Given the latest polls, it is highly unlikely for McCain to win. But not impossible.
I’m trying to enumerate all the scenarios which might lead to a McCain victory, and try to assign the likelihood of each
- The polls are wrong because their methodology is wrong (e.g. they are not selecting “likely voters” correctly)
Likelihood: low. It has happened before. I seem to recall a case in England in the late eighties, where the polls got it completely wrong, and it was very embarrassing for the major pollsters
- The polls are wrong because of the “Bradley effect”, i.e. people are lying about supporting Obama so as not to appear racist.
Likelihood: low. I don’t see why someone can’t just say they are voting for McCain for his policies, even if the real reason were racism. Why the need to say Obama?
- The polls are right, but people have a last minute shift in preferences
Likelihood: very low. Even if some change their minds, the gap is large enough that it would take a large chunk of people to change their minds to make a difference in who wins.
What do you guys think of the above scenarios?
Any other scenarios not mentioned above?