How Will Clinton And Sanders Do On Tuesday? (Updated)

Most polls and FiveThirtyEight predict a Clinton blow-out on Tuesday, with her winning all five states, in some cases by a large margin. My model, however, predicts that each candidate will win a subset of these states, but with Clinton still win the day.

I’ve been working on a model to predict primary outcomes for the Democratic selection process, and generally, the model has proved very effective. After each set of primaries I’ve adjusted the model to try to do a better job of predicting the upcoming contests. The most important adjustment is the one that affects the current model.

The model assumes that we can predict voting behavior by ethnicity. Given this assumption, the distribution of potential Democratic participants by ethnic group then gives the final likely division among primary voters or caucus goers across the two candidates, then this translates directly into the division of committed delegates for that state. The estimates of within-group voting are made from exit polls.

The most recent revision divides states into “Southern” (meaning deep south) and “Not Southern,” and uses different sets of numbers for each of the two kinds of states.

To date, about 32% of the committed delegates have been assigned, with 769 for Clinton and 502 for Sanders. Next Tuesday, March 15th, an additional 691 delegates will be committed to the two candidates. So, almost exactly 50% of all the delegates for the entire process will be committed. (None of this counts uncommitted delegates, sometimes called “Super Delegates.”)

If Clinton and Sanders each do about as well as they have done in the past, this will leave Sanders with a significant gap to close, and he probably can’t win the nomination. If Clinton does better, that closes the door to Sanders even more firmly. But, if Sanders does well, that may help close the gap and considering Sanders as a possible nominee is reasonable.

The current model, which has the interesting dual property of giving Sanders more delegates than the polls currently predict, but also, according to my own evaluation of my own model, probably underestimates Sanders’ performance, suggests that Clinton will earn more delegates than Sanders, but not by too much. So, if the underperformance of the model is strong enough, they could come close to a tie. At present, here are my predictions for the outcome of Tuesday’s set of primaries:

Florida: Clinton will win but by less than expected. The outcome will be so close that I can’t rule out a Sanders win here.

Illinois: Sanders will win, but this may be close to a tie.

Missouri: Sanders may win by a small margin. However, keep in mind that it is very difficult to classify Missouri as a “Southern” vs. “not-Southern” state. I picked “Not-Southern” for this prediction. But we’ll see. If Missouri goes all “Southern” then Clinton wins there.

North Carolina: Clinton will win by a very large margin (70-something to 30-something delegates).

Ohio: Sanders will win by a small margin.

__________
UPDATED

Here is the output of the model indicating the expected number of committed delegates to be awarded on Tuesday to the two Democratic candidates:
Screen Shot 2016-03-14 at 2.34.04 PM

If these numbers are close to what happens, or if Sanders does better, then Sanders is still in the race, though with a tough road ahead of him. If, in contrast, the polls turn out to be right, it would indicate that Sanders' over performance in earlier contests may have been temporary, and the chance of him winning the primary is very small. At present the polls show Clinton way ahead in Florida, Clinton barely ahead in Illinois, a near tie in Missouri, Clinton way ahead in North Carolina, and Clinton a little ahead in Ohio. In other words, I'm suggesting that Sanders will win three out of the five races, while the polls suggest he will one or may be two.
__________

Let’s look at the FiveThirtyEight predictions to see how they compare.

FiveThirtyEight gives Florida to clinton (nearly 100% chance of wining). They predict a strong Clinton finish in the state, about 2:1.

For Illinois, FiveThirtyEight says about the same, a better than 2:1 projected result, with Clinton carrying away a lot of the delegates.

For Missouri, FiveThirtyEight has Clinton probably winning, but not by too much, so only a small pickup for her.

For North Carolina, FiveThirtyEight has Clinton winning just shy of 2:1 over sanders.

For Ohio, FiveThirtyEight predicts a Clinton win, and a fairly strong one.

So we can see that there is a huge difference between FiveThirtyEight’s prediction and mine, and the two methods are very different. Both of the methods used by FiveThirtyEight rely on some combination of opinion or support-related information, while my method uses none of that. For this reason it is not surprising that the two methods produce very different results.

