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U.S. Electioneering in Ottawa

By Alejandro Bustos on November 6, 2012


United States President Barack Obama will likely be re-elected to a second term.

The Apartment 613 election team has come to this conclusion after spending countless hours reviewing polls, early voting numbers, demographic patterns and other relevant statistics.

As Canada’s capital city, our town is filled with political junkies. Being the friendly neighbours that we are, we decided to assist our fellow policy wonks to get their U.S. news fix by compiling a list of political web sites. Our hope is that these sites will give you all the news that you need in the run-up to tonight’s vote.

And, once all the research is done, you may be looking for a place to grab a pint and settle in to watch the political event. We’ve scoured the city for election-friendly locations, phoning up bars and polling the Twitter-verse, and we’ve come up with a few options.

We were able to confirm that Darcy McGee’s and Connor’s Pub plan to show it, and we’ve received word that Democrats Abroad will be throwing an election party at the Carleton Tavern. Meanwhile in the twitter-verse, Oliver’s and Sir John A were mentioned as possible venues, while others proclaimed that they would view the election from the gym, or via Twitter itself. Check out all the responses after the article below.

If you are organizing an election viewing party or if you know of an election party open to the public in Ottawa, please let us know in the comments section below.

Now, without further ado, let’s learn how we can procrastinate from work … sorry, I mean become better informed about the critical decision that our southern neighbours are making.

The Statistical Nerds

The U.S. election has seen a large number of web sites provide statistical analysis. We can think of these sites as political Moneyball.

The dean of this new generation of analysts is Nate Silver, a sabermetrician and psephologist who runs the fivethirtyeight web site at the New York Times. His deep insight and scientific approach has directly challenged conventional wisdom, such as the commonly expressed view that Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney had momentum throughout October.

Before Nate Silver arrived on the scene in the 2008 U.S. election, Real Clear Politics was already known as the place to go for political analysis. Compiling a vast array of news articles, editorials, videos, poll results and other politically-related statistics, this site contains a cornucopia of information.

Another excellent source is Pollster, which is affiliated with the Huffington Post. If you want to look at trend lines on the national or state level they are second to none.

If you like your analysis with a mathematical flavour, there is the Princeton Election Consortium that is run by neuroscientist Sam Wang. Another interesting site is Votamatic by Drew Linzer, an assistant professor of political science at Emory University

For a conservative perspective, you can read Election Projection that is operated by North Carolina native Scott Elliott, a proud Republican, Christian and family man. While Elliott makes no bones about wanting President Obama to lose, his conclusions are always honest and objective. His liberal counterpart can be found at Electoral Vote.

It must be noted that every site noted above show President Obama as the favourite to win the election.

The Journalism Nerds Who Love Numbers

An army of reporters is covering this election. It would therefore take hours just to name every writer following this race. To save you some time, here are some journalists that we recommend.

Nate Cohn of The New Republic provides excellent statistical analysis from a liberal perspective. For those who want to read a Republican view, there is Jim Geraghty from the National Review.

Other writers worth looking at are Andrew Sullivan, David Frum, Ezra Klein, Chris Cillizza, Chuck Todd and Mark Halperin.

Early Voting

Many U.S. states allow early voting. For the most recent results, you can go to the United States Election Project, run by Michael P. McDonald, an associate professor in the Department of Public and International Affairs at George Mason University. You can compare the 2012 numbers with the early voting in 2008.


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