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On the Razor's Edge: The Forecast of the Primary Model

  • Helmut Norpoth (a1)
Extract

With another Bush looking weak, many Democrats are feeling good about their prospects in November, even without the dream of a job in the White House for themselves. Yet this time, a Bush won't be on the presidential ballot in November, nor will someone closely affiliated with his administration, such as the vice president. Whatever the Bush legacy may be, the 2008 presidential election shapes up as an open-seat contest. A key predictor of the model used here to forecast the outcome of that contest is the showing of the presidential nominees in primaries (hence the sobriquet Primary Model). Since American elections in November are typically preceded by primary elections earlier in the year, it is natural to inquire whether the voting in presidential primaries is a leading indicator of the vote in the general election? Remarkably so, as it turns out. How the presidential candidates do in primary elections foretells their prospects in the November election with great accuracy.

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References
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Gaines, Brian J. 2001. “Popular Myths about Popular Vote-Electoral College Splits.” PS: Political Science and Politics 34 (March): 72–5.
Jones, Randall. 2002. Who Will Be in the White House? Predicting Presidential Elections. New York: Longman.
Norpoth, Helmut. 1995. “Is Clinton Doomed? An Early Forecast for 1996.” PS: Political Science and Politics 28 (June): 201–7.
Norpoth, Helmut. 2000. “Of Time and Candidates: A Forecast for 1996.” In Before the Vote:Forecasting American National Elections, ed. Campbell, James E. and Garand, James C.. Thousands Oaks: Sage Publications, 5781.
Norpoth, Helmut. 2001. “Primary Colors: A Mixed Blessing for Al Gore.” PS: Political Science and Politics 34 (March): 45–8.
Norpoth, Helmut. 2002. “On a Short Leash: Term Limits and Economic Voting.” In The Context of Economic Voting, ed. Dorussen, Han and Taylor, Michaell. London: Routledge, 121–36.
Norpoth, Helmut. 2004. “From Primary to General Election: A Forecast of the Presidential Vote.” PS: Political Science and Politics 37 (October): 737–40.
Norpoth, Helmut, and Rusk, Jerrold G.. 2007. “Electoral Myth and Reality: Realignments in American Politics.” Electoral Studies 26 (2): 392403.
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PS: Political Science & Politics
  • ISSN: 1049-0965
  • EISSN: 1537-5935
  • URL: /core/journals/ps-political-science-and-politics
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