The point of going over the FiveThirtyEight predictions is that they do a very good job of representing the polling data, which overall strongly suggest that Clinton will run away with the nomination. The problem is, these data have been suggesting this since Iowa, and generally speaking, Sanders has far outperformed those estimates.

The final outcome in terms of delegates from all five races will be approximately:

Clinton: ca 364 delegates

Sanders: ca 326 delegates

This will mean that, at the end of the day Tuesday, Hillary Clinton will have about 56% of the committed delegates, to Sanders' 44%, with about 50% of the committed delegates assigned.

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If your prediction model is correct, then the day will be regarded as a huge one for Sanders - even though he will fall slightly further behind. It will raise more doubts about Clinton, though she will move another step closer to the nomination.

Clinton's AIDS remarks may become a factor, though many of the standard liberal websites have refrained from making it a headline story. I really don't know what went on there. She was just out in left field on the Reagans and AIDS.

By Kevin ONeill (not verified) on 12 Mar 2016 #permalink

They are currently about 20% apart. Moving to 10% apart would have that effects.

Greg Laden, Both your own & public polling are counting the wrong voter data, by mistaking present 'Candidate-Primaries' among mostly committed party members with the later 'Presidential-public-election'. These polls are right about existing public perception albeit fleeting, but wrong about committed party member voting choices. As we can see, this statistical error is consistently between 10 - 30 %. Clinton's 30 point lead across the past 10 states was wrong.

The huge difference for Bernie Sanders between what party-caucus election polls are predicting & what he actually receives, each time ahead by 10 - 30% can be understood because those 'party-members' voting aka 'radicals' are much better informed & motivated to participate than the public at large. Public election polling companies are polling among general party members or among the public at large doesn't reflect informed committed party members / activists who come out to party caucuses to elect their delegates or representatives. Committed activists in turn inform general public so results are exponential. Bernie’ll continue to enjoy this 10 - 30% advantage over what public polling companies are reporting in the media.

Significantly Bernie has also won 69% of Democrats Abroad compared with 31% for Hillary which apportions 21 delegates reported on 8 March. Between Michigan 63, Mississippi 1 & Democrats Abroad 16, Bernie has picked up a couple more delegates in today's total, than Hillary. Democrats-Abroad is particularly significant because they tend to reflect the way the rest of the world's 7 billion people view American politics as well as experience its physical consequences. Republicans are motivating 100s of 1000s more voters to caucus in each major state, so far, red & blue. The challenge remains to motivate as many Democratic prone voters to get out to vote. Democrats must become aware of the primary 'jobs' motivation & entrepreneur spirit, which drives & misleads Republican voters & how to achieve cultural Economic Democracy as a healthy response from the tree-roots of our society. https://sites.google.com/site/indigenecommunity/relational-economy/8-ec…

By Douglas F. Jack (not verified) on 12 Mar 2016 #permalink

Doug, what you are saying about public polling is mostly correct, I think. But you've made an error in suggesting that somehow I've got this wrong. I am explicitly NOT using any of those data, zero, zilch. That is why I've successfully predicted nearly every primary outcome while the estimates based on polling have been very frequently wrong!

I also would not equate motivated and informed. A lot of people are highly motivated but not especially informed, in both party's primaries. But, what you say specifically about the highly involved activists is true. I just don't think I would count a person who is 28 years old, never voted before, who is suddenly very involved this year as an activist (yet). And, it will be interesting to see if those folks stick around after this year's election. This is the second surge like this I've witnessed in Minnesota. The last time, they did not stick around.

I had not looked at the Democrats Abroad data, that is very interesting.

Greg, I'm not seeing your explicit calculation for how you arrive at your numbers. To tie these numbers down to relevant people as statistics, polling companies would somehow have to tap into 'active' party member data. However learning from Polling system errors, we know present stats are off by 10 - 30%.
I agree that 'informed' is relative to information being offered, but generally those who become more involved, particularly in the social process of attending political meetings & communicating these 'findings' with those around them, tend to have a motivating & determining influence on all ages.

