Tuesday, January 11, 2005

WA State Election was a statistical tie

Seattle Times quotes several people saying "this election was 99.9% accurate", including Democratic Party spokeswoman Lisa Cohen, King county Elections Superintendent Bill Huennekens. But wait a minute! With more than 2M votes cast, 99.9% isn't good enough: that's still a margin of error of over 2,000 votes. With a 140-vote margin, the accuracy needs to be closer to 99.999% -- "5 nines", or roughly the standard used by the phone company.

This election was a statistical tie.

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