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Super Tuesday Live Blogging

Topics: 2008 , Barack Obama , CBS , Chuck Todd , CNN , Exit Polls , Hillary Clinton , Mark Lindeman , Mason-Dixon , MSNBC , Pollster.com , Rasmussen , Suffolk , SurveyUSA

We are live blogging tonight and posting the most recent estimates for each race derived from the official public exit poll tabulations as they are posted online. The table will update regularly (though you will need to reload the page to see updates), and live-blog updates will appear below in reverse chronological order below the table and its caveats below. All times are Eastern.

(If you do not see a chart, click here.)

stliveblogdems.png stliveblogreps.png

CAVEATS: The "exit poll estimates" here are extrapolated from publicly available tabulations; they are not "insider information" about up-to-the-minute projections. These estimates are never based upon interview data alone. Tabulations posted as the polls close incorporate pre-election expectations (based on pre-election polls); during the night, the tabulations are updated (occasionally, not continuously) to reflect vote count data. The results posted here may not always reflect the very latest public information, although we hope to keep them close at least through midnight Eastern. Keep in mind that for the first few hours after the polls close these will be survey based estimates, and surveys are subject to error (some random, some from other sources). We encourage you to visit the complete tabulations available at the following links from CBS, CNN and MSNBC.

Candidates projected as winners by the networks are in bold.

1:19 - It is late, we are exhausted and the results seem reasonably settled, so we are going to call it a night. Sometime later today, the exit pollsters will update each cross-tabulation so that the overall result will match the actual vote count. As such, we will probably not do a final update of these tables.

Please join me in thanking Mark Lindeman (who crunched the numbers and did all of the updates) and Eric Dienstfrey (who set up the table so Mark could update it). And thank you Pollster.com readers for nearly 74,952 unique visits and 372,000 page views yesterday. Goodnight!

1:00 - Just to update the earlier discussion of delegates. On MSNBC, Chuck Todd just reported delegate "estimates" for tonight that include California and New Mexico: 841 for Obama, 837 for Clinton, with what he described as a "plus or minus" of 10 on the California delegates (and as Anon notes in a comment, "that's just the [estimated] number of delegates won tonight, not a running total"). I'm assuming other news organizations are or will be reporting similar estimates; please post those to the comments if you catch them.

12:56 - Back online. One commenter is reporting problems viewing the table with the Firefox browser. We tested it in several browsers before going live and I have been viewing on Firefox all night. If anyone is having trouble, please email us with your setup info (to questions at pollster dot com).

12:08 - I will be off the grid for about 30 minutes, although Mark Lindeman will continue to post updates.

12:05 - Anon posts some numbers gleaned from past exit polls:

  • 2006 Dem gubernatorial primary - 12% Latino, 8% black (LAT)
  • 2004 Dem presidential primary - 16% Latino, 8% black (via CNN)
  • 2000 Dem presidential primary - 17% Latino, 11% black (via CNN)
  • 1998 Dem gubernatorial primary - 12% Latino, 14% black (LAT)

12:00 - Mark just posted an update of the CA tabulations. One thing to keep in mind is that the exit poll analysts need hard vote counts to determine two very important things: The appropriate mix of early and polling place votes, and the correct regional distribution of the turnout. Adding hard data will either firm up the racial composition numbers reported below, or change them. My guess is that their level of confidence in those racial composition numbers will determine when they "call" a winner in CA.

11:55 - "Pragmatic Progressive" corrects me on the Chuck Todd delegate report I posted at 11:25. Todd projected a total of 1140 delegates, but (assuming I grabbed the right numbers) there are 1,681 delegates up for grabs tonight. Todd's estimate does not yet include roughly 546 delegates from California and some of the other Western states.

11:41 - As of the first report, the California exit poll shows Latinos contributing a larger percentage of the vote, and African Americans a smaller percentage of the vote, than indicated in the pre-election polls.

Latinos are currently showing as 29% of the Democratic vote in California on the exit poll tabulations. In the final pre-elections polls they were:

African Americans are currently showing as 6% of the Democratic vote on the exit poll tabulations. In the final pre-election polls they were:

  • 12% on Field
  • 9% on SurveyUSA
  • 9% on Mason-Dixon
  • 8% on Suffolk

As elsewhere, Clinton wins the vast majority of Latinos in California (65% as of now) and Obama wins a greater share of African-Americans (78%), so if those composition numbers hold, it bodes very well for Clinton. Update: Just noticed that SN made a similar observation in the comments as I was typing up these numbers.