Young people who have more on-the-line in terms of viable employment policies & war as the USA's main economy, intuit & speak with a passion missing from their programmed & trained elders regardless of experience's relevance.

Polster data, to be significant, must Identify the huge difference between Primary & General Election voting. Party activists who choose at this Primary stage, then through personal & collective networking, animate family, groups, co-workers, schools, institutions & others. Oligarch owned Media still has preponderance of control over public perception in the general election. Through impeccable social-media communications at this Primary stage, Bernie's network is tapping directly into the minds of & animating party activists.

I know you have pretty much given up on your simple demographic model, but my version of just about the simplest white/black/Hispanic ethnic model I could construct gives:

State, Clinton/Sanders vote share, Clinton/Sanders delegates
Florida, 61.9/38.1, 132.5/81.5
Illinois, 58.0/42.0, 90.5/65.5
Missouri, 48.8/51.2, 34.7/36.3
North Carolina, 65.2/34.8, 69.7/37.3
Ohio, 49.5/50.5, 70.8/72.2

Or, recognizing the rather large error of the model, we have Florida and North Carolina wins for Clinton, Illinois a probable Clinton win, and Missouri and Ohio too close to call.

This model gives Clinton winning a total of 398.2 delegates for the day, and Sanders 292.8, or Clinton increasing her delegate lead by about 100.

Thanks Rick R. Your demographic calculations are revealing & helpful in determining the General Election & to some degree Primary results, but I would go further. There are certain social media 'influencers' such as Cornel West, Noam Chomsky or Michael Moore, who are 'progressively' having an influence on black, hispanic, white & other voters through their academic, media & activist networks. Social media is working quickly to overcome establishment-Democrat, Clinton & Republican-establishment misinformation campaigns, so we are entering into a different demographic.

If southern red states were scheduled one month later into the primaries after the northern blue states then family, friend & other networks would have truthed-out Clinton's misinformation. Considering the higher population density states are now scheduled, such as Ohio, New-York, California etc, we will see a significant difference in 'racial' & other voter demographics towards Bernie. Bernie is as well getting clearer on his anti-war stance so activists are hearing what they need to support him.

By Douglas F. Jack (not verified) on 12 Mar 2016 #permalink

In reply to by RickR (not verified)

Douglas F Jack,

If, as you say, the polls accurately represent the population for general election results, then my prediction for the general election is correct-- Hillary will win, Bernie will lose.

This would seem to be an unfortunate outcome for those interested in furthering Bernie's goals.

Rick I've not given up on the simple demographic model. It has been working just fine. All I did was to add one simple binary variable that divides it into two sets of numbers by states. Previously I had two parallel models, each with a different set of distributions, now they are one.

Anyway, yours is very much closer to the clinton-favored numbers I would have been using had there been no adjustments from the last few cycles, and it may well be right. We shall see!

Douglas, we shall see.

My numbers are simple. I have three ratios each for "white, black, hispanic" of likely voting pattern based on exit polls where available for all of the states that ran last week or so, averaged out, with the states divided into two categories (as stated). I have democratic party membership data for those three categories. Then, simple arithmetic to estimate percentage of delegates. So far this exact method has predicted every single primary but ~two (Iowa and Minnesota, with NH and VT kept out of the prediction for obvious reasons) wrt to winner, and has done a very good job of predicting the exact number of delegates. These predictions have been closer than the poll based predictions and straight polls. So I'm not quite groking your reasons it does not work.

As far as the voters are concerned, the messiness seems to come from open caucuses and primaries, and as I've noted every time I've done this, Sanders performs better than the model predicts in non-Southern states almost every time, in ways that I can't seem to fairly fit into the model (I can get it to work by arbitrarily changing voting preferences but that is not a very good method). So yes, there is interesting action going on there.

