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Nate Silver and Donald Trump Jr. Clash on Twitter Over Poll Errors


Statistician and elections analyst Nate Silver has clashed with Donald Trump Jr. over the level of error in polling, after the president’s son criticized his defense of results after suggestions they are getting worse.

President Donald Trump and his allies have criticized pollsters, suggesting results have been off or even “fake”—while claiming that polling showing major leads for Joe Biden could have suppressed turnout of Trump voters.

Silver, who is editor-in-chief of FiveThirtyEight, recently said while 2020 polling errors were “worse than average” he does not believe there is evidence polls are becoming less accurate.

“There’s not actually much evidence that polls are becoming less accurate,” he said in a recent tweet, in response to MSNBC host Chris Hayes suggesting it was a “bad combination” that polling is becoming “more common and accessible and also less accurate.”

Silver added: “They had perhaps their best year ever in 2018. 2016 and 2020 polling errors were slightly worse than average but within a fairly normal range.”

Trump Jr. then shared this point from Silver and wrote: “We understand you’re trying to salvage a very lucrative career in polling punditry but it’s getting ridiculous.”

To which Silver responded: “I’ll still have a job on January 21st, though.”

The latter point seemingly being in reference to the day following the presidential inauguration, with Biden having been declared president-elect according to news networks. However, the president has continued to fight against this, launching a raft of lawsuits and arguing against what he brands the “lamestream media” announcing a winner.

Newsweek has contacted Silver and the Trump campaign for comment.

Polling for the election pointed to a Biden win and has been proven correct to that extent, with numbers showing a clear popular vote victory and calls pointing to the Electoral College triumph.