11:25 - Daniel T made this point about an hour ago in the comments:

"[W]inning" states in the primary means nothing since no democratic states are winner take all. The real key is the delegate count and while Clinton is still leading there, the night is still young.

He is right, of course, which is why I will pass on something that Chuck Todd just reported on MSNBC. Their estimates are that when all votes are counted, the delegates at stake tonight will split 595 for Obama and 546 for Clintons, so "we're looking at an even split" in the total delegate count tomorrow. [Correction: I heard that wrong. Todd's totals apparently do not include CA and other western states -- see my 11:55 update].

11:12 - A quick summary table of the current tabulations among white voters as reported on the exit polls (and these are not extrapolations but the report among whites in each state):

02-05 exits by race.png

11:05 - Mark L just added the CA estimates.

10:50 - Oops. Looks like we overlooked New Mexico for the Democrats. Updating shortly. Thanks to Anon and Daniel for the edit.

10:40 - Mark L just posted more recent updates from most of the states. The additional actual vote counts have changed some of the estimates considerably. For example, Clinton's margin in Massachusetts the margin is now roughly 15 points.

9:32 - Another apparently slow-to-update estimate is New Jersey. MSNBC has called the state for Clinton, but the update has not yet updated since we last checked at 8:30 and found Clinton receiving less than a percentage point more than Obama.

9:12 - For what it's worth, regarding the spin and counter-spin now underway over Massachusetts: We reported only a handful of pre-election polls there in recent weeks. The Suffolk University/ News Poll had the two candidates essentially deadlocked (Obama 46%, Clinton 44%), Rasmussen Reports (a week ago) had Clinton leading by six points (43% to 37%) and Sur veyUSA had Clinton leading by 17 percentage points (56% to 39%). The current estimate is Clinton by 5 (50% to 40%). Of course, that estimate will likely change as more hard count comes in. [UPDATE - Not so fast...the 10:36 update increases the Clinton lead to roughly 15 points (56% to 41%)].

9:05 - Josh asks:

MSNBC just called MA for Clinton... any idea what they believe that you don't at this stage?

What Josh noticed (that MSNBC called Massachusetts while the estimate we had here still showed Obama slightly ahead) underscores the point I made at 7:30. The exit pollsters update the cross-tabulations less frequently than the estimates they use to make projections. They updated the MA cross-tabulations online just as the call was going on the air. And the updated estimate in Massachusetts -- which is now undoubtedly based on a lot of actual vote count in the sampled precincts -- has Clinton ahead by roughly five points.

8:56 - Two things: First, as should be obvious, we are not bothering with information that you can get faster and better from the networks. Second, I have been watching MSNBC, and just heard our friend Chuck Todd reading projected delegate splits from various states. Needless to say, those counts are the most important numbers tonight.

8:51 - Just saw this comment posted earlier by our colleague Marc Ambinder about those leaked early exit polls (that appear, not here, but on sites like the one who's name rhymes with "budge"):

Fellow journalists and pundits. I have the same data you have... and I would just remind all of you that the first wave of exit poll data is not reportable or reported for a simple reason: the sample sizes are not large enough to accurately tell us much of anything, unless one candidate is getting, like, 80% of the vote.

That's about right.

8:45 - One note: An informed source advised earlier today that the polling place "exit" interviews will be supplemented tonight with telephone surveys conducted among early and absentee voters by the network consortium in California, Arizona and Tennessee.

8:42 - In the comments, Daniel T suggests:

it would be helpful if you but in italics or bold the number of the "projected" winner for that state

Great suggestion - consider it done (literally). We have highlighted candidates projected as winners by the networks (or at least one of them) in bold.

Josh asks:

Would it be possible for you to highlight the cells in the spreadsheet according to who is leading in each state? It would make it easier to follow as the estimates shift throughout the
evening.

Possible, obviously, but we would rather not, as we're really not sure that someone "leading" is really leading (we do not have access to the confidence level assigned to each margin). Daniel T also asks:

Could you add a column that shows the number of delegates atstake in each state. I think there is room. It would be helpful.