As far as the young pepole's passion goes, I'm well aware of that and basically agree with much of what you are saying. My own daughter, a young person, is also an emerging professional campaigner, is currently coordinating a local campaign and until that point was working for the Sanders campaign in Iowa. She's where I get my reports from the field for student area caucuses, because that's where she worked.

I'm not sure if there is a full connect, though, between the rational activist and the new voters who show up at these events, based on my own experience up here near Michele Bachmann territory. The new voters who showed up to vote for Sanders where the same people who shook their heads, asked essentially ignorant questions (or at least, noob questions) about key liberal Democratic proposals (our district is right wing but the DFLers here are lefties) and even voted no on basic pro-diversity proposals for the platform. These are people who normally don't vote but when they do, they vote for Jesse Ventura or a Republican, and for some reason showed up to vote for Sanders. This leads me to believe that the added support that is showing up and giving Sanders this extra push can't be characterized very easily as one set of things going on. It is way more complicated than that!

Regarding the influence of new voices on social media in southern non-white demogrpahics: Yes, that is key, it may be real, it may or may not be the case that it will play out and matter. So far it has not mattered at all --- undetectable as far as actual primary voting goes.

As I've said a few times, my model is the null hypothesis that assumes status quo, so I'm predicting future primaries based on past primaries. My model will continue to predict results if that effects is NOT happening, it will underestimate Sanders AND overestimate Clinton in those states if it IS happing. That's actually one of the main goals of even doing this, to detect and measure the effect of whatever phenomena are happening with Bernie.

Greg's anecdote turns out to be an excellent, Ockham-friendly explanation for much of what we are seeing.

There are no "independents", or very few, voters who don't fall into the "regularly vote R or D" category.

In the general election, this kind of voter, if they vote, will vote for Trump over Bernie every time. The basic pattern of the electorate isn't going to change, and there isn't going to be a "revolution" on either side.

That's because the majority of the electorate is moderate and not receptive to extreme change; those at the margins may determine an outcome by tipping the balance between two mainstream candidates (turnout), but the mainstream candidate will always win.

If it looks like Bernie will be the D nominee, the Republicans can just anoint Kasich or someone like him. Even if Trump runs as an independent, Kasich would still win.

Now, if someone wishes to attempt to refute my claim based on the last many elections, and policy issues, that's fine, but my tolerance for people slipping in Hillary-bashing Republican talking points is exhausted. Sorry, Greg, if you think it is too polemical, but I'm not going to let it pass.

Zebra - I (and polls) disagree with you that there are "no or very few" independents who are not fully committed to a single party. But what on earth is the basis for your assumption that any such people who exist would vote for Trump over Sanders "every time" - and this because the electorate is "moderate"? Moderate people do not usually vote for Nazis! If they do, it is because they are desperate. Sanders speaks to the desperation of the working class. Clinton has been forced to give it some lip service, but has been up to her neck in the winner-take-all system for decades. Which of them is better positioned to compete for those of Trump's supporters who are motivated by economic issues rather than simple bigotry?

Jane 12,

1. Go back and read my comment to you on the previous thread.
2. Read Greg's third-from last paragraph of #10, to which I am referring in 11.
3. I repeat-- I am happy to discuss the general election based on past results or policy issues with anyone who doesn't consistently try to slip in the Republican anti-Hillary talking points we have been hearing for decades.

There is no "revolution" in the works.

Zebra, RE: "If, as you say, the polls accurately represent the population".
MINDS CHANGE The polls (accurately) represent the population only on the day they are taken & definitely not 10 months later at the convention stage. Given an active public political dialogue, especially on social-media with social-media influencers such as Tulsi Gabbard (Hawaii), Cornell West, Noam Chomsky, Michael Moore etc., reaching millions of people daily & responding to specific points of information & misinformation. My point is that; party activists are in the 'Primary' stage of choosing delegates who in turn choose Presidential & other Congress candidates.
DISTINGUISHING EACH STAGE
Over the next 10 months, these delegates will, from their formation at this point, be key determinants for influencing the public at large. Public opinion polls asking the non-involved general public, 'who-they-prefer-? for presidential candidate at this stage are almost irrelevant to candidate delegate selection, which are made in each state primary. Activist delegates are aware of Mainstream Media public misinformation & victimization. In creating 'Voting-prediction-logarithms' as Greg's blog or media-polling purports, its entirely important to identify the relevant qualities behind each number & formula made as well as make adjustments.

