Pundit Who Was Dead Wrong In 2012 Is Now Questioning Nate Silver

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Josh Kraushaar was wildly off the mark with his projections for the 2012 presidential race, but the National Journal editor is hardly chastened.

Calling himself a “numbers guy,” Kraushaar offered up a rebuttal on Tuesday to Nate Silver, the polling guru who nailed the outcome of the 2012 contest in all 50 states.

In his column, Kraushaar questioned the current Senate forecasts from Silver’s FiveThirtyEight and the New York Times’ Upshot.

According to Kraushaar, the statistical models are underrating the GOP’s chances in Iowa and overrating Republican prospects in Michigan.

He believes that two Democratic incumbents generally considered safe in this year’s midterms, Oregon’s Jeff Merkely and Virginia’s Mark Warner, are actually vulnerable and that the models are underrating carpetbagging New Hampshire Senate hopeful Scott Brown. And in true pundit fashion, Kraushaar urged caution to those betting against Arkansas Sen. Mark Pryor (D) but also wrote that no one should “overestimate his chances, either.”

The column led to a cascade of mockery from Harry Reid spokesman Adam Jentleson, who promptly went to the archives to remind his Twitter followers of Kraushaar’s track record.

There was Kraushaar, predicting GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney would triumph in Florida, Virginia, North Carolina, Colorado, Iowa and “one of the Rust Belt firewall states” en route to the White House.

Romney, of course, lost all of those states save for North Carolina.

And there was Kraushaar, writing that Minnesota could be the state that surprises. Silver gave President Obama a 99.7 percent chance of carrying the state. The incumbent ultimately triumphed there comfortably.

Kraushaar indicated that Jentleson’s mockery was evidence that the column “hit close to home,” but not all of the rebuttals were partisan in nature.

The Upshot’s Nate Cohn soon noted that Kraushaar would have lost a lot of money in 2012 betting against the models.

Silver told TPM in an email that “the results speak for themselves” and opted not to comment further.

But not all of the reviews were negative. Fittingly, Kraushaar’s column was applauded by none other than Karl Rove, the GOP strategist who rejected the results of the 2012 race in a memorable Election Night meltdown on Fox News.

Kraushaar’s errant predictions aren’t limited solely to the electoral arena. He wrote last year that Democrats may soon join Republicans in calls to repeal Obamacare, a premonition that grows more ridiculous by the day.

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Notable Replies

  1. Silver should remember how he was humiliated on Fox Not the News when he denied Ohio went for Ob…What?..Sorry, that was somebdy else.

    Never mind.

  2. he should start a polling firm with dickhead morris.

  3. Yeah, but what does Dick Morris think?

  4. He’s an alternative reality universe version of a numbers guy, like Paul Ryan is.

  5. The underlying premise in this story seems to be that these guys should be ashamed of being wrong. But right/wrong is not the point, but rather increasing clicks and eyes, and they seem to be doing just fine, with a little assist from TPM.

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