Sigh. Yes, it would, but that one will have to wait for Super Tuesday 2009 (or perhaps next week). The table ain't broke, so we are not going to try to fix it. But thanks for all of the suggestions.

8:27 - So I've alluded to the fact that these estimates improve over the course of the evening. What does that mean? It means that as the polls close, the estimates are based on some combination of results from the exit poll interviews and (believe it or not) pre-election poll averages. Once the polls close, the interviewers attempt to obtain actual results for their sampled precinct (or another "reporter" attempts to get the results from the county or state registrar). The exit poll analysts use these numbers to do two things: First, they gradually replace the exit poll results in their estimate models with the actual count precinct-by-precinct. They also calculate the "within precinct error" statistic for each state (or regions with each state - not sure) that are used to adjust exit poll results from the other precincts where actual count is not yet available.

The exit pollsters also have "reporters" who gather hard vote counts from a much larger random sample of precincts. All of this data goes into the computer models and is used to create various estimates of the vote. The "decision desk" analysts look at all of those estimates in deciding whether to "call" a race.

A separate operation within exit-poll-central takes whatever estimate they deem most trustworthy and uses it to weight the subgroup tabulations that we can read online. And we take those tabulations as they appear online extrapolate the estimates above from those tabulations. They typically do one updates 30 to 60 minutes after the polls close and another two or three over the course of the evening. All of this is a long-winded way of saying that what you are seeing here is not as current as the information the network analysts are using to make their calls.

8:13 - Mark L has just posted more estimates, and it is worth stressing something important: Most of these margins of very close, well within the "margin of sampling error." Needless to say, the networks are not yet ready to project and will make their calls as hard returns become available. A difference of a point or two is really meaningless at this point.

8:00 - Polls just closed in Alabama, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Jersey, Oklahoma and Tennessee. We should have updates for these soon.

7:51 - "Anon" comments:

you'll get slightly different numbers depending on which breakdowns (age,
race, geography, etc) you plug into the equation. your numbers are prettyclose to mark's, though i don't know which one(s) he's using.

Thanks for asking. You remind of two things I neglected to mention. First, Anon knows that the brains behind these tabulations is Mark Lindeman, an assistant professor of political studies at Bard College in Annandale-on-Hudson. Mark is the one doing the extrapolating. The table that runs with a Google Docs spreadsheet, was put up by the indefatigable Eric Dienstfrey. Thank you Mark and Eric!

Second, Mark has put together a program that does not one, but more than 20 extrapolations and then calculates the average of all of them. The point is that the extrapolation introduces rounding error, so averaging a bunch of calculations minimizes that potential.

7:44 - So what's the point of posting the estimates extrapolated from the exit poll tabulations? One reason is that those estimates, imperfect as they are, provide what is arguably the best projections available of the final result. Again, and we cannot stress this enough, those estimates are subject to change and should improve over the course of the night. But in watching the extrapolated estimates after the polls closed since in all of the primaries so far this year, I can say that they provide a far more accurate data on the outcome than the first waves of actual vote that crawl across the bottom of the network broadcasts.

7:38 - The Associated Press has its first review of the national exit poll data up (via The Page).

7:31- A certain web site (rhymes with "Grudge") has a bunch of leaked exit poll estimates in states whose polls have not yet closed. I'd recommend to those curious about those leaked numbers -- and everyone else, for that matter -- to review my post from earlier today. Remember, it's just a survey, the networks rarely "call" an election on the exit poll alone unless the leader's margin is *very* large (i.e. a "lead" of 3-4 points isn't enough to assure a victory) and the early estimates (as well as the tabulations we're extrapolating from above) are usually weighted by something called the "composite estimate" which includes an average of pre-election polls.

One more thing to keep in mind: The leaked numbers from the West coast states are extremely preliminary. Remember, it's only 3:30 in the afternoon there. These are mostly from the first wave of reported exit poll data (there are three). Experience has shown that the first two waves can be unreliable, but the numbers usually settle down in the third wave that reports just before the polls close.

 

Comments
anon:

Thank you! I can now put my Excel spreadsheet away!

