Nate Silver is the Stephen Hawking of the polling world, and with just days to go, his judgment concerning the state of the race for the presidency is short and sweet (if you are an Obama supporter):
To argue that Mr. Romney is ahead, or that the election is a “tossup,” requires that you disbelieve the polls, or that you engage in some complicated interpretation of them.
As of this morning, Nate Silver puts the odds of an Obama victory at greater than 80%. And he thinks the odds of Democrats holding the Senate are greater than 90%. But when I hear from the women in the below video, I cannot help but feel that ambivalence grips the soul of the majority of Americans, and that ambivalence could swing either toward Obama or Romney in the privacy of the voting booth on election day. I’ve felt intuitively unsettled about Obama’s chances of reelection for quite a while, like a spell might be broken on election day, and everyone will be saying, “Of course Romney was going to be elected! Why didn’t we see this coming?” On the other hand, I think Silver’s judgment is surely correct based on the formal analysis of polling data–Obama is clearly the favorite. But I don’t think most Americans are entering the voting booth like me, thinking it’s an easy call. And the collective unconscious will certainly assert itself, and probably reveal a larger wisdom in the end. I hope that wisdom is to give the incumbent another four years.