To the many presidential primary clichés smashed in the last couple of months—the system favors the guy with the most money; small contributions on the Internet trump big givers; Dean is the nominee—add this one: A Northerner can’t win in the South. The first wave of exit-poll numbers to come out of Tennessee and Virginia give the elections to Kerry in a mudslide.
These numbers, collected early in the day by the National Election Pool and provided to the networks and subscribing newspapers, come with the usual proviso: They aren’t necessarily predictive of who will win the races but help the networks and subscribing newspapers shape their coverage for when the mad scientists massage the later numbers with their secret algorithms to project the winner. This time a simpleton working an abacus could probably project the winner.
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