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pragmatic progressive:

Have they already updated the data? I used MSNBC's exit poll data, and got 65.8 for Obama, 1.4 for Edwards, and 32.2 for Clinton in the Democratic race and 32.9, 29.5, 4.5, and 31.0 for Huckabee, McCain, Paul, and Romney in the Republican race.

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anon:

you'll get slightly different numbers depending on which breakdowns (age, race, geography, etc) you plug into the equation. your numbers are pretty close to mark's, though i don't know which one(s) he's using.

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pragmatic progressive:

I used the male/female splits, if Mark wants to compare his numbers to mine.

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Mark Lindeman:

thanks, prag. It's always possible that my data source could throw me a curve ball and I would start parsing gibberish. Otherwise, this approach should either be pretty robust, or break down completely. We should know in a few minutes!

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The final results are in!

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pragmatic progressive:

Cool, thanks for the info on how your splits are done! I'm looking forward to the batch of results at 8 PM EST...

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Daniel T:

Great chart. Could you add a column that shows the number of delegates at stake in each state. I think there is room. It would be helpful.

Thanks for all the work!

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Daniel T:

Also it would be helpful if you but in italics or bold the number of the "projected" winner for that state.

Thanks again.

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Andrew:

The results for Iowa are in: Obama won.

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Mark Lindeman:

Just for fun: the early update gives Obama (rather than Clinton) a very narrow edge in Missouri. This is, to use a term of art, So within the margin of error!

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Josh:

Would it be possible for you to highlight the cells in the spreadsheet according to who is leading in each state?
It would make it easier to follow as the estimates shift throughout the evening.
Thanks for the great coverage!

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Adam:

Drudge removed exit polls? I got them before they removed them from the page, but after a few minutes I refreshed, and they were gone. Still had time to write down those results though :)

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Josh:

MSNBC just called MA for Clinton... any idea what they believe that you don't at this stage?

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pragmatic progressive:

The importance of taking margin of error into account was just made apparent. MSNBC just called Mass. for Clinton even though the exit polls show Obama with a VERY narrow lead. Now, I'm waiting for the first "Nevada" of the night, where one of the Dem candidates wins more delegates despite narrowly losing the popular vote.

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Super Duper Tuesday Picks

17-1 so far...being live-blogged as well...

http://blogcritics.org/archives/2008/02/05/004719.php

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Rasmus:

Huh?
CNN has a 58-39 lead for Clinton in MA with 25% of prencincts reporting.
I think they CAN call MA for her then, even if Boston isn�t reporting yet, or am I wrong?

And they could call Obama wins AL...

Uh, 3:19 AM here in Germany, I�m getting tired^^

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Mike:

If you're an Obama fan, one way to spin the early results is that Clinton has won only Arkansas, New York, and bordering states.

She needs to win an Arizona, New Mexico, Minnesota type of race to counter this.

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Mark Lindeman:

Josh, sorry, I was sort of marinating in other numbers. --NBC seems quicker on the calls than CNN tonight, those being the two networks that I have some read on. That said, the networks see all sorts of things that we don't see. We are not trying to model the vote counts in real time. It would be a hoot, but there is no way we could keep up with them.

I'm surprised that the NJ tabulation hasn't been updated yet (as of a few minutes ago). Incidentally, the NJ general election exit poll was way off in 2004.

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Rasmus:

Now it looks good for Clinton with her victories in MA, NJ and almost certainly MO, but in an hour or so this will change when CNN projects Obamas wins in

Connecticut
Idaho
Kansas
Minnesota
North Dakota

...
I think this will give momentum back to Obama again...

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Andrew:

I believe that Obama is winning the bull**** states, while Hillary is winning the ones with the highest population, such as Mass, NY, NJ, Tennessee, etc.

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Anon:

Tennessee a big population state? 5.6 million people live there. Among the many states in the union with more people than TN are Illinois with 12.8 million and Georgia with 8.2 million.

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Daniel T:

But "winning" states in the primary means nothing since no democratic states are winner take all. The real key is the delegate count and while Clinton is still leading there, the night is still young.

By the way, if Huckabee wins the states that is is head of right now, McCain has a huge problem on his hands. He cannot win the election without winning the south and he cannot go after Huckabee supporters without losing the support of many of the independents. OK was a tough win for him but if he loses TN and GA he can pretty much kiss the general goodbye. You read it here first.

