Having spent most of the last month catching up on other political stories, I realized today that I never tabulated the results from Bleeding Heartland's 2016 Iowa caucus prediction contest.
Follow me after the jump to find out who has bragging rights, at least until the June primary prediction contest. Spoiler alert: it ain't me.
How many Iowans will participate in the Democratic precinct caucuses on February 1? Correct answer: a little more than 171,000.
As a group, we did poorly on this question. Most of our guesses were way high or way low. Bleeding Heartland user snarkylgbtdem would have been the winner, having guessed 165,000, had s/he not revised that prediction to 195,000 before the contest closed. As a result, RF had the best guess: 180,000. Second place goes to gellerbach, who guessed 185,000. Third place: ademissie, who guessed 155,000.
How many Iowans will participate in the Republican precinct caucuses on February 1? Correct answer: 186,932.
As a group, we did poorly on this question too, with most of us guessing way too low. If it's any consolation, many Iowa Republicans told me before the caucuses that they did not expect turnout to exceed 150,000. Bleeding Heartland user zbert was closest with a guess of 150,000, followed by arfrerick and aaroncampil, who both guessed 140,000.
What percentage of the delegates will Hillary Clinton, Bernie Sanders, and Martin O'Malley win? Correct answer: Clinton 49.84 percent, Sanders 49.59 percent, O'Malley 0.54 percent.
Most of us predicted Clinton would win by a much larger margin than she managed. Although he didn't get the winner right, zbert had the closest prediction: 50 percent Sanders, 49 percent Clinton, 1 percent O'Malley. The closest guess from someone who foresaw Clinton winning was cocinero, with Clinton at 51 percent and Sanders at 48 percent, followed by ModerateIADem (Clinton 51 percent, Sanders 47 percent) and Johannes and gellerbach (Clinton 52 percent, Sanders 47 percent).
How many of Iowa's 99 counties will be carried by Clinton, Sanders, and O'Malley? Correct answer: 59 for Clinton, 37 for Sanders, zero for O'Malley. In three counties, Clinton and Sanders tied in the delegate count.
As a group, we did better on this one. Bleeding Heartland user gellerbach had 59 counties for Clinton and 40 for Sanders, while snarkylgbtdem had 58 counties for Clinton, 40 for Sanders, and one tie. Third place goes to cocinero, who guessed 60 counties for Clinton and 39 for Sanders.
What percentage of the vote will the top Republican candidate receive? Correct answer: 27.6 percent for Ted Cruz.
ModerateIADem, arfrerick, and I all guessed that the top Republican vote-getter would receive 28 percent. Snarkylgbtdem and zbert were close with guesses of 29 percent.
How many Iowa counties will the top Republican carry? Correct answer: 56 counties went for Cruz. Trump carried 37 counties, Rubio carried five, and Cruz and Trump tied in tiny Adair County.
I had the best guess on this question: 55 counties for the GOP winner. Bleeding Heartland users corncam and cocinero tied for second, guessing 60 counties.
Name all Republican candidates you expect to win at least 10 percent of the caucus-goers' votes, and put them in your expected finishing order. Correct answer: only Cruz, Trump, and Rubio received more than 10 percent of the vote.
Seven of us correctly guessed Cruz would finish first: cocinero, zbert, aaroncampil, RF, ademissie, ModerateIAdem, and me. However, only zbert and RF got it exactly right: Cruz, Trump, and Rubio (in that finishing order) would be the only candidates exceeding 10 percent. Both cocinero and aaroncampil thought Carson would be in third place. I thought Paul would receive more than 10 percent, and ademissie thought Carson would be in double digits.
Put the following twelve Republican candidates in the correct finishing order. Correct answer: Cruz, Trump, Rubio, Carson, Paul, Bush, Fiorina, Kasich, Huckabee, Christie, Santorum, Gilmore.
Everyone's a winner! We all guessed Gilmore would finish last.
No one got the whole list right, but ademissie guessed the top five candidates in the correct order, while Bleeding Heartland old-timers RF and ModerateIADem tied for second, guessing the top four finishers.
FINAL RESULTS: This prediction contest goes narrowly to zbert, who had the best guess on three questions and a very near miss on one more.
RF and I both had the best guess on two questions, while two-time Bleeding Heartland election prediction contest winner ModerateIADem had the best guess on one question and placed second on two others.
One of these years, I aspire to win a prediction contest at my own blog.