Larry Sabato and His Crystal Ball Comes to the Outer Banks

Larry Sabato at First flight High School.
Larry Sabato at First flight High School.

Larry Sabato is a pretty interesting guy. At least on stage he is when he’s talking about elections, the electorate and all things political

The Bryan Cultural Series brought Larry Sabato and his Crystal Ball to the Outer Banks on Wednesday night and what he said was a welcomed relief from some of the discourse that happens at times.

Sabato’s Crystal Ball Project

Sabato’s Crystal Ball is a University of Virginia political science effort that has been around for almost 20 years. Over that time he and his students have built a remarkable reputation for predicting what is happening in the political world.

He was very careful with his predictions on Wednesday, pointing out that some of the trends favor one party, but other trends favor the other.

Beyond the predictions, though, he brought a refreshing perspective. He pointed out, as an example, that yes, the Democrats made huge gains, but it was not by any means a tsunami. He also had a graphic of a tsunami to make his point.

Humorous in his presentation, his hour long lecture seemed to fly by. Much of his humor was tied into the presentation, so it’s difficult to take it out of context. Too bad too, because he did have the audience laughing.

His lecture contained cautionary as well as hopeful notes. He noted that even in districts that were considered safe because of gerrymandering, the other party one. It was proof, he felt, that the will of the people will find a way to be expressed.

He expressed concern about what he felt was polarized electorate. His solution seemed so simple—we just have to talk and listen to one another.

It was a very interesting night on the Outer Banks. Held at First Flight High School in Kill Devil Hills, the Bryan Cultural Series did not charge local students admission. A fair number of kids took advantage of that. Good to see.

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