Moody’s analytics model has correctly predicted every presidential election since 1980, and their data forecasts a Democratic landslide in 2016.
Our Moody’s Analytics election model now predicts a Democratic electoral landslide in the 2016 presidential vote. A small change in the forecast data in August has swung the outcome from the statistical tie predicted in July, to a razor-edge ballot outcome that nevertheless gives the incumbent party 326 electoral votes to the Republican challenger’s 212.
Just three states account for the change in margin, with Ohio, Florida and Colorado swinging from leaning Republican to leaning Democrat. The margin of victory in each of these important swing states is still solidly within the margin of error though, and will likely swing back and forth in Moody’s monthly updates ahead, underlining the closeness of the election to come. Furthermore, three of the candidates for the Republican nomination enjoy favorite-son status in Ohio or Florida, potentially making the outcome of those important states even more unpredictable.
Falling gas prices are the main reason the incumbent party is favored to keep the White House in 2016. There is a degree of common sense to the Moody’s model. Falling gas prices help to create favorable economic conditions. Almost all presidential elections are decided on the economy. If the economy is good, voters are less likely to make a change in the White House.
The one recent election that is the exception is 2000, where Al Gore’s refusal to deploy Bill Clinton on his behalf in the general election campaign probably cost him the White House as Gore won the popular vote but lost a dubious recount in Florida.
If the economy doesn’t crash, Democrats are in good shape. The model results help to explain why Republicans are trying to turn Hillary Clinton’s emails into a big scandal. Without a major scandal, it is going to be difficult for Republicans to win.
Democrats have the advantage in demographics and organization. Unless Republicans can suppress the vote or a gin up a scandal, they are going to struggle to win.
Of course, the results of one model do not mean that Democrats can rest easy. The work is just beginning. As Moody’s pointed out, the predicted outcome is likely to change many times before Election Day.
The message is clear for Democrats. A landslide is possible as long as they stay vigilant and work hard in 2016.