By Chris Chase (as posted on Yahoo Sports)

For the Redskins' entire history in Washington, D.C., the result of the team's final home game before the presidential election held the key to the result of electoral college. If the Redskins won, the incumbent party would retain the White House. If the Redskins lost, new blood would take over.

On the eve of Election Day, the Redskins will play at home tonight against the Piittsburgh Steelers. It's the first time the 'Skins will have a home Monday nighter prior to an election in 24 years. Could what goes down tonight at FedEx Field have a course in altering American history?

Below are the results from the last Redskins home game before each election since the team relocated from Boston to the Nation's Capital and the subsequent outcome of the corresponding election. (Candidate representing the incumbent party is listed in bold.)

1940 - W (Pirates) -- Roosevelt d. Willkie

1944 - W (Brown) -- Roosevelt d. Dewey

1948 - W (Yanks) -- Truman d. Dewey

1952 - L (Steelers) -- Eisenhower d. Stephenson

1956 - W (Cardinals) -- Eisenhower d. Stephenson

1960 - L (Browns) -- Kennedy d. Nixon

1964 - W (Eagles) -- Johnson d. Goldwater

1968 - L (Eagles) -- Nixon d. Humphrey

1972 - W (Jets) -- Nixon d. McGovern

1976 - L (Cowboys) -- Carter d. Ford

1980 - L (Vikings) -- Reagan d. Carter

1984 - W (Falcons) -- Reagan d. Mondale

1988 - W (Saints) -- Bush d. Dukakis

1992 - L (Giants) -- Clinton d. Bush

1996 - W (Colts) -- Clinton d. Dole

2000 - L (Titans) - Bush d. Gore

From the 16 elections from 1940 to 2000, the Redskins predictor held true.

It's easy to dismiss fabricated statistics like this as frivolous and the natural result of looking for things that aren't there. (Comb through enough info, they say, and something will randomly turned up.) And, it's true that what the Redskins do on a football field has nothing to do with who wins a presidential election. But that doesn't mean the correlation isn't impressive. The odds of two independent events lining up 16 times in a row is 1 in 65,356.

You'll notice that 2004 isn't included on that list, as the streak was snapped four years ago. The Redskins lost on Halloween to the Packers in 2004, which gave Kerry-supporting Green Bay fans a double-dose of happiness. But, the prediction finally failed the following Tuesday when George W. Bush won reelection.

Since then, Steve Hirdt of Elias Sports Bureau has changed the wording of the stat so that it looks at the winner of the popular vote in the previous election, not the incumbent party. This little trick allows the Redskins Rule to keep its 100% batting average, since Al Gore won the popular vote in 2000, thus making Kerry the "incumbent" in 2004. We think that's cheating a bit, as nobody ever mentioned the popular vote until after the Redskins Rule was rendered meaningless. But, since Hirdt is the guy who came up with the original stat in the first place (back in 2000 while doing research for a Monday Night game in Washington), we'll give him the benefit of the doubt. (Knowing that Hirdt discovered the rule in 2000 makes this clip from Mad Men an anachronism, though.)

While you will undoubtedly hear about the Redskins election predictor tonight (odds of Kornheiser bringing it up by the third commercial break: 2-1), remember that its best days are well behind it, to the years of Eisenhower and Sammy Baugh. So, Obama-loving Redskins fans and McCain-backing Steelers fans, don't fret; feel free to pull for your teams tonight. But root for a definitive outcome. If they tie, we're stuck with Ralph Nader.