West Virginia Wesleyan College students don’t believe they’ve gone out on a limb by predicting who will become the next president of the United States.

Students there made the prediction after examining 11 tight races between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump in key swing states, including predicting that eight of them – Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Iowa, Colorado and Nevada – will vote Democratic.

They think Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton will be the next president.

After all, they’ve got plenty of company – lots of other fellow students who’ve also successfully predicted presidential winners in the last two general elections, thanks to the work they’ve done in a “Parties and Elections” class taught by Dr. Robert Rupp, a political science and history professor.

“Even though it is very close in the polls now, according to my students’ research all of those are going to go for Clinton next week,” he said.

Students also predicted the voting will go Republican in Georgia, Arizona and Utah, which are not normally swing states.

In the end, they predicted Clinton will dominate the Nov. 8 general election with 346 of the needed 270 Electoral College votes compared to Trump’s winning only 192.

Rupp said he is proud – and confident – of his students’ work.

“The key thing to remember is that my class in 2008 the class correctly predicted 49 of 50 states, and in 2012 they predicted 48 out of 50 states,” he said.

Students credited much of Clinton’s success to her campaign’s ground organization and infrastructure aimed at getting out the vote.

“It was interesting that different groups of students looking at different states would all arrive at the same conclusion,” he said.

Half of each student’s grade depends on the election’s outcome and how whether or not they chose the winner.

That’s because it is important for students to “put their individual biases aside, and look at the political landscape as researchers who are focused on the facts as they currently exist.”

Rupp is no stranger to the world of presidential politics himself. He is the author of several publications, including a book entitled “The Primary That Made a President: Kennedy and the 1960 Battleground in West Virginia.”

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