By Douglas F. Jack (not verified) on 13 Mar 2016 #permalink

Zebra, RE: "There is no “revolution” in the works." Bernie Sanders captured the 'revolution' by finally expressing 2 words "REGIME-CHANGE" during the Miami debate. If you are not concerned with the illegality of US, Hillary-orchestrated 'Regime-Change' throughout the Middle-east (Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, Iran, Turkey) & northern Africa (Egypt, Libya) as part of Israel's Oded-Yinon-Plan & its US daughters 'Project-for-a-New-American-Century' PNAC & 'New-World-Order', then you are completely out-of-touch with the public dialogue & lacking in human remorse. REGIME CHANGE is against all national & international law as well as human decency. US financed & mercenary orchestration of Regime Change / destabilization has caused 10s of millions of unnecessary deaths over the past 20 years, Australian source Dr. Gideon Polya, estimates deaths at 5.6 million US Afghanistan Invasion 10th Anniversary. Polya make other statistical analysis on Iraqi, Libyan & other falsely called Arab Spring deliberate destabilizations. http://www.countercurrents.org/polya101011.htm

By Douglas F. Jack (not verified) on 13 Mar 2016 #permalink

Douglas F Jack,

Got it. I'm really reassured.

Kasich says "vote for me, I am a calm, personable compassionate conservative with large executive experience and a strong foreign policy background. I will keep you safe from terrorists, and build consensus in DC. Also, I have this nice young man with a nice family and a Hispanic-sounding name as my VP."

Bernie: "Vote for me because.....Noam Chomsky! And I promise to take away your existing health insurance, raise your taxes, crash your 401K, ignore foreign threats, and be this handwaving uncompromising cranky old man in dealing with everyone in DC. It's a revolution!"

What could go wrong?

zebra you REALLY drank that Clinton Kool-Aid, huh?

Good lord, you've even brought out the "Bernie's going to take away your healthcare" line. I hope you're aware that no one can possibly take you seriously after that because it's the most egregiously disingenuous attack of a campaign that's made egregiously disingenuous attacks its standard move.

Zebra - I REread the antepenultimate paragraph in Greg's comment 10, and in it he is reporting direct observation of voter behavior that contradicts your abstract concept of how voters will behave. Not sure how this supports your case.

Your comment 16 does present a reasonable argument about how GOP election commercials might sound, if Sanders were the Democratic nominee and if Kasich - who is also a warmonger, but a soft-spoken and not totally insane one - had a snowball's chance in hell of being the Republican nominee. Unfortunately, he doesn't. Right now, the most likely GOP argument is like this:

Trump says: "I know you rural and blue-collar white folks are being crushed, and I'll take on the causes, which include bad trade deals, rich people being taxed too much, and the fact that there are Mooslims somewhere in the world who still own anything of value."

I'd a lot rather see the alternative offered to that be

Sanders: "Rural and blue-collar folks are being crushed, and I'll take on the causes, which include bad trade deals, rich folks being taxed too little, and the fact that young people are expected to take on a mountain of debt to get the training that might, no guarantee, let them get an entry-level job."

than

Clinton: "We've reversed the Bush recession and the economy is doing fine now, as you can see from the increase in your 401K! [You DO have a 401K, don't you?] I'll help Wall Street keep growing the economy just like it has been, while pursuing my efforts to subjugate the entire Middle East even if it means we get in a shooting war with Russia."

jane 18:

...if Sanders were the Democratic nominee and if Kasich – who is also a warmonger, but a soft-spoken and not totally insane one – had a snowball’s chance in hell of being the Republican nominee. Unfortunately, he doesn’t.

