If one believes in the “Redskins Rule,” then Sen. Barack Obama already has the presidential election in the bag. The rule, according to statistician Steve Hirdt, never fails.
The Redskins Rule, which has long been discussed by both sports commentators and political pundits alike, predicts the outcome of the presidential election by looking at the outcome of the Washington Redskins’ final home game before Election Day. Some say it is 100-percent accurate, while others, because of a gray area in how the rule is interpreted, say the accuracy rate has only been 94 percent (16 out of 17 instead of 17 out of 17 since 1940.)
The rule states that if the Redskins win, the candidate representing the incumbent party wins. If they lose, the opposite is true. Last night on Monday Night Football, the Pittsburgh Steelers demolished the Redskins 23-6 in Washington. The Washington Times, in an article written before last night’s game, noted that even though the Redskins were favored in the game, it was doubtful they would win because Obama has been leading in the polls.
Apparently, according to the rule, the fate of the Redskins was already decided, just as the fates of Obama and McCain are already known.
The only discrepancy in the Redskins Rule came when the Redskins lost to the Packers in 2004, suggesting that John Kerry would beat incumbent Bush. Of course, he didn’t. But Hirdt, the statistician, argued that since Al Gore technically won the popular vote in 2000, the Redskins Rule still was accurate in reflecting the will of the people.
“These things are decided by fate and mysticism beyond the comprehension of normal man,” Hirdt said.
Believe what you want, but the accuracy rate is a bit uncanny. If we are to call it a coincidence, then it’s been an impressive 64-year coincidence. We’ll see if the rule extends its run to 68 years.
Redskins Rule Prediction: Obama is the 2008 winner
Stay Connected with the Daily Roundup.
Sign up for our newsletter and get the best of the Beacon delivered every day to your inbox.