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Forecasting Elections with Dirty Data

By Sharad Goel

During the 1936 U.S. presidential campaign, the popular magazine Literary Digest conducted a mail-in election poll that attracted over two million responses, a huge sample even by today’s standards. Unfortunately for them, size isn’t the only thing that matters. Literary Digest notoriously and erroneously predicted a landslide victory for Republican candidate Alf Landon. In reality,... »