November 15, 2004 | Reason OnlineAll year long, month after month, opinion polls averaged to give George W. Bush a lead in the low-to-mid-single digits, depending on when the poll was taken and who took it. Only toward the end, after the debates, did the gap narrow to that now proverbial "statistical dead heat." Even then, the statistically insignificant margin generally favored Bush. Another indicator was the UNIVERSITY OF IOWA'S electronic election market, which lets traders bet on election outcomes; it consistently showed Bush winning with a percentage in the low 50s. Rarely has an election been so unsurprising.
Contact: Forrest Nelson