NateSilver538 Yes. You were right that there was far more uncertainty than we were accounting for. I apologize. Gonna stick to punditry.
— Ryan Grim (@ryangrim) November 9, 2016
Grim had skewered FiveThirtyEight’s Nate Silver’s (“Nate Silver is Unskewing Polls–All Of Themn–In Trump’s Direction“) more uncertain prediction, which gave Trump better than a 1 in 4 chance.
By monkeying around with the numbers like this, Silver is making a mockery of the very forecasting industry that he popularized.
Not to take this lying down, Silver responded in no uncertain terms, mostly for Grim failing to give him the journalistic necessity of an advance “care to comment?” call or email. Silver did his job the best he could. We were all wrong.
Going forward, political pollsters are going to have to recalibrate and invent new ways of gathering and interpreting popular opinion after 2016’s failures. It’s refreshing that at least one liberal editor admitted the error, while the rest of the media is encouraging street protests because Hillary Clinton won more of the popular vote.
For the record here, so liberals can understand:
1) The popular vote does not determine the winner of a U.S. presidential election, and never has, by design of our founders and our Constitution.
2) Hillary Clinton did not win an outright majority of the national popular vote. Neither did Trump. Clinton won 47.8 percent, to Trump’s 47.2 percent. A mere 668,483 votes separate the two (as of this writing). That’s 0.52 percent of the nation. Hardly a mandate for Trump, but certainly beyond claiming that Hillary “should have won.”
If only the rest of the liberal press would be so honest as Ryan Grim.