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Koffler Gets it Badly Wrong

by Keith Koffler on November 8, 2012, 5:18 pm

On Monday, I predicted that Gov. Mitt Romney would get 321 electoral votes and President Obama would receive 217.

As you are probably aware, I was exactly correct.


Actually I got it about backwards. Obama beat Romney by 332-206, nearly sweeping the swing states I said Romney would mostly win.

I think I understand why I was so badly mistaken. But I’m not going to tell you, because it wouldn’t benefit anyone but me.

I’ve started giving you my analysis of the election in other posts that I’ve put up, and I will continue to write about it. From that, you will understand what I think occurred on Tuesday.

But I’m not going to frame my analysis in terms of excuses or explanations for what I predicted.

I went out on a limb and made a forecast that showed a bigger Romney win than almost anyone else was comtemplating. I based it not on wishes or cheerleading – this is a news and analysis website, not an organ for promoting candidates. I based it on what I believed was hard headed analysis.

If I was right, I would have accepted the applause from my perch above the rest of the prognosticators.

But instead, the limb broke, and I landed on my ass.

And for that, I apologize to you.



QueenOfScott November 8, 2012 at 5:26 pm


No apologies necessary. I think all of us who participate on this website landed on our arses last Tuesday night.

Better luck in 2016…oh never mind, it will all be over way before that.


JustSaying12 November 8, 2012 at 6:16 pm

I along with many others said Obama was going to win in a tight close race. That what happen basically. You can’t wish for something to turn the other way by simply ignoring reality. That what a lot of conserative pundits did and got egg on their faces.

Keith is lucky he didn’t bet me that cup of coffee.

QueenOfScott November 8, 2012 at 9:13 pm

JS12 – you are so wise. Please advise my next Pick 6 Lottery numbers. Much Love – QOS

Star November 9, 2012 at 3:29 pm

Yes–he told us again and again and AGAIN!

Beedogs November 8, 2012 at 9:17 pm

Develop a plan for the mid terms of 2014, how to take back the senate. That is our next battle, let us begin now.

cincycinco November 9, 2012 at 8:22 am

“Develop a plan for the mid terms of 2014, how to take back the senate. That is our next battle, let us begin now.” – Beedogs

Good idea. Let’s start by vetting the candidates out who might say stupid things about female physiology as it pertains to rape. That REALLY didn’t help.

Death Ray November 9, 2012 at 4:56 pm

Hey, at least you aren’t an effing crybaby lunatic like Turdblossom.

William November 8, 2012 at 5:32 pm

Lot of company there with you, myself included.

Moe November 8, 2012 at 5:36 pm

I wish you were right! Very refreshing to see someone actually take responsibilty for a mistake, doesn’t happen much anymore. I;m still having a hard time with all of this. America voted for decline, a first and I pray the last time.

WMP November 8, 2012 at 5:38 pm

Keith – my husband and I were very optomistic because of some information we had. You weren’t the only one off – there were wide ranges of win predictions – Karl Rove, I believe, being the most conservative with the margin – others way generous. I think the media, pundits and all of us who really believed Romney was on his way to victory were duped big time. I guess when an administration is phenomenal at not divulging the truth – it wasn’t so hard to keep quiet about how their internals were going. Their loose lips gave us information Osama Bin Laden, etc., but were very adept at keeping the internals close to their vest.

WMP November 8, 2012 at 7:19 pm

Let me also add – we talked about the fewer white votes. WE live in California – my co-worker and I talked about how maybe those of us in states where it wasn’t going to matter should have phone banked for other states are actually took some time off and went to other states to help out. That we also bear part of the responsibility. I would really like to know if the fewer white votes were reflected in the swing states.

Star November 8, 2012 at 5:42 pm

I thought he’d win, too—so we were wrong. As some dope said..FORWARD!

CiscoKid November 8, 2012 at 5:43 pm

None needed sir.
Its like when I played the horses; I looked at the horse, jockey, track conditions, the current weather, and the other horses. Then I placed my bet.
Damn if some, if not many would even show.
That’s what makes horse races, difference of opinion.
I thank you for sharing your knowledge & opinion and taking that risk many people don’t, expressing it.
Stay safe and take care…see ya tomorrow.

Lizzy November 8, 2012 at 5:46 pm

No the people who got it wrong were those who voted for 4 more years of this
misery. I’d like to see all his Hollywood pals try and live on what real people do but it’s Monopoly money to them.

rulierose November 8, 2012 at 8:36 pm

Lizzy you said a mouthful!

I still like Rush’s take the best: “When children vote, Santa Claus wins”

lc southern November 8, 2012 at 6:01 pm

None needed, we all got it wrong…

srdem65 November 8, 2012 at 6:06 pm

Don’t give it another thought.
There isn’t enough space on this blog for the list of things I got wrong.

Sadie November 8, 2012 at 6:08 pm

Apology accepted – but not required.

blondie November 8, 2012 at 6:15 pm

Hey I’m eating crow because I kept making fun of Obama going to high schools. Look who cam eout to vote,the Youth!!

Susan November 8, 2012 at 7:06 pm
srdem65 November 8, 2012 at 7:46 pm

They’re not alone; my forty-something daughter asked me if SarahPalin won. When I told her that MrsPalin wasn’t running for anything, she said “good, Sarah Palin is stupid anyway”.

face palm moment.

Sadie November 8, 2012 at 8:33 pm

srdem – my 40-something son voted for Gary Johnson. His name begins with a “J” – same for your daughter too -”Julia”. ; )

Face palms all around.

rulierose November 8, 2012 at 8:39 pm

this is an apocryphal story, right? I mean, no offense to your kith and kin, but how do you not know who’s running in the election and then call someone else stupid?

does your daughter watch a lot of MSNBC? there are support groups for that, you know ;-)

JustSaying12 November 8, 2012 at 9:35 pm

Sarah Palin help cost the GOP a senate seat. Sarah Steelman was leading in polls and then Sarah Palin showed up with her wallet book and gave a endorsement. Steelman’s campaign fell apart shortly afterwards and wound up tied for third to Todd Akin. We all know how that ended.

So yes, Sarah Palin is stupid because she helping make the GOP a superminority party.

QueenOfScott November 8, 2012 at 9:48 pm

JS12 – I don’t know ya, don’t know your stand on things, but I come to defend Sarah Palin. She serves a purpose and I appreciate what she does, and that is to bring a conservative message with conviction. There aren’t a lot of folks that have the guts to do that, but she has never shied from the task. I very much admired her then and now.

Susan November 8, 2012 at 10:11 pm

Thank you, QueenOfScott. Sick and tired of people who blame Sarah Palin for everything that goes wrong in the party of the good ol’ boys.

JustSaying12 November 9, 2012 at 5:14 am

If you don’t muzzle the likes of Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Sarah Palin and other hard righters in this country, the GOP is looking at near distinction.

5 out of the last 6 elections popular vote has gone to the Democrats in presidential elections. The Republicans have not had a sound victory in the presidential election since 1988! Wake up. The country is changing and you need to modernize your message. Hell, the GOP could start by stop talking out of both sides of their mouth. If you want to be the part of “individual freedom”, then you need to really re-consider your social issues stances because they fly right in the face of the GOP of individual freedom.

Crain’s business said it best. We need the Republican party back and we need the TEA party to go away!

JustSaying12 November 9, 2012 at 5:18 am

And the problem with Sarah Palin is she describes too much to the good old boy ideas. If you want a smart GOP woman who can be a messanger for the party, look at Condi Rice or something of that elk.

Susan November 9, 2012 at 9:02 am

You’re John Boehner using a pseudonym, right? Think you meant extinction, because the only distinction in the GOP is the massive number of RINOs who have no fealty to their principles.

Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity, Mark Levin, Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Allen West, and many others in the conservative movement are principled patriots who are leading the fight for freedom.

JustSaying12 November 9, 2012 at 10:47 am

Allen West is going to lose. Michelle Bachmann nearly lost in a jerry rigged Republican seat. The GOP better wake up and get a more inclusive message and ideas if it was to survive.

Susan November 8, 2012 at 6:16 pm

Don’t beat yourself up, Keith. We all got it wrong. Reminded me of Hugo Chavez’s win over Henrique Capriles. Capriles had all the momentum, but he still lost because of Venezuela’s welfare state. Unfortunately once a despot wins an election, he never loses again.

veritaseequitas November 8, 2012 at 6:28 pm

You are not alone. I was so sure the Romney/Ryan ticket was a winner. Now all we got is crap on our shoes and egg on our faces.

Guillermo Grande November 8, 2012 at 6:30 pm

No apology necessary Keith. In the past I’d always said he would be reelected, I just didn’t know how. We now we do. As an amateur I spent way too much time on the polling data and bought into the dream of what could have been. The D+ did seem to be overrated and was perhaps proven in that Obama had 10M fewer voters. But he still had enough. It never occurred to me that conservative turn out could be less than the McCain turn out. Someday we’ll have the data to see how the decreased republican turn out mapped to key state victories for Obama and the contrast to states without voter ID laws.

Ressy November 8, 2012 at 6:56 pm

You didn’t get it wrong Keith.. The country got it wrong. God help us.

WMP November 8, 2012 at 7:01 pm

Just had a conversation with a co-worker about all of this. He agrees with me – at the end of the day, don’t think it would have matter who ran against him. He used the analogy that the President’s campaign created tribes and that’s who he spent all of his efforts on and it worked. My co-worker also shares mine and my husband’s view – we think Romney would have been a fabulous president. We’ll never know for sure, but we do know Mr. Obama now owns everything – no matter the outcome.

DRM November 8, 2012 at 7:12 pm

Love your site and I was hoping you were right. If you saw Brad Pitt’s “Money Ball” movie, you will know how I was seeing this thing play out. They said things that didn’t make sense but to only a select group. I told people they were going “Money Ball” on select groups to get those certain votes they needed.
The other thing in the back of my head was this, Romney had already lost to McCain in 2008. I just couldn’t see how he could win now. And it turned out he didn’t even get the number of votes McCain did. Really sad.

For me, I feel like someone close has died. Their slippers are there, coffee cup sitting on the counter, but they are NOT coming back. It’s how I see the USA.

But thanks Keith, I really enjoy your thoughts and your website. No apology needed for me.

Melvin November 8, 2012 at 7:19 pm

Rather than an apology, Keith, I would like to here your post-mortem on where you went wrong…

levi12 November 8, 2012 at 7:20 pm

Keith I still love your site and look forward to continued reading of your political analysis. Your predictions were in line with some of the best conservative minds such as George Will and Michael Barrone and there was lots of evidence to support your assessment of the November 6 outcome.

anneinarkansas November 8, 2012 at 7:29 pm

No apology needed….none of us anticipated the ground work already laid down by the Community Organizers.
We were all too optimistic and hopeful.

Jeff November 8, 2012 at 7:44 pm

dont be sorry you didnt buy the unions, the gays, or the Latin vote, not even the college kids, he did and were gonna pay for it

GWShrub November 8, 2012 at 8:09 pm

No apology required. Any landing you can walk away from is a good one.

I thought we had it too. But……….we didn’t….and egg is easy to wash off. The best part is like someone on this website said earlier….Obama owns it now, he doesn’t have anyone to blame for the past 4 years, so now he has to deal with it. I can wait….and watch……and pray, prepare for the 2014 mid-terms, & buy more ammo.

John Henderson November 8, 2012 at 8:12 pm

You had plenty of company. I came to believe he was going to win also. I’m still in shock that he did, but coming from MA a DEM winning is the rule of law.

