Grapevine: Political pollster winners and losers

And now some fresh pickings from the Political Grapevine...

Winners & Losers

After every election, there are a number of winners and losers of course.

Tonight, a list of winners and losers of the people who predict winners and losers -- the pollsters.

A Fordham University study credits the Democratic-leaning Public Policy Polling (PPP) as the most accurate of the survey companies this year.

The poll it does in partnership with the Daily Kos and the Services Employees International Union (SEIU) was second.

YouGov was third.

Ipsos/Reuters and Purple Strategies round out the top five.

The bottom of the list includes some famous ones.

Rasmussen, Gallup, NPR, National Journal and in last place the Associated Press poll conducted by GfK.

The University of Virginia's Larry Sabato tells us what happened -- quote -- "Some pollsters incorrectly thought turnout in this election would look more like 2004, when Bush won, than 2008, when Obama won. This caused them to overestimate Romney's likely vote in the swing states. They were wrong, and the pollsters who projected an electorate very much like 2008 were right. Lesson learned all around."

Poll aggregator Real Clear Politics was not part of the study but it correctly predicted every state with Florida still undecided.

Bad Bets

The biggest money loser in the general election campaign was casino mogul Sheldon Adelson. He spent more than $53 million on the Romney effort as well as funding Senate and House races.

All of his candidates lost except one.

Nevada senator-elect Dean Heller defeated Adelson foe Shelley Berkley, a Democrat.

Forbes puts the loss in perspective -- quote -- "While $53 million may sound like quite a chunk of change, it's not much for a guy worth $20.5 billion. Imagine an average person with a $100,000 net worth buying a pair of Tory Burch shoes for $250. You'd care if you lost them, but you wouldn't be ruined."

Your Vote Matters

And finally, one Kentucky candidate learned the hard way that every vote counts.

Robert McDonald finished in a dead heat with Olivia Ballou for the final seat on the Walton City Council.

One vote that was not cast would have put him over the top. Only one vote would have done it.

The Cincinnati Enquirer reports, McDonald's wife -- who works nights at a hospital and is finishing nurses training -- did not make it to the polls.

So now his election will hinge on a coin-flip.