Every four years, Americans watch their favorite news channels, tune into the debates, try to avoid arguments with family and co-workers and then, at long last, vote.

Over the increasingly lengthy campaign season that now lasts at least 18-months, polls chart the ups and downs and trends in between, tracking minute upticks and calamitous downturns, and in Las Vegas, bettors and bookies search for every conceivable advantage.

Some people look to the Washington Redskins for a sign – in all but two election years since 1940, when the team wins its last home game before the election, the incumbent party in DC wins.

Others look to Vigo County, Indiana that has voted for every president elected since 1956 – and all but two since 1888.

Pollster Pat Caddell has been a professional at predicting election results since the days of the Jimmy Carter versus Gerald Ford election in 1976, but even he is saying that this year, “I think it’s a very close call. I think the shock potential is enormous.”

Caddell is citing more than the unprecedented aspects of this year’s choice – the first woman to be nominated by a major party versus a businessman with no previous political experience.

Noting that most ongoing polls are giving a slight edge to Trump, while other “one-off” polls are conducted by little-known universities or places like Maine People’s Resource Center.

“I don’t know how they’re doing some of these university polls. You just put the name of some university and apparently it becomes credible, whether they know what they’re doing, or not.”

The Washington DC veteran said this year, “…polling is all over the place…. Something isn’t adding up.”

With less than three-weeks to go and the Redskins headed to two away games and a “bye” week before the election, the at-home win against the Philadelphia Eagles on October 16 puts the win in the “D” column.

One of the nation’s most experienced pollsters isn’t too sure, though.

“Something is going to happen here, I just sense it. Either Hillary will glide into the White House, or we’re headed for one of the greatest shocks in American politics.”

 

 

 

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