Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Dead heat in Governor's Race

Gov. Dan Malloy has evened up his race with Tom Foley in the latest Q-Poll.
From News12: A new Quinnipiac University Poll shows Connecticut's race for governor is a dead heat.

The poll finds Republican businessman Tom Foley no longer holds a lead over Democratic Gov. Dannel Malloy.

Voters were asked who they would vote for if the election was today and 43 percent said Malloy and 43 percent said Foley.

Petitioning candidate Joe Visconti got nine percent.

Last month, a Quinnipiac poll had Foley in a six point lead over Malloy.

I always wondered why they call a tie in the polls a "dead heat".

So I decided to Google the phrase to find it's origins.

Merriam Webster says:
Full Definition of DEAD HEAT
: a tie with no single winner of a race; broadly : tie

The American Heritage® Dictionary:
dead heat n.
1. Sports A race in which two or more contestants compete evenly or finish at the same time.
2. A political campaign or other contest that is so close that it is impossible to predict the winner.

Collins English Dictionary:
1. (Individual Sports, other than specified)
a. a race or contest in which two or more participants tie for first place
b. a tie between two or more contestants in any position

Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary:
dead′ heat′ n.
a race in which two or more competitors finish in a tie.

Farlex Trivia Dictionary:
dead heat - If two horses tied in a heat, the heat did not count and was called "dead"; now any tie can be called a dead heat.

So it appears that the term originated with horse racing to describe a tie upon the finish of a race, and was later applied to many racing competitions that ended with a tie.

It's no wonder that the term has been applied to political contests. There is absolutely a sporting aspect to politics, and many people who follow races like these are not shockingly also sports aficionados.

Hunter S. Thompson has often written of the similarity to sports and politics, and the same way a person can become a sports junkie often applies to those who are politics junkies.

And it looks like we're in a real hoss race for the next four weeks! Gonna go right down to the wire!

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