Every four years, Stony Brook University political science professor Helmut Norpoth becomes famous. Like a prognosticating groundhog, Norpoth rears his head up at the beginning of each presidential election cycle to let everyone know who will win. The professor has been doing the same thing for years and he is almost never wrong. Amidst reports that Donald Trump did not stand a snowball in hell’s chance of winning the presidency, Norpoth nailed it again.
As far as forecasting political elections, forget the Quinnipiac polls, Nate Silver’s FiveThirtyEight, The New York Times and the rest. They all pale in comparison to Helmut Norpoth’s calculations. According to SBU, when it comes to the ballot box, the good professor has an “accuracy rate of 96.1%.” With that kind of exactitude, Gilligan, Ginger and the rest of the castaways might not have spent so much time on the Island. But while Gilligan and friends were based on imagination, Norpoth is completely real.
Simply put, Norpoth is no fluke. Whether the professor uses permutations, combinations or some other factorial functions, he claims that his statistical model has accurately determined every presidential election since 1912, with the exception of 1960. If 2016 was any indication, who will argue? He’s that good. Too bad Norpoth doesn’t rent his services out to lottery players and horse racing enthusiasts. Imagine the havoc he could wreck with bookies during football season?
In the meantime, until the next presidential election in 2020, like Punxsutawney Phil, Professor Norpoth has retreated to familiar stomping ground, out at Stony Brook University. Whether Norpoth sees his shadow or not, he is far more accurate than Phil. In fact, on Groundhog’s Day, forget the famous bucktoothed Pennsylvania weathercaster. Instead, just ask Dr. Norpoth if there will be six more weeks of winter.
Photos: Election graph – Schmarrnintelligenz/Creative Commons (CC); Punxsutawney Phil – Shannon Ramos; usage of photos does not constitute endorsement.