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Anon:

mark, could you add NM to the list? I'm getting Obama 50-44 over Clinton with my extrapolation, but i'd much rather see yours. :) thank you

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Daniel T:

I saw the exit polls for NM but was waiting for you guys to speak. I am not surprised that reporting is slow. That's my state and lines were LONG. The party was in no way prepared for the turnout we had. Sad, but frankly typical.

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Rick:

Seems to me that, all in all, today was a great day for Obama. He did a lot better than the polls predicted in many states. On CNN they made a big deal out of the fact that Clinton carried Massachussetts, but that was hardly a surprise given the poll numbers. When the night is over, the delegate counts are going to be neck and neck. Basically, I felt like Clinton was ahead before today, and now Obama has tied it up. What's your take?

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pragmatic progressive:

51-45 in favor of Clinton in CA? That seems a little further apart than many of the earlier states.

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Daniel T:

Can anyone explain what on earth MSNBC is doing with delegate counts. It's totally confusing. If you look at their "Political Dashboard" they show the republican delgate count for GA at 75. But when you follow the link to the state you get a total of 33.

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/21229201

Worse, it looks like the politcal dashboard total for each candidate represents the total from the individual state pages, not the delegate count listed on the dashboard itself.

It's a terrible mess. Can anyone enlighten me as to what is correct?

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Daniel T:

http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/22997326/

Sorry, this is the link to the MSNBC dashboard.

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Barry:

Looks like it is all over based on those CA exit polls - smokin' win for Hillary

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SN:

The CA Dem exit poll shows 29% of the electorate was Latino and 6% African-American. Does this strike anyone else as highly unlikely? Since it appears that Clinton's entire margin comes from Latino voters (Obama appears to have won whites and African-Americans) this would seem to be important.

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pragmatic progressive:

A quick clarification:

He is right, of course, which is why I will pass on something that Chuck Todd just reported on MSNBC. Their estimates are that when all votes are counted, the delegates at stake tonight will split 595 for Obama and 546 for Clintons, so "we're looking at an even split" in the total delegate count tomorrow.

I think Chuck Todd's numbers are just for the early states -- the ones they have enough info on to project delegate totals. Those do not include CA and some of the other late states.

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Mark Lindeman:

Sorry to get to New Mexico so late....

SN, the percentage for African-Americans is similar to 2004, but the Latino figure in 2004 was 16%. The present estimate could be pretty volatile, but we don't have enough info to tell.

Rick, naw, Obama doesn't have it tied up. It'll depend on how close CA turns out to be. He goes forward still behind -- albeit with the calendar arguably in his favor.

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Anonymous:

The CA Dem exit poll shows 29% of the electorate was Latino and 6% African-American. Does this strike anyone else as highly unlikely?

According to the 2004 general election exit polls for CA, the voters were 65% White, 6% African-American, and 21% Latino.

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Anon:

I was pretty surprised at the 29% Latino voter number too. A couple days ago, I went through old exit polls for Democratic primaries (2006, 2004, 2000) and usually the number was pretty stable in the high teens. Assuming the number is correct, it's a huge boost for Clinton and should win her the state.

Other unexpected number in the CA exits was that the Bay Area went so heavily for Clinton. I believe it was the Field Poll that framed the race as Obama's Bay Area vs. Clinton's L.A.

And thank you Mark L for all your work tonight.

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Korn:

Dear Friends,

Somebody is gonna be wrong!!! well we already know who. THAT are ZOGBY POLL and Rasmussen report poll. They got it all wrong in CA big time. They should considering themselves. one of them obviously work for Sen.Obama campaign.


Please be careful and fair next time

People

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Anon:

here are some numbers I found of how past CA statewide Dem races broke down:


2006 Dem gubernatorial primary - 12% Latino, 8% black (LAT)
2004 Dem presidential primary - 16% Latino, 8% black (via CNN)
2000 Dem presidential primary - 17% Latino, 11% black (via CNN)
1998 Dem gubernatorial primary - 12% Latino, 14% black (LAT)

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Anon:

one other question about the CA exit poll: Obama wins by a wide margin the Independents 63-31. But I wonder how many of those respondents had their ballots thrown out because of this quirk in the CA election law:

http://www.couragecampaign.org/page/community/post/lucasoconnor/BrG

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Adam:

@Mark L -- Any chance you could alphabetize the results? That'd be much easier for viewing purposes...

