Suffolk University Predicts NH Outcome

1/28/2004

MANCHESTER, NH – In an unprecedented show of polling confidence, David Paleologos, Director of the Suffolk University Political Research Center, went on record with five predictions of the New Hampshire Democratic Primary, a day before the actual election. The predictions were posted on the Suffolk University web site under “Pollster's picks.”

“I believe a pollster has the responsibility to go on the line with predictions which back up poll findings,” said Paleologos. We went out on a limb a bit, attempting to call the election to the vote.”

In one of his picks, Paleologos predicted that John Kerry would beat Howard Dean by 30,000 votes. The actual margin with 100% precincts reporting was 26,451.

“I guess a few elderly women from Hillsborough didn't want to brave the New Hampshire cold on Tuesday,” Paleologos quipped.

In another prediction, Paleologos said that 55,000 votes would be the ceiling amount that no other candidate would top except John Kerry. The actual total was 57,788, received by Howard Dean.

“We'll have to challenge all of those Howard Dean absentee ballots from the small New Hampshire towns bordering Vermont.”

In a separate prediction, Paleologos called Kerry to win and Howard Dean to finish second, which also happened.

Serving the role as the expert political pollster and joining Andy Hiller, 7News senior political editor, in the 7News NH Bureau yesterday, Paleologos said, “We were a bit nervous during the day when some exit polls had the race too close to call.”

In his only miscue, Paleologos chose Sen. John Edwards to finish third. Gen. Wesley Clark actually edged out Edwards by 839 votes out of 217,974 votes cast in the closest race of the evening.

“No excuses here. Our last 7News and Suffolk University poll actually told us that Wesley Clark was in third place by one half of one percent. We selected Edwards because the undecided demographics appeared to match up better for Edwards.”

The Suffolk University Political Research Center continues to break new ground working with 7NBC (WHDH-TV) on the 7News and Suffolk University polling partnership. It was the first university in the nation to post on its web site all internal cross-tabulation data of all its polls. It was the first university in the nation to call the winner of the New Hampshire Primary on 7NBC (WHDH-TV) at 8:00 PM Tuesday night. It was the only university in the nation to recall undecided voters during the New Hampshire Primary for further analysis. And it is the only university in the nation to develop a Supervoter e-mail analysis model for future study.
The following are the actual predictions and outcomes of the “Pollster's Picks”:

PREDICTION:  “John Kerry will win the New Hampshire Democratic Primary.”
OUTCOME:  KERRY WINS.
   
PREDICTION:  “Howard Dean will finish second in the New Hampshire Democratic Primary.”
OUTCOME:  DEAN FINISHES SECOND.
   
PREDICTION:  “John Edwards will finish third in the New Hampshire Democratic Primary.”
OUTCOME:  CLARK FINISHES THIRD.
   
PREDICTION:  “No Democratic candidate on the ballot will reach the 55,000 mark except Kerry. Only Kerry will break well above the 55,000 vote ceiling.”
OUTCOME:  NO DEMOCRATIC CANDIDATE REACHED 57,789. KERRY DID BREAK WELL ABOVE THE CEILING.
   
PREDICTION:  “John Kerry will defeat Howard Dean by 30,000 votes.”
OUTCOME:  JOHN KERRY DEFEATED HOWARD DEAN BY 26,451 VOTES.

The Suffolk University website contains the latest polling numbers including marginals, cross-tabulation analysis, charts, candidate strengths, summary of findings, and archived polls.

7NBC (WHDH-TV) is Boston's NBC Network affiliate, a Sunbeam Broadcasting station, and "the News Station" delivering the market's leading source for breaking news, special reports, features and critical information: 7NEWS!

Suffolk University, located on Boston's historic Beacon Hill, with campuses in Madrid, Spain and Dakar, Senegal (Africa), is a comprehensive global institution distinguished by its teaching and the intellectual contributions of its faculty. Suffolk offers a wide range of undergraduate and graduate programs in more than 70 areas of study. Its mission is to provide quality education at a reasonable cost for students of all ages and backgrounds, with strong emphasis on diversity. Suffolk has a combined enrollment of more than 7,500 full-time and part-time students at its Law School, College of Arts and Sciences and Sawyer School of Management.

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