Professor of Political Science at Stony Brook Helmut Norpoth, above, moments after announcing his forecast at the SUNY Global Center on Feb. 22nd, 2016. Norpoth's findings with the electoral cycle method show the Republican Party winning with a three point lead in the general election. CHRISTOPHER CAMERON/THE STATESMAN

Political science professor Helmut Norpoth, above, moments after announcing his presidential election forecast at the SUNY Global Center on Feb. 22. Norpoth’s findings with the electoral cycle method show the Republican Party having a 61 percent chance of winning the general election. CHRISTOPHER CAMERON/THE STATESMAN

A professor of political science at Stony Brook University has forecasted that Donald Trump has a minimum 97 percent chance of winning the general election as the Republican nominee.

Professor Helmut Norpoth’s forecast presentation took place Monday evening in the SUNY Global Center in Manhattan, which was organized by the Stony Brook Alumni Association.

Norpoth created a statistical model of presidential elections that uses a candidate’s performance in their party’s primary and patterns in the electoral cycle as predictors of the presidential vote in the general election.

Donald Trump has a 97 percent chance of defeating Hillary Clinton and a 99 percent chance of defeating Bernie Sanders in the general election, according to Norpoth’s formula.

“The bottom line is that the primary model, using also the cyclical movement, makes it almost certain that Donald Trump will be the next president,” Norpoth said, “if he’s a nominee of the [Republican] party.”

Norpoth’s primary model works for every presidential election since 1912, with the notable exception of the 1960 election. These results give the model an accuracy of 96.1 percent.

Norpoth began the presentation with an introduction of the potential matchups in the general election, including a hypothetical Sanders vs. Trump general election.

“When I started out with this kind of display a few months ago, I thought it was sort of a joke.” Norpoth said referring to Trump and Sanders, as many alumni in the audience laughed. “Well, I’ll tell you right now, it ain’t a joke anymore.”

As the presentation continued, laughter turned to silence as Norpoth forecasted a 61 percent chance of a Republican win in the general election.

This forecast was made using the electoral cycle model, which studies a pattern of voting in the presidential election that makes it less likely for an incumbent party to hold the presidency after two terms in office. The model does not assume who would be the party nominees or the conditions of the country at the time.

“You think ‘This is crazy. How can anything come up with something like that?’ ” Norpoth said “But that’s exactly the kind of equation I used to predict Bill Clinton winning in ‘96, that I used to predict that George Bush would win in 2004, and, as you remember four years ago, that Obama would win in 2012.”

Norpoth then added data from the New Hampshire and South Carolina primaries to narrow down the forecast to specific candidates. As he brought up the first slide with matchup results, the silence was broken by muttering from the audience.

“Trump beats Hillary 54.7 percent to 45.3 percent [of the popular vote]. This is almost too much to believe.” Norpoth said, with a few members of the audience laughing nervously. “The probability of that [outcome] is almost complete certainty, 97 percent. It’s almost ‘Take it to the bank.’ ”

The primary model predicts a Trump victory with such certainty due to Trump’s relatively high success in the Republican primaries, Norpoth said. Clinton, in comparison, is in an essential tie with Sanders in the Democratic primaries. As a result, Sanders would also lose to Trump in a similar landslide if Sanders were to be the Democratic nominee, Norpoth said.

In contrast, Norpoth forecasted that a hypothetical presidential race with Ted Cruz or Marco Rubio on the Republican ticket would be a much closer race. The results showed Clinton with a 55 percent chance of winning the race against Cruz or Rubio with a 0.3 percent lead in the popular vote.

Norpoth’s model showed Sanders losing against Rubio or Cruz with a 0.6 percent gap in the popular vote, giving a Rubio or Cruz ticket a 60 percent chance of winning against the Vermont senator.

Norpoth added that while the non-Trump Republican ticket would be much more unlikely to win the general election due to differences in the popular vote and the electoral college vote, there is almost no chance that Trump would lose the electoral college vote with his forecasted lead in the popular vote.

“If you win by 54 percent [of the popular vote], you have a big majority in the electoral college,” Norpoth said. “Nobody who has ever gotten 54 percent has lost.”



    Hillary is 10 points ahead of the Republicans’ Narcissistic Cheetos Jesus.

  • citizenrich

    Most of our stuff is highly concentrated and therefore subject to event risk. The “issue” is very low cost basis for that stuff which as you know are the townhouses, the apt. bldg. and our condo. Unless NYC real estate drops more than 25%, it wouldn’t be worth selling, at all. Do you think it’s worth it to take the tax bill hit and diversify the real property? Regardless, I’m glad I listened to my dad when I graduated. 15 years on these commercial notes has flown by. I really got lucky with child unit 1 (I’ll still need to pay for Med School and he also wants an MBA). Child unit 2 is going to be a little trickier but she was chosen this week as captain for senior cheer (isnt that exciting!!?) She told us she’s the first sophmore to be made captain for the senior squad! All those dance lessons appear to be paying off. If she can score 95% percentile or higher, I think we’ll see some good offers / packages. Definitely DOES NOT want to go away which makes the mom unit very, very happy! NYU gave out a ton of generous packages to local kids this year so hopefully that’ll stay the same. My understanding is they still don’t have enough dorms so they fill up the class with townies. Personally, I’d like to see her @ Columbia. Cheer will help tremendously on her app. and give them a reason to give her a good deal. I’ll keep you posted, homie…

  • YouPoorVictim

    “Bunk list”

    That was easy. Deny it all you want. Let me know when you have counter-evidence to share.

  • citizenrich

    Bunk list, weirdo

  • YouPoorVictim

    Here’s a list for you.

    Proto-Saharan (5000 – 3000 B.C.)
    Wadi El-Hol or ‘Proto-Sinaitic’ (2000 B.C. – 1400 B.C.)
    Nsibidi (5000 B.C. – present)
    Tifinagh or ‘Lybico-Berber’ or ‘Mande’ (c. 3000 B.C. – present)
    Ge’ez or ‘Ethiopic’ (800 B.C. – present)
    ‘Old Nubian’ (800 A.D. – 1500 A.D.)

  • YouPoorVictim

    “There were zero written languages for sub Sahara Africa”

    Why won’t you share your source? Why do I find proof of dozens of written languages from that region when I do 5 minutes of research?

  • citizenrich

    There were zero written languages for sub Sahara Africa save for one small corner of modern day Ethiopia were they used Arabic.

    I don’t care what you claim, weirdo.

  • YouPoorVictim

    So, no comment on how you were caught spreading fibs on the internet again? Where did you learn that there were no Sub-Sahara Africa written languages? Please share your source.

  • citizenrich

    I was wondering where my stalker went, I really was. Where were you? Did you blow your entire social security on drugs??

  • mathew mann

    Unfortunately, Hillary is ahead of Trump in the most recent polls. This so called ‘model” was taken several months ago. Things change rapidly during the election. I hate to admit it, but Hillary looks like she’s going to win the election

  • YouPoorVictim

    “Did you know that Sub-Sahara Africa never developed a single formal or written language? ”

    Why didn’t you respond to the list of written Sub-Sahara Africa languages I sent you?

    Where is my $1 million bet?

    “You must not be a good person and you probably have a dark heart. ”

    All of your comments are full of hate. Are all rich geniuses like yourself this lacking in self-awareness and factual knowledge about the world?

  • Niall Blehein

    ROFL from the man who spends his time calling people names and showing his obsession with a mythical “crooked Hilary” I’ll take “unhinged” thank you 🙂 Its gentler than your usual fare it would appear.

  • citizenrich

    You’re a pretty unhinged guy.

    I promise I’ll never make fun of Nate Silver again. Sorry.

  • Niall Blehein

    ROFL – its public.

    So you try to trash fivethirtyeight as biased, but you get all upset when I take a look at your public profile and see your own bias write large ? Thats enough to make a dog laugh.

    Thank you for confirming my point, You have nothing intelligent to say about the original topic – a self serving puff piece about an unvalidated election forecasting model that depends entirely on the claims of its author,

    Nice job on the namecalling.

  • citizenrich

    “Just noticed”, huh? No, I’m afraid you’re just another nosy little psycho.

    I keep my profile public because I get a kick out weirdos like you poking around.

    I wouldn’t waste my time looking but just out of curiosity- is your Disqus profile set to private?

  • Niall Blehein

    lol. All you have done with your post is to make YOUR biases perfectly clear. I just noticed that the “news ” sites you follow are fringe right wing conspiracy sites like Breitbart. I can see now why you’re so emotionally invested in this broken model. And since most polling data clearly puts Clinton ahead in most of the battleground states, you have no use for that either.

  • Spartacus Gruen

    It’s good for you Hillary bots to have some hope before she gets defeat in a landslide election. This model has accurately predict the last 5 elections since it was introduce to the public in 1996.

  • left2right

    It’s good for you trumpettes to at least have some sliver of hope before he get blown out in a fairly exaggerated fashion. This model has a big problem in that, historically the candidates in question perform fairly consistently with various demographics, in relation to candidates from their same party. For example, the Republican candidate typically performs pretty consistently with Hispanic. Trump is the only candidate to be run through the model who does not – and who in fact underperforms drastically compared to former, fellow Republican candidates. If Trump were performing typically with these various demographic groups, he would have a very good chance to win. Unfortunately for him (and for you) due to his drastic underperforming with minorities (specifically hispanics), women, and many others, he is mathematically eliminated already. He cannot win. Also, this model fails to account for the share of the minority vote and how that share is distributed within states key to his victory. This further compounds his problems. For example, Nevada, Florida, and New Mexico are almost certainly “blue” this year due to the hispanic vote – that was never the case before.

    Now if you don’t really understand what I just explained, allow me to make it easy on you. Mitt Romney lost to Barack Obama in 2012. In order for Trump to win, he will need to outperform Mitt Romney with key core demographic groups. As it stands, he is WAY underperforming Romney’s numbers. How can trump win the presidency if he cannot even match Romney’s numbers, and is in fact way under Romney’s numbers with one of the most important groups (hispanics)? Trump is not going to win. He cannot win.

  • YouPoorVictim

    Breitbart is ran by a Jew. Just so you know.

  • citizenrich

    Yes, because (((Nate Silver))) sure ain’t “hookin for business” (whatever the the hell that goofy shit means?).

    Yep, he’s a squared away guy with no biases. At all. He promises.

  • john awe

    Trump wins.

  • john awe

    Dummy, it takes 270 to win. Shows how little you know. Can it!! Trump wins the election. Deal with it.

  • john awe

    Trump wins!!!

  • john awe

    Love it! Great prediction for Trump!!!

  • Spartacus Gruen

    LOL Nate Sliver fail to predict the 2015 UK election. He also fail to predict who the Republican nominee was going to be.