Unfortunately...Whoa!. You really are a Republican troll.

Good catch, zebra (pats self on back)

Zebra is just slipping in Sanders-bashing Republican talking points. For which our tolerance is being exhausted.

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 14 Mar 2016 #permalink

zebra (pats self on back)

THERE's your problem...

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 14 Mar 2016 #permalink

Aushin 17,

But he is. He said so.

Unlike the case with Obamacare, where the Republicans falsely claim that's what happened, he has actually proposed eliminating employer-based healthcare, which covers most working people with insurance. (Obamacare affected a very few people who had pretty-much worthless policies.)

What koolaid have you been drinking?

Zebra, you've gone from deniable ad homs to just being an out-and-out liar, and also a fool to make claims for which everyone can see you cannot have evidence. I am not a Republican. However, since there is a significant risk that the Republican candidate for president will attain the office, I certainly do wish that their nominee could be a civil, apparently sane average American conservative, rather than a torture-hungry fascist or an outright Dominionist. Whether you are Republican or Democrat - or even a paid Hillary staffer, see how this works? - you are going to have to live under whoever gets elected.

UNFORTUNATELY ... it looks like the GOP will almost certainly nominate someone who would turn this country into a hellhole and/or start World War III. Thus it is crucial that the Dems nominate someone who can beat that candidate. Aside from my dislike of Clinton's foreign policy, I'm not at all convinced that she can do it. If she is nominated I will certainly hold my nose and vote for her, as will many others, but that might not be enough to counter the active, enthusiastic support that a faux-populist candidate on the other side will be getting from his base.

I haven't seen Bernie promise to take away everyone's health insurance, much less "ignore foreign threats", but please keep in mind that he would not get his more radical ideas through Congress. In fact, since gerrymandering is so extreme as to virtually guarantee perpetual GOP control of the House, he would be lucky to get anything substantive through Congress. But if his populist message can make him a winner against Drumpf, it would at least give us four years in which we knew the President wouldn't order ethnicoreligious minorities shoved into boxcars and sent to slave labor camps.

jane,

You are being completely illogical, putting aside the hyperbole.

Bernie has positions (like taking away people's existing health insurance) that make him extremely unlikely to be elected. Perhaps, even against Trump. I don't see any reward that is worth that risk.

You are creating some convoluted reasoning where people will vote for Bernie because they think he can't overcome the inertia and vested interests in Congress-- but the same would apply for Trump.

Hillary easily beats Trump.
Kasich easily beats Bernie.
Kasich/Rubio (or Kasich/Cruz perhaps) against Hillary with a solid VP choice is really close but should go to H because of women's rights issues.

Again, I am not willing to bet the future of the country on an unpredictable matchup between unconventional characters. And I am still not convinced that Trump will be the Republican choice. Kasich or some other such character could even mount an independent run a la Lieberman and simply take the mainstream of the party with him. Bernie still loses in that scenario.

And I am not lying; Bernie's plan does take away people's existing health insurance.

What gives with polls? Eight years ago, I read that pollsters were missing out on young voters who didn't have landlines. Haven't they adapted yet?

On Meet the Press, Alex Castellanos raised eyebrows by saying that Bernie Sanders is going to be the Democratic nominee, then said, "Whether he's wearing a man suit or whether he's wearing a pant suit. ... The campaign belongs to Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren. It's not Hillary's campaign. She's the figurehead. ... She'll end up being the nominee. But it doesn't fit her at all. How can she sell that in the general?"
It was a great lead-in to the SNL skit with Hillary morphing into Bernie.

I do think that Repubs are finally realizing the extent to which their party is dancing with the devil. I've been dubious about chatter of Sanders accepting the VP slot if he falls short, but to defeat Trump, he might just do it.

They have adapted, at lest to some extent. They found out about cell phones.

Hyperbole? Things are getting really scary in this country. A kid just got stomped for being brown by a guy who was yelling "Trump, Trump." Many of his fervent supporters actively want racial and religious persecution, but the rest of them are willing to accept it if he just offers a plausible-sounding claim that he'll keep them, personally, from sliding further into economic disaster. This is looking more like Germany 1932 all the time.

