The Daily Caller, a conservative political news outlet, projected Vermont’s primary three-and-a-half hours before the polls closed. The Daily Caller projected that Senator Bernie Sanders would win the primary. Vermont is Sanders’s home state.
While it was easy to predict that Sanders would win his home state, it is standard practice to wait until polls close for news organizations to project a winner. This practice came as a result of the 2000 election when the news organizations called Florida before polls in the panhandle closed. Critics claimed that calling the state while voters could vote discouraged people, making them think that their vote no longer counted.
The Sanders campaign also noted the bizarre nature of the projection. They told the Daily Caller, “You guys are projecting a victory before polls close? Yeah, I don’t have a comment on that.” The Daily Caller, for its part, played that comment as the campaign being cautious.
TKNN reached out to the Daily Caller and the author, Alex Pfeiffer, for comment and explanation. TKNN did not hear back.