Re: CalTech / MIT, Stanford and Harvard studies
Date: Mon, 22 Nov 2004 15:59:52 -0800
From: Michael Hout
Sorry to be slow in responding.
I am having a hard time keeping up with the flood of email.
Our study takes for granted that the critiques of the registration studies. That is why we used votes in the past instead of registrations.
The Sekhon paper is the most sophisticated approach possible. Unfortunately it excludes Broward and Palm Beach counties.
The e-mail above is an answer to my letter to him about Cal Tech's / MIT paper:
CalTech / MIT, Stanford and Harvard studies
Dear Mr Hout,
I'm not sure you heard about the Harvard & Stanford ones yet, but the Cal Tech / MIT tries to counter argue your study with those
From their VTP page: (http://www.vote.caltech.edu/Election2004.html)
VTP Report: On The Discepancy Between Party Registration and Presidential Vote in Florida. This report examines partisan voter registration statistics and the Bush-Kerry vote in Florida counties, and argues that counties with discrepancies between partisan voter registration statistics and presidential voting are those that are closely aligned with the 'Dixiecrat' South. There is also a study by Professor Jasjeet S. Sekhon (Harvard University), 'The 2004 Florida Optical Voting Machine Controversy: A Causal Analysis Using Matching'; Professor Sekhon uses a different methodological approach and concludes that 'there is no support in this data for the contention that optical voting machines had a significant causal effect on the Kerry vote.' A new study has been released by Professor Jonathan Wand (Stanford University), 'Evaluating the Impact of Voting Technology on the Tabulation of Voter Preferences: The 2004 Presidential Election in Florida'; Professor Wand also concludes 'that there was not a systematic bias against Kerry due to a particular voting technology.'
Just to give you some context, I'm a blogger at DailyKos, an online community for democrats. We at Kos have been watching this 'battle of the brains' with a lot of interest. Needless to say, I agree with your paper and disagree with Caltech's (which was particularly weak, so weak that even my 10 years out of engineering school math were enough to notice). I also find it odd that their paper has no author and is the only paper in their site to do so...
Anyhow, I know you must be busy as heck and bordering on 4 million e-mails lately. I just wanted to give you and Berkeley a thumbs up for your study and warn you guys about the 'competition'
Keep up the good work!