“Pollsters and pundits” has become a dismissive epithet in modern politics. Pollsters, at least, deserve much better.
As the votes were counted on the night of this past January’s New Hampshire Democratic presidential primary, pollsters and other professionals in the political game began to grapple with an uncomfortable fact: Virtually all of them had been dead wrong. Despite unanimous poll results predicting a Barack Obama victory (by an average of eight points) on the heels of Senator Obama’s surprising triumph in the Iowa caucuses, Hillary Clinton was going to emerge the winner.
The New Hampshire debacle was not...