Nate Silver was being interviewed about his new book -- "The Signal and The Noise: Why So Many Predictions Fail But Some Don't" -- and he let drop a prediction that may give Democrats the chills.
You write in the book about the failure to predict 9/11, and you, echoing the 9/11 Commission, write that a lack of imagination was one of the most important factors. Is there anything that you, or the political class as a whole, might be failing to imagine as you attempt to predict the outcome of the presidential race?
There's always that risk, right? There's always the risk that there are unknown unknowns ... But between the fact that there are very few undecided voters, and that [Obama] seems to lead in all or almost all of the swing states, if you had the election today, we think he'd have a 97 or 98 percent chance of winning it. There's not too much doubt. But yeah, there can absolutely be October surprises, and there have been in the past. I mean Europe, for example, is something where investors are becoming more nervous again. What happens in the Middle East, what happens in Europe — those kind of things are known unknowns, and there are also economic and foreign policy risks that can occur. But I think the question now — and I think we're close to it — is: Are we at the point where you have to have something like that occur for Romney to win?
So, are we?
I think we're pretty close to it. Most of his 15 or 20 percent chance, or whatever we're giving him ... does reflect at this point the kind of October surprise scenario.
So, basically, barring an October surprise, Romney's chances are more like nil? Not nil, but slim ...Daily Intel