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Anonymous:

As far as the results in California, one thing to keep in mind, should Zogby and Rasmussen be deemed "wrong," is that many have already voted, before Obama's surge. It will be interesting to examine how the early votes affected the CA race.

At any rate, I think Obama will win more delegates at the end of the night even if Clinton wins CA.

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seanf:

I cannot see your tables when using the Firefox web browser, but I can see them using the Microsoft web browser. I regard this state of affairs as very unprofessional on your part.

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Mark Lindeman:

Adam, sure. I was keeping them chronological for a while, but that just got silly. Hang on.

All sorts of interesting exit poll quirks to obsess over for a while....

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Josh:

seanf:
I've been following the *excellent* coverage by Mark and the rest of Pollster.com all night from my Firefox browser.
Perhaps you should check your own setup.

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Rick:

Looking at CNN's results, it looks like they're projecting 357 delegates for Clinton, 287 for Obama. If you look at the state victory count, which of course is irrelevant except maybe for perception purposes, it looks like 13 for Obama and 12 for Clinton. So, I'm just wondering: what exactly are people interpreting as the "smokin' win for Hillary" ?

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MyPOV:

All the comments about California ignore the large Asian population that votes heavily for Clinton.

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Anon:

MyPOV - good point... and the exit poll show 8% of voters were Asian, going almost as strong for Clinton as blacks went for Obama

Rick - re: delegates count, Chuck Todd just gave his estimate for the Dem count on the night: Obama 841, Clinton 837. Again that's just the number of delegates won tonight, not a running total. He assumed that NM splits 14-12 to Clinton and took the Clinton campaign's high number of how they think CA will go, a net 34 delegate gain.

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Adam:

Clinton winning California is overplayed. Provided the margin is within 15 points, Obama will likely win more delegates tonight given his outrageous victories in MN, CO, etc.

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Rick:

Update: now, according to CNN, Obama has won 14 states (Alabama, Alaska, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Idaho, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Carolina, Utah)
while Clinton has won 12 (Arizona, Arkansas, California, Florida, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oklahoma, Tennessee). And their "delegate scorecard" is 371 for Clinton, 306 for Obama.

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Rick:

Thanks to Chuck Todd for those estimates. Obama 841, Clinton 837. Wow. Clearly tomorrow's headline should be "Smokin' win for Hillary!" But Barry is not alone in his interpretation. Right now, cnn.com, reuters.com, and msnbc.com all have pictures of Hillary smiling on their front pages. And those are the only 3 I've checked. (Strangely, msnbc.com has the delegate count at 236 for Clinton, 128 for Obama....)

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Alan:

Adam is dead on. The real movement in delegates comes with large margins of victory, particularly in the mid to large sized states.

The networks tend to talk about the race as if it were winner-take-all everywhere (i.e. who won which states). At least on the Democratic side, this makes very little sense.

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Daniel T:

I made this comment earlier but I'll repeat it. MSNBC delegates counts are messed up and frankly it's embarrasing for them.

On a larger note, someone needs to kick the networks in the ass. While I realize that projecting state "winners" is perhaps the only way their average viewer can understand the results, it is higly misleading and serves to confuse rather than inform. And informing should be the goal, at least in an ideal world.

Finally, I have been laughing all night long at CNN which has constantly buried Huckabee's significant victories and highlighted McCain and Clinton. This is outrageous bias. Yahoo at least had the deceny to post Huckabee's GA win on it's front page, so you know that he exists and is in the race. As far as CNN is concerned, this a McCain vs Romney race. That's their story and their sticking to it, regardless of the facts!

Overall, I found the media coverage of this race tonight biased and misleading, when not simply outright wrong. And I have no ax to grind in this race as I am/was and Edwards supporter.

BTW, thanks to all the people at Pollster.com for their work tonight.

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Mark Lindeman:

Wow, what a night. It actually felt even more like a 'national primary' than I imagined.