Hillary beats Trump handily in polls, though not as handily as Sanders does, but I don't have much confidence in that. Polls said she'd beat Sanders in Wisconsin, too. It is possible that polling methods are systematically underestimating the share of the vote that a populist candidate will get. Trump has a fanatical group of supporters, whereas most of the electorate views Hillary as simply the lesser evil; will enough of them work hard enough for her to overcome his advantage in money and goons? Elitism vs. pseudo-populism is not a bet I feel comfortable taking this year.

As for your other scenarios, there is no point on speculating on Kasich vs. Clinton. In a normal year you would think Kasich would do better than Trump in the general election, but that doesn't matter if he can't be nominated because he's too "establishment." If Kasich, Romney or whoever mounts an independent run, or if the GOP finds a way to take the nomination away from Trump and he runs as an independent, the former GOP vote is split and, even with Trump picking up many disaffected wage-class white votes, the Democratic nominee almost certainly wins. I can't imagine why you think "Bernie still loses in that scenario"; if Bernie could beat Trump one-on-one, why can't he beat Trump in a three-way?

(Caveat: if none of the parties in a three-way election received a majority of the electoral votes, it would be thrown to the House of Representatives, which would crown the more favored of the GOP candidates. I can imagine how the Stormtrumpers would react if Trump had the plurality and the prize was handed to the establishment guy. Sadly, if Sanders had the plurality, his supporters would not rise up.)

#27 Jane, I am also putting less trust in polls. A while back I said that both Hillary and Trump would be weak candidates. I now feel that since both parties are fractured - the GOP more obviously - any two nominees will be inherently weak. Any establishment nominee will tick off the outsider's supporters, and any outsider nominee will frighten at least some moderate voters. Trump, however, might be making Cruz look like a safe outsider pick in a brokered convention.

jane,

I get it-- the polls are wrong unless you like the result.

And the data is right unless you don't like the result.

So I will leave you with the facts; polls at this point are useless.

Bernie is running on a platform where he takes away the health insurance that people have, along with other similarly extreme and unpopular ideas for a general election platform.

Kasich would beat him, even without the support of the Trump fanatics, even if Trump were also running in the general. That's because of both the platform and qualities of the individual, which play heavily in general elections.

The majority of each party so far has rejected Trump and Bernie. The (perceived) moderate, competent, candidate historically wins the general.

Hillary would beat Trump easily for the same reason, and has the best (and very good) chance of defeating a Kasich-type opponent.

Anyway, you can carry on with whatever convoluted story you are telling yourself to justify your animus towards Hillary.

For whatever it is worth, if you go to Bing and search 'presidential primaries' is will give you their in-house predictions for today's primaries. On the democratic side, the have Clinton winning in four out of the five races, with Missouri being the Sander's win, with 57.6% of the vote. Illinois is the only state that they have Clinton winning by less than 60%.

Actually, zebra, I think I already left you with the fact that polls are now useless. So it appears that there is something on which we agree!

Some very liberal states are not voting for several weeks yet - it is regrettable how disproportionate an influence the former Confederate States of America have gained over the perception of "electability" just by voting early - so it's not over till it's over. However, if Hillary wins across the board tonight, as polls claim she will, I will agree that she is the presumptive nominee, regardless of the fact that I have, by my values, darn good reasons for disliking her. If Bernie wins two of the three non-Southern states in play today, I will continue to be confident that he has a real shot.

I can't imagine why you think Kasich vs. Sanders is a likely matchup. Kasich has almost no chance of walking away with the nomination despite being third in the votes. Nor do I see it as assured that Hillary would beat Trump (even if we presume there is zero chance that Hillary gets indicted). The "moderate" candidate historically wins the general election because the voters historically are satisfied enough with BAU that they want to keep it going, or at least not so dissatisfied that they want to risk the devil they don't know, and will settle for kicking the can down the road another four to eight years. Once you get a critical mass of people who feel like they just can't take another eight years of BAU, that is no longer a trend that can be relied upon.

jane,

I refer you to today's WaPo, the wonkblog piece titled "What Sanders Would Do..." A balanced discussion of pros and cons.

