“Post Opinions is committed to providing news and content that will help readers feel fully informed, whether that is through publishing diverse perspectives or creating new and engaging products,” said Fred Hiatt, editorial page editor for The Washington Post. “As we head into a consequential presidential election, the simulator will be a both fun and useful guide for readers to navigate this dynamic election.”
Powered by a proprietary and mathematically rigorous predictive model, the Post Opinions Simulator will allow users to position five candidates against each other, change where they think candidates will stand in the polls and see what the spread might look like on the day votes are cast if that happens, and simulate changes in fundraising numbers. The simulator then runs 10,000 versions of the election based on the selected scenario and explains the most likely outcomes under the conditions chosen and how realistic it is.
“The Post Opinions Simulator demystifies these different factors that affect election results and helps readers look at political news with greater confidence," said David Byler, data analyst and creator of the Post Opinions Simulator. “We are excited to use these statistical models to look at an unfolding event and provide the data and conclusions we draw from it to think about what might happen in the future.”
The Post Opinions Simulator will take readers through the Iowa Caucus, New Hampshire primary, Super Tuesday and other pivotal moments of the campaign trail. Readers can find the election simulator here.
Post Opinions will also be launching a weekly newsletter called “The Odds” featuring the latest in Post Opinions election news, analysis and features delivered straight to inboxes every Monday. Join Post Opinions for a live discussion about the election simulator and the 2020 Democratic primary and presidential election on January 9: https://live.washingtonpost.com/post-opinions-simulator-davidbyler-20200109.html.