The Carolina Panthers beat the Redskins in Washington on Sunday, which should translate into a win for Mitt Romney on Election Day, if history is any indication.

How do we figure? It's the remarkably accurate Redskins Rule that forecasts the result of presidential elections.

Here's what the Redskins Rule means: If the Redskins win their last home game before the presidential election, then the incumbent party retains the White House. If the Redskins lose, then the incumbent party is voted out.

The Redskins Rule has been correct 17 of 18 times.

The Panthers, who entered Sunday with a five-game losing streak, won 21-13 at FedEx Field thanks in part to four sacks of Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III.

The rule traces all the way back to 1940, the first presidential election year in which the Redskins were playing in Washington. But it wasn't discovered until 2000 when Steve Hirdt of the Elias Sports Bureau was doing research in advance of the Monday Night Football game between the Redskins and Titans in Washington a week before the election.

The only exception has been 2004 when the Redskins lost to the Packers. According to the rule, that meant incumbent president George W. Bush should've lost the election to John Kerry. But after Bush won, Hirdt fine-tuned the language of the rule to account for this blip.

Even without the revision, a 94.4 percent success rate is difficult to ignore. Of course, this correlation is more happenstance than science but a surefire conversation starter.

In that same time frame, the result of the World Series has also been cited as a prelude to the election. The correlation is simple. If an American League team wins the World Series, then it follows that the Republican will take the election. If a National League team wins, then it's good news for the Democratic candidate.

This rule has held true in 13 of the 18 elections -- 72.2 percent -- including the past three. With the National League champion Giants sweeping the Tigers in the World Series, that is a positive omen for Obama.

Well, one of these trends will hold true this year.

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