I guess after more thought (and after staring at those caucus results) I pretty much agree with Rick after all. Today's results will probably play as pretty much a tie, and Clinton won't feel like a frontrunner.

That Missouri (D) projection (the reweight around 8:30 Eastern) sure held up pretty well. Elsewhere there were some issues.

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Adam:

Hey all: NY Times has a really good site for tracking individual counties and what not:

http://politics.nytimes.com/election-guide/2008/results/demmap/

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Rick:

Obama won Missouri now too, so now it's 15 states (total) for Obama, 12 for Clinton. I guess Obama's victory in Missouri by a completely irrelevant 0.5% made a difference to someone, because now the smiley Clinton face is gone from the front page of cnn.com (they now just have a picture of McCain), and msnbc.com has changed theirs to a picture of a victorious Obama! Smiling Hillary is still up there at Reuters.com and yahoo.com though.
p.s. I totally agree with Daniel that the Republican results seem skewed against Huckabee. I'm not sure that this is really bias though -- my hunch is that the tv and online news is in such a rush that they almost have to pre-plan their main stories, and the Huckabee wins were so surprising that they just weren't ready for it. They were ready for a big McCain victory, and it kinda happened so they just went with that.

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Adam:

Nothing against Republicans, but does anyone else find it incredibly annoying that MSNBC's dashboard places the Democratic results on the bottom? I give them points for letting you select "most recently updated", and for separating the Dems and the Republicans, but is the result of the Rep race at all in doubt? Jeesh. Thought they would have thought this one through...

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Gary Kilbride:

John Zogby is once again my absolute hero. No one can set up opportunities for grand theft at the trading sites like he can, via obviously flawed polls.

Hillary was trading at 50/50 today to win California. Come on, regardless if you ever wagered a nickel in your life you've got to know that's a surreal investment. Maybe once a year, on average, the biggest problem is not to laugh while scooping up the contracts. I couldn't get enough. Early voting, women, Hispanics, and how beloved the Clintons have been in California, and somehow that's a 50/50 state? On what planet? I told my dad the state would be so lopsided it would be called within an hour. Well, that turned out to be slightly optimistic, but certainly more accurate than Zogby's polls.

He's done this before, creating absurd lines on the Clinton/Lazio race and Gore to win California in 2000 based on bizarre late polling, but I thought the trading sites had wised up and wouldn't overreact. Thank goodness they did. I lost big on the NFL playoffs and Giuliani but this overcame that net, and then some. I'm still shaking at how simple it was.

Sorry for the detour. I'm sure there was exquisite analysis on this site and within the comments but I've got to default to the betting aspect when an opportunity presents itself. And gad was that an opportunity. Obama may have done better than I expected overall but right now Hillary is still trading about 57.5% to win the nomination.

Between the Giants preserving the Dolphins' '72 season as uniquely perfect, and now this absolute gift of a wager, damn it's been a marvelous few days.

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Adam:

Gary -- Actually at intrade Obama is up 55-45. There's probably a lot of volatility as traders try to discern the results. 55-45 Obama is about right, I'd say.

I thought about buying in when he was in the 30s. I would have made tons of $. But I couldn't put money on my candidate; seems like that's just asking for trouble....

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calwatch:

DId you take down the original projections? It would be interesting to see the close time projections compared with the actual vote.

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RS:

Damn... if only I had returned to pollster, I would have had some more fun with this live-blog in action. Oh well.

On the other hand, it was an action-packed night, and IMHO things went very well for Senator Obama. My estimate for the elected delegate count post-Super Tuesday is Obama 909, Clinton 883 (including American Samoa, and a tie in NM) - dividing both state-level and district-level delegates proportionally to the state-wide vote. With each percentage point Obama gains in California, that gap will increase. Though as pointed out by someone else, if Obama's votes are restricted to certain districts, that could be a problem.

As for Zogby's "bad" performance - guess they underestimated the Hispanic vote, and probably missed the early vote. Ugly Betty beats the beautiful ladies once again... :-)

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Rick:

I noticed that the estimates in California for Obama and Clinton only add up to 93%. Does that mean Edwards got 7%? I wonder how that factors in....

(By the way, did anyone watch the election coverage on BBC? Some of their expressions are pretty funny. For instance they described McCain as the candidate that's "more middle-of-the-ground".)

