What’s Wrong With Economists?

You probably recall Hillary Clinton turning anti-economist in the dying days of her campaign: “Well I’ll tell you what, I’m not going to put my lot in with economists.” And more recently John McCain has jumped aboard: “I trust the people and not the so-called economists to give the American people a little relief.” Honestly, […]

Scoring the Pennsylvania Primary

How do you score a bruising fight like the Pennsylvania primary? In politics, it seems, expectations are everything. And regular readers will not be surprised to hear that I would argue that political prediction markets can help us understand which candidates actually exceeded pre-poll expectations. Some simple observations: Clinton‘s 9.5 point victory margin was roughly […]

Does Campaign Spending Matter? Ask Mitt Romney

In Freakonomics, we argued that campaign spending matters a lot less than people think. Mitt Romney‘s presidential campaign would seem to offer a fresh bit of evidence in favor of our theory. Viewed in this light, Hillary Clinton‘s decision to loan her campaign $5 million looks like the wrong move. It isn’t the money that […]

Crunching the Numbers on Sounding Presidential: A Guest Post

One of the really fun innovations in this election cycle is the extent to which the speech of the candidates has now become grist for statistical analysis. For instance, the Times’ “Caucus” blog reports that Reagan’s name was invoked 53 times last night, and by this measure Romney beat McCain 19 to 12. The Times […]

A New York Trifecta?

Now that it’s looking a bit more likely that Michael Bloomberg could maybe, perhaps, possibly run for President on a third-party ticket, you’ve got to at least entertain this bizarre ballot possibility in 2008: For U.S. President: Hillary Clinton (D-NY) Rudolph Giuliani (R-NY) Michael Bloomberg (I-NY) How nice it would be, speaking as a NYC […]