This week, we’re pleased to host a little symposium on how much campaigning actually mattered in this most recent presidential election. Regular readers of this blog—and some occasional readers—may groan at the prospect of yet more discussion of the election. Apologies. But getting credible estimates of what the advertising and field organizations actually accomplished is still important. The temptation after every election is to give the winner’s campaign too much credit and the loser’s too much blame. 2012 was no different, especially because the Obama campaign was genuinely innovative. I’ve been somewhat skeptical of the narrative that Obama won because of his superior campaign, as has Dan Hopkins.
The symposium will include a post by Ryan Enos and Anthony Fowler, a post by Michael Franz (whose work with Travis Ridout on the 2008 election I noted here), and a post by me based on the analysis Lynn Vavreck and I have done for The Gamble. I think our stories—with somewhat different data and research designs—are quite in sync.
These posts will appear Monday-Wednesday this week. Stay tuned.