I’m excited to announce the debut of our 2016 TPM Electoral Scoreboard. In 2012 the Scoreboard was our most popular tool of the entire election season. The Senate Scoreboard will debut soon. (Click on the image below to go to the Scoreboard page.)
The Scoreboard runs off polling data from PollTracker. And unlike many other predictive maps it runs purely on poll data. It debuts today with Clinton at 271 electoral votes, Trump with 179 and 88 in the Toss-up category.
Let me quickly address a few points about our methodology.
First, as I said, the data is derived from PollTracker, the poll aggregating service that had the best overall accuracy of any of the big three poll aggregators in 2012.
Second, it’s polls only. Other maps combine polls with historical data, economic predictors, etc. We don’t do that. We go only with the current polling data. This isn’t better or worse than the other approach. It’s just different. The only way we use historical data is for the relatively small number of states that have either no polls or very few. Those we benchmark against 2012 results. But there are very few of those and they’re all states that are either very blue or very red.
Third, the Scoreboard is meant to be highly reactive and limit the number of states in the toss-up category. To be a toss up a state either has to be literally tied or have a candidate with less than a 2 point lead in the PollTracker Average. Others might say that less than a five point advantage amounts to a toss up. But we think this conveys more information. You can always hover over a state for the average or click through on the state to go to the PollTracker race page for all the polls and interactive trend chart of the race.
In the coming days we’ll be adding links to the Scoreboard and other topline campaign data. So you’ll always find it ready at hand on the site.