Nate Silver offers to bet Joe Scarborough $1,000 that Obama wins

Nate Silver offers to bet Joe Scarborough $1,000 that Obama wins

http://twitter.com/#!/fivethirtyeight/status/263948379497840641

New York Times blogger and stats geek Nate Silver caused a ruckus today when he offered to bet Joe Scarborough $1,000 that Barack Obama will win the presidential election. The offer came after Scarborough scoffed at Silver’s election model, which showed Barack Obama with a 73% chance of victory and a big margin in the electoral college.  Scarborough sees the race as a pure tossup and said, “Anybody that thinks that this race is anything but a tossup right now is such an ideologue, they should be kept away from typewriters, computers, laptops and microphones for the next 10 days, because they’re jokes.”

Morning Joe responded to Silver’s petulance with a more graceful statement.

@fivethirtyeight Why don’t we both agree to donate $1,000 to the Red Cross right now? Americans need our help now. #HelpOurNeighbors

— Joe Scarborough (@JoeNBC) November 1, 2012

Not satisfied, Silver attempted to up the ante.

.@joenbc: Better idea: Let’s bet $2,000./ MT @fivethirtyeight Why don’t we both agree to donate $1,000 to the Red Cross right now?

— Nate Silver (@fivethirtyeight) November 1, 2012

At this point, New York Times public editor Margaret Sullivan felt compelled to step in with a column criticizing Silver’s theatrics.

Under Attack, Nate Silver Picks the Wrong Defense nyti.ms/PpvDjf

— Margaret Sullivan (@Sulliview) November 1, 2012

She seemed rather concerned that Silver would sully the Times’ image with his childish behavior, writing:

When he came to work at The Times, Mr. Silver gained a lot more visibility and the credibility associated with a prominent institution. But he lost something, too: the right to act like a free agent with responsibilities to nobody’s standards but his own.

polling guru Nate Silver gets rapped on knuckles by NYT Public Editor after offering a wager on election results nyti.ms/PpvDjf

— Geoffrey York (@geoffreyyork) November 1, 2012

Shorter NYT public editor: Don’t show people you’re a liberal partisan, Nate, even though you are! publiceditor.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/11/01/und…

— John Podhoretz (@jpodhoretz) November 1, 2012

I bet @fivethirtyeight is very relieved that@sulliview didn’t pass the “highly replaceable freelancer” hex over him

— Glenn Kenny (@Glenn__Kenny) November 1, 2012

@fivethirtyeight Yer bosses don’t want you betting $$$, so bet employment: if Romney wins, you quit NYT. If O wins, Scarborough quits MSNBC.

— David Roberts (@drgrist) November 1, 2012

At the end of it, Scarborough donated money without any bets, so at least some Hurricane victims will be getting help.

Nate Silver spurs on spirited debate. It’s harmless fun. I’m donating $5,000 to @americares in his name for #Sandy. publiceditor.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/11/01/und…

— Joe Scarborough (@JoeNBC) November 1, 2012

While I know from campaigning that politics can’t be reduced to formulas, I enjoy Nate’s blog and wish him well.publiceditor.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/11/01/und…

— Joe Scarborough (@JoeNBC) November 1, 2012

We’ve given Scarborough his share of (fully deserved) drubbings, but he did a good thing here by outclassing Silver’s temper tantrum.

Read more: http://twitchy.com/2012/11/01/nate-silver-offers-to-bet-joe-scarborough-1000-that-obama-wins-gets-slammed-by-ny-times-public-editor/

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