Pollster's winning accuracy on US presidential elections

By Gil Shefler, November 15, 2012
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Polls apart: Nate Silver (Photo: Getty)

Polls apart: Nate Silver (Photo: Getty)

He’s 50 per cent Jewish — and almost 100 per cent accurate when predicting election results.

Nate Silver, the 34-year-old pollster for the New York Times, was the man in the news last week after he called the elections for incumbent Barack Obama with amazing accuracy.

This both repeated his feat of 2008, when he accurately predicted the results in 49 of the 50 states, and answered his mostly Republican critics, who had called his methods and objectivity into question in the weeks prior to the election.

A maths whizz, Mr Silver developed his statistical acumen analysing baseball games and playing poker.

His father Brian is a political scientist whose grandparents were Jewish immigrants from Poland and Russia.

Andrea Hoffman, head of the Hillel chapter at the University of Chicago,which Mr Silver attended, said she had recently been bombarded with questions about him.

“As you can imagine, there has certainly been a lot of interest in Nate these days.”

Quoted in an interview with the Politico news website last May, Mr Silver said: “I’m half-Jewish and [my nose] strikes a nice Jewish, Gentile balance”.

Last updated: 4:45pm, November 15 2012