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Mark Lindeman:

calwatch, we made a snap decision to update projections (to some extent) as the night wore on -- but I also archived the original tabulations. I tweaked the original estimator a bit and I have some estimates of exit poll discrepancies -- with the huge caveat that the initial projections aren't at all the pure "what the surveys said" that many people want them to be. Most likely they incorporate not only pre-election expectations, but turnout assumptions that can be rapidly updated.

Qualitatively, I see relatively large underestimates of Clinton's performance in Massachusetts, Arizona, New Jersey, and perhaps Arkansas. I see underestimates of McCain's performance in Massachusetts, New York, perhaps California, and perhaps New Jersey. As you might guess from the lists, the discrepancies are correlated. I haven't even tried to calculate standard errors yet, so these are very crude indications of magnitude and possible statistical robustness. Exit polls have struggled in most (maybe all) of these places before. I will be writing this up after I've gotten more sleep.

Rick, as of my last update last night, the two CA estimates add up to 95.3. Edwards has most of the rest, and some is scattered across other candidates who remained on the ballot -- I don't have reliable figures to be more specific. However, in many states the major-candidate exit poll shares are below the vote shares. (A code bug contributed to that early in the evening, but didn't cause it.) It looks like Edwards, Paul, and "uncommitted" (which is an actual ballot choice in some states) did slightly better in the exit poll than in the vote. My hunch is that some respondents reported their affect about the race rather than whom they actually voted for.

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Qasim:

It appears to me from the CNN delegate count site that even though Obama won 13 states to Clintons' 8, as like Nevada (where popular vote was won by Clinton but delegate count won by Obama, in super Tueday states Clinton might have won more delegates in 11 states (Like New Mexico, Alabama) - Can someone confirm that.

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Rick:

I'm curious about the estimates for superdelegates. CNN seems to be allocating at least 2/3 of them to Clinton. I wonder, though, if that might be based on estimates from October and November, when Clinton had a big lead in the national polls. These days, things seem more like 50-50 nationally, and I'd bet the superdelegates are pretty evenly split as well. Any thoughts on this?

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RS:

Qasim:
There could be Nevada-type situations where the votes are very close, but to figure that out you'd have to go into the county-wise vote splits... Be my guest! I did some estimates dividing both district- and state-level estimates proportional to the state-wide vote (see my blog). For five states where all delegates were apportioned by CNN, my estimates were off the CNN-projected delegate counts by 1. But the net effect was just 1 more delegate to Clinton... It likely evens out in the end.

Rick: Superdelegates are not divided by vote share. These are Senators, Congresspeople, Governors and other Democratic party officials who express their preference for one candidate or the other. Thus far, about 200 such folks have shown a preference for Senator Clinton, compared to ~100 for Senator Obama. We will see in the days ahead if these "party elite" switch their loyalties, and what the remaining 500 do.

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Adam:

My thought is that if either one of them come out with a significant lead in pledged delegates (read as more than 50 or so), there's no way the party elite will hand the election to the other candidate. The reasoning I have is that it would create outrage among the democratic faithful, who feel essentially politicians have stolen the election from their own constituents. In short, don't take the superdelegate number too seriously if it's pro Clinton or pro Obama. The pledged delegates will dictate IMO...

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Rick :

I agree with Adam, and would also add that these super-delegates are humans too and can change their mind on a wimb just like we do. RS: do you know *WHEN* the super-delegates' preferences were last looked at? If it was in November that means nothing, and in that case it seems wrong for CNN to include those numbers.

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Concerned Citizen:

EXCUSE ME, HATE TO BREAK UP YOUR FIGURES AND CALCULATIONS: But why did ALL of you FORGET about ALL the candidates?
No wonder why candidates drop out, they are not all being treated the same way. Mike GRAVEL has some great ideas about how we should run our country, and no body cares. He has not gotten any time to talk. No polls list him, no debates called on him, he doesn't exist. He isn't even on all the ballots for the dem primary. That's another thing: Why do we have to only have 1 dem, 1 republican, 1 green party? 130 some odd schmucks all vied to be the governor of california. They all had the chance to be listed in the offical pamphlet to the voters. Yet we have to narrow down the playing field for President? That's crap!!!!

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