Girly1 November 8, 2012 at 8:31 pm

No need for apologies, Keith. This election caught everyone off-guard. By the time we settled in for a long winter’s night, it was over! Couldn’t believe it. Didn’t even get a cliff-hanger.

After the third debate, my un-scientific opinion was that Romney’s goose was cooked. Not a peep about Benghazi. Then came ‘Sarah’, and his momentum was gone. I still have the tape of the first debate – the worst performance of a sitting POTUS in history. Obama will never live it down.

In a perverse way I’m happy Obama will have to clean up his own mess. Visions of impeachment are dancing in my head – tis the season to be jolly!

Jimmy Neutron November 8, 2012 at 8:36 pm

Keith – Admitting you were mistaken and explaining why is appropriate. Apologizing is not appropriate, or at least unnecessary in my opinion. Keep up the great work. And, I’d be more interested in your opinions on Benghazi than on your mistaken election guess.


rulierose November 8, 2012 at 9:09 pm

Rasmussen and Gallup got it wrong too, Keith, and they’ve been doing this a lot longer than you have.

I was distressed about the election results, especially since I’d worked on the Romney campaign here in Michigan–not hard enough obviously. and I do think the country’s in serious trouble now.

but the saddest thing to me is how they “Palinized” Mitt Romney. here’s a guy who is a genuinely DECENT person, by all accounts. and yet half the country now thinks he’s a nasty, evil schemer who likes firing people and is responsible for someone losing their healthcare and dying of cancer. truly disgusting.

Beedogs November 8, 2012 at 9:16 pm

You did not let us down. Romney did not let us down. Our fellow citizens let us and our nation down. I was as confident as you. The war is not lost, only this battle. Mid terms, 2014, Senate. Join the fight, take back the Senate.

Julie Brueckheimer November 8, 2012 at 11:17 pm

Exactly! Romney is a good man who would have made a great President. The fault likes with the people who let him down.

Julie Brueckheimer November 8, 2012 at 11:18 pm

Lies, sheesh. I have been making so many typos since he lost. Upset, that’s what I am.

Teresa November 8, 2012 at 9:41 pm

When I was a kid in the 60s, I remember watching the occasional USSR newscaster on American TV and thinking, “don’t the people of Russia realize that the newscaster is just an arm of their terrible government? That nothing they’re saying is true?” (Yes, I thought communism was wrong at a tender age.) Now, at a more mature age, I see our press doing the same thing: protecting and promoting the president’s agenda. No opposing candidate could win against the power of the press.

Quintis Arrius November 8, 2012 at 10:20 pm

I had Romney at 271 without Ohio. Go figure.
One tiny bright spot: North Carolina is TOTALLY REPUBLICIAN. The local media is going nuts. Typical tagline always starts with: “The Republican-controlled State Senate/Assembly or the newly elected Republican Governor-elect.” You all remember our previous governor who said “maybe we should suspend state and national elections since the economy was going so badily” Gov. Bev Perdue had her “47%” moment speaking to a women’s group.
You have been very entertaining and insightful on many fronts. I really enjoy the thoughts and observations from inside the WH. Great discussion threads, too.
Keep up the great site!

CrystalCity November 8, 2012 at 10:47 pm

No apologies needed. So many folks feel sucker-punched by the outcome of this election, you’re not alone. Your writing (when serious) is thoughtful, and when you are not so serious, it provides great perspective – every day!

Keith Koffler November 8, 2012 at 10:50 pm

Thanks everyone, nice of you.

Rick November 9, 2012 at 9:28 am

Nobody is talking about the elephant in the room – the rigged voting software. Seems like the obvious cause for this outcome.

