November 8, 2018

THE ACADEMY IS IN THE BEST OF HANDS: A professor of political science actual at a leading state university tweeted the tweet below. He apparently failed to notice that only one-third of the Senate is up for reelection at any one time, and of the seats that were actually being contested the Democrats did significantly better than 55.4%. This was the case even though there was no Republican candidate running in California, by far the most populous state. Anyone can tweet something foolish once in a while, but the fact that this tweet is still up twenty-four thousand likes later suggests that he still doesn’t get the underlying fallacy. (Of course, his tweet also assumes that the Senate should reflect the popular vote, but even if that were the case it’s hard to see why a Democrat would object on “democratic” grounds to winning almost two-thirds of the contested seats on a day when they received 55% of the vote. If anything, someone who believed in proportional representation should be calling on some Democratic senators to resign in favor of Republicans.)

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