But, in the general election, it doesn't matter which economist is right about the net gains or losses. As a platform, it is a complete loser. There is no "silent majority" "fed up with BAU" enough to take those kinds of risks.

Not to be too snarky, but young folks with college debt having to live at home for a while are not the same as hard-bitten WWI veterans riding the rails begging for food, and being gunned down by company thugs for trying to organize. Very very different times.

I'm suspicious of WaPo as reliably neocon and pro-business - the actual headline of the piece is "What Sanders Would Do To America" - but did just now go read the piece. It does present both positive and negative claims about several of Sanders' ideas, though it is certainly written to favor the latter. (Example, it is suggested that the world as a whole is better off if America's "cutthroat" capitalism leads to more Innovation, a sacred concept in the religion of Progress. All well and good unless you are one of the people who gets his throat cut!)

I think that the piece overlooks some historical facts. For one thing, the peak of American prosperity came when the top marginal tax rates were far higher than they are today. Even in the Clinton era, when the working class were better off than they are now, the top tax rates were higher. It is hardly clear that allowing the already rich to earn huge amounts of fictive wealth via capital gains and pay almost nothing on it is, indeed, the best way to ensure that the nation as a whole prospers.

I disagree with Sanders that every kid should go to college; some should go to trade school, or, shock horror, be apprenticed in useful businesses. However, free public-school tuition for capable students is hardly a radical new commie idea. My own father - a brilliant scientist who later in life was a dedicated free-marketeer - was the first person in his family to go to college, and as a Caifornia resident, he went to UC Berkeley tuition-free. Telling America's children that if they hope to eat in future they'd better be able to pay through the nose for their own job training (and retraining, and re-retraining) is becoming unsustainable.\

As for single payer health care, I recognize its flaws, but also its strengths. For someone like me who prefers to avoid hyper-aggressive and expensive interventions, having seen loved ones virtually destroyed by such, being "rationed" to generally affordable options would be fine. My favorite author/blogger (I doubt he'd be your cup of tea) has said more than once that he and his wife will be paying the Obamacare penalty rather than buying insurance, because as private individuals, it would cost them more per month than their mortgage payment to get a policy with a $10K deductible and high copays, which means that if anyone had an expensive illness, they'd be bankrupted anyway. Obamacare has done something to help some people get care, but it has also been a gigantic transfer of wealth from individuals, willing or otherwise, to big insurance companies.

And there may not be a silent majority fed up with BAU, but it looks like there's a substantial minority who are. The Trumpists are hard to deny because they're the opposite of silent, but I think there's a quiet groundswell building for Sanders as well. For many millions of Americans, the situation is much, much harsher than "well, you'll have to live at home for a few years after college, then ultimately you'll live as well as your parents." It's more like "you may never get a job that allows you to have what society defines as necessities, you may never be out of debt, your basic security will ride on a razor's edge forever; certainly that lifelong job that gave your wage-class father enough economic security to have a house and to retire will never be possible for you." If you aren't yourself poor or low-wage and don't socialize with people who are, you may not realize, because the media don't like to point it out, how many people in this country are immiserated and see no way out.

#26: From FiveThirtyEight's live feed tonight: "The problem in Michigan, Mitchell said, was chiefly that the firm underestimated turnout among younger voters. And one big reason for that is that the firm didn’t dial cellphones — in part based on voter turnout estimates from Mark Grebner, founder of Practical Political Consulting, who provided Mitchell’s lists of voters to call. Grebner had found that people under 50 made up no more than 27 percent of voters in August Democratic primaries — for local races — in 2010, 2012 and 2014. And Mitchell figured from those sorts of numbers that it was safe to miss people who have only cellphones. “I’m afraid I just got kind of complacent.”