Over the weekend, I compared Nate Silver’s forecast of Obama’s 80% chance of victory to a hold’em poker hand, where you’re all-in pre-flop with aces vs. kings. You’re a heavy favorite, but one time out of five, you’re going to lose.
On his blog today, Silver has increased Obama’s chances to 92%, and uses his own poker analogy:
All of this leaves Mr. Romney drawing to an inside straight. I hope you’ll excuse the cliché, but it’s appropriate here: in poker, making an inside straight requires you to catch one of 4 cards out of 48 remaining in the deck, the chances of which are about 8 percent. Those are now about Mr. Romney’s chances of winning the Electoral College, according to the FiveThirtyEight forecast.
As any poker player knows, those 8 percent chances do come up once in a while. If it happens this year, then a lot of polling firms will have to re-examine their assumptions — and we will have to re-examine ours about how trustworthy the polls are. But the odds are that Mr. Obama will win another term.