Which is why when the whole thing is over, the losers usually have no idea that they've lost until the 11th hour. Mitt Romney, for example, didn't know he was going to lose until election night. His advisers were clueless, his family was sure the country was in the bag, and no one bothered to write a concession speech.
Finding out he didn't win the election must have felt like finding out "Tagg" is a stupid name for a human boy. But Mitt is only one of many former presidential candidates who found themselves baffled at the end of election night. One politician described the phenomenon as getting trapped inside your own campaign bubble, but we'd like to think of it like living in a hall of mirrors for two years before suddenly falling out of an open window.
Even if an inkling of a shadow of defeat lingers outside the corner of your eyesight, what are you supposed to do with that information but suppress it? By November, even the most unlikely presidential candidates have thousands (if not millions) of people working for them, believing in them, naming their newborns after them. Nobody wