Susan Hutchison refused to concede the King County executive race last night, despite trailing Dow Constantine by a better than 14-point margin, because apparently the only poll that really counts was the one conducted by KING-5/SurveyUSA… on October 12.
Told in an earlier interview that Dow Constantine had already declared victory, she looked startled and asked, “Is that right?” … She said she was confident waiting is the best course. “Things have changed historically in the last five days. It is just too early to tell.”
Uh-huh. Perhaps where Suzie went to school they were too busy studying Intelligent Design to learn any math, so let me run the numbers for her.
King County Elections issued 1,079,842 ballots for yesterday’s election, and ultimately projects about 600,000 ballots returned for a 56% turnout. Yesterday a total of 254,261 ballots were tallied, giving Constantine a 34,879 vote edge.
Subtract the ballots counted from the turnout expected, and that leaves about 350,000 ballots remaining. Divide Constantine’s current cushion by the ballots outstanding, and you find that Hutchison would need to win about 55% of the remaining vote to slip into the lead. Even that Oct. 12 KING-5 poll that seemed to convince her she was going to win, only had Hutchison up five points.
Think about that. Hutchison is down 14 points after the first 250K ballots, but is hoping to be up 10 points in the remaining 350K… a miraculous 24-point swing. But in her own words, “It is just too early to tell.”
If this is the type of rational, mathematical skill Hutchison would have brought to the budgeting process — you know, hoping for miracles — then it looks like 57% of voters made the right choice.