Election night certainly didn’t go as some of our most beloved pundits predicted.
“My intellectual analysis of this, factoring everything I see, plus the polling data, not even close, 300 plus electoral votes for Romney,” said Rush Limbaugh.
“My personal guess is you’ll see a Romney landslide, 300 electoral votes plus, and we may come very close to capturing control of the Senate in that context,” said Newt Gingrich.
Of course Rush and Newt weren’t troubling themselves with actual analysis. But even Karl Rove, who does do actual analysis, talks about charging into battle without body armor! He goes on Fox and challenges his own network’s call.
“No, I don’t,” he said.
Megyn Kelly goes into the back room to check with the numbers guys, who say, ‘no, there’s no mistake,’ but Rove remembers Florida in 2000.
“We’ve got to be careful about calling things when we have like 991 votes separating the two candidates and a quarter of the vote left to count,” said Rove.
But as it turns out, Fox’s numbers guys were right, and the New York Times numbers guy Nate Silver was right, and that’s scary.
Numbers guys are young and smart, and they may be accurate, but they are inherently boring — and if this spells the end of uninformed cheerleader commentary; if pom-pom punditry is dead — there’s gonna be a lot of time to fill.
I guess we can still fight over what’s the real America — Norman Rockwell’s America, or the America that re-elected Barack Obama. Except with the popular vote being pretty much tied, it turns out that the new real America must be just as real as the old real America.