Hogan Beat 16-to-1 Odds to Become Governor of Maryland

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Hogan beat 16-to-1 odds
Governor-elect Larry Hogan

A high profile statistician (the only one, I guess) gave Lt. Gov. Anthony Brown a 94-percent chance of victory in Maryland’s governor’s race. And I don’t mean way at the beginning of the campaign before Larry Hogan closed in on Gov. Martin O’Malley’s heir apparent. No, those were the odds offered by statistics guru Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight blog as part of their final predictions published at 6 a.m. Tuesday morning. (Brown’s chances were actually upgraded by a point since their Oct. 31 forecasts.)

Even as the race was tightening and national funds were directed to both campaigns, Hogan still had to face the scale of the Democratic operation in Maryland. According to the Baltimore Sun, Democrats were planning 300,000 Election Day phone calls to party loyalists, to Republicans’ 30,000.

But in the end, Hogan pulled what news outlets around the world are calling “the biggest upset of the night” with 51.9 percent of the vote.

I wonder if FiveThirtyEight will reevaluate their method for weighting polling data — the same method, presumably, that accurately predicted the outcomes in all 50 states in the 2012 presidential election. Or was this

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  1. It’s probably not the worst thing in the world for our local politicians to know that Maryland isn’t necessarily just a one-party state, and that we can think critically for ouselves. But now the actual work begins.

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