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The Job of President and the Jobs Model Forecast: Obama for '08?

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  01 October 2008

Michael S. Lewis-Beck
University of Iowa
Charles Tien
Hunter College and The Graduate Center, CUNY


The statistical modelers are back. The presidential election forecasting errors of 2000 did not repeat themselves in 2004. On the contrary, the forecasts, from at least seven different teams, were generally quite accurate (Campbell 2004; Lewis-Beck 2005). Encouragingly, their prowess is receiving attention from forecasters outside the social sciences, in fields such as engineering and commerce. Noteworthy here is the recent special issue on U.S. presidential election forecasting published in the International Journal of Forecasting, containing some 10 different papers (Campbell and Lewis-Beck 2008). Our contribution in that special issue explored the question of whether our Jobs Model, off by only 1 percentage point in its 2004 forecast, was a simple product of data-mining (Lewis-Beck and Tien 2008).

Copyright © The American Political Science Association 2008

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