Julie Brueckheimer November 8, 2012 at 11:15 pm

Those swing states for the most part could have gone either way, Keith. So many votes were bought in some way even though it wasn’t in cash. I have to say that I am disappointed in the voters who didn’t show up for Romney though they were expected to. Maybe it was his Mormonism they didn’t like. Maybe it was the Fundies who are eagerly waiting for the end of everything. Well, they gave it a good nudge in that direction.

barkley pontree November 9, 2012 at 12:18 am

Crap, Keith, lots of us were wrong. We all saw what you did, but we didn’t see some strange things, like the number of military ballots that arrived late and won’t be counted, the republican vote that did not show up, and who knows with all the stories of people voting one way and it showing up the opposite. I don’t know either. There were lots of people thinking the same way you did, me included. The only thing that was making me nervous was Dick Morris was predicting along the same lines and he is always wrong.

I don’t know, keith, maybe all those people you see on things like Jay Walking, the really stupid people that think the civil war was in 1940 and stuff, maybe that is the real america now. I don’t get it either. I understood Obama winning in 2008, but to think people voted for someone with no plan, four years of failure, who still blame Bush, I don’t get it.

You are still one of the best sites on the web.

AZ Granny November 9, 2012 at 1:30 am

The apology is appreciated Keith, but not necessary. Thank you for all hard work and for giving us a great place to hang out.

The Original November 9, 2012 at 1:50 am

Keith, I don’t think you got it wrong. I think that there were some serious high jinx on election night. None of what we were reading or hearing added up to what happened. I bet there were hundreds of thousand, probably millions, of votes for Gov. Romney that went uncounted. There is no reason for the way the election ended. All I know is that I will not listen to one word he says. I don’t want him bouncing up and down steps. I don’t want to see his face. I do not want to see his wife.

I am a business person who is now having to consider closing my doors. Now, we have this poseur in the Oval Office for the next 4 years. More problems upon problems.

I wonder how those who voted for BO will like it when gas and milk prices both hit $10 per gallon.

Aileen November 9, 2012 at 4:20 am

No apology necessary – many, many, many of us made a “it’s gonna be Romney by a landslide” prediction. I still do not understand what happened.

Just2old November 9, 2012 at 6:55 am

I got it just as wrong as you did Keith. We underestimated the obama machine and gave Americans too much intellectual credit. Now, on to the mid-terms.

nlynch November 9, 2012 at 7:22 am

No apologies needed.
Keep up the good/hard work.
Many thanks from Texas.

Carshop November 9, 2012 at 8:18 am

Keith, ALL the traditional pollsters made the same mistake. Now we have to move on and regroup. I am ready to get going, just not sure where to spend my energy. I’m a conservative not republican so i don’t think the Repubs are going to pay attention…

roger November 9, 2012 at 8:38 am

Keith…There are a whole bunch of us on the ground on our bums….what obviously happened, that we didn’t think would, is the takers out-number the makers and the takers voted to take more……the takers are in for a rude awakening when the makers decide ‘enough’… Margaret Thatcher said…soon we will run out of OPM (other peoples money)…….
still love ya,

Tom Poole November 9, 2012 at 9:36 am

No apologies necessary, events changed the election so whatever anyone thought was smoke. Consider:
1. If the hurricane that hit the East coast had come a week later we could have won.
2. If the administration had ztold us about the fireing on our drone by Iran on the thursday before the election we could have won.
3. If the MSM had not done its best to cover the Benghazi debacle we could have won.
4.And if the GOTV effort (in Ohio particularly), had been as effective as it should have been we also could have won.
But all that is , as we used to say when I was a sprout, ‘looking at the south side of a northbound mule’.
We will have to change the Senate, so lets get on with finding Conservatives willing to give it a try.

barkley pontree November 9, 2012 at 12:14 pm

you know what else is pissing me off this morning? all the announcements businesses are making of massive layoffs due to Obamacare. Why did they wait until after the election? Why didn’t they make these announcements in October?

Danceswithtruth November 9, 2012 at 1:33 pm

The limb broke. Yep, too many of us out there on that limb with you. At least we have good company while tending to our sore behinds.

Star November 9, 2012 at 3:34 pm

Now THAT is positive thinking!