Political scientists have long debated whether the labors of the candidates, strategists and campaign workers – not to mention the journalists who chronicle them — do much to change the results on election day. The dominant ”minimal effects” school of interpretation has reasoned that what really count are fundamental factors like economic conditions and party identification. ”There has been a consensus that presidential campaigns are primarily the means by which we arrive at predictable outcomes,” Daron R. Shaw of the University of Texas, Austin, wrote in ”The Race to 270: The Electoral College and the Campaign Strategies of 2000 and 2004.”
The New York Times
Are Events on the Trail Changing Election Results?