Why isn’t Barack Obama doing better? Why, after all that has happened, does he have only a slim two- or three-point lead over John McCain, according to an average of the recent polls? Why is he basically tied with his opponent when his party is so far ahead? …
…So, cautiously, the country watches. This should be a Democratic wipeout. But voters seem to be slow to trust a sojourner they cannot place.
Etc. Sigh. We know that David Brooks reads political science, or at least social science that is relevant to politics. So, I cannot imagine that he believes this election is supposed to be a “wipeout.” He has to have some passing knowledge of the forecasting models—discussed on this blog, among other places, here, here, and here. See also Andy’s post on why the lack of a landslide is absolutely no puzzle whatsoever.
To repeat: the forecasting models predict a close election. They’ve never said otherwise. This year is not supposed to be a Democratic landslide. But why should the such prosaic facts keep David Brooks from his patented pop sociology (e.g., “smart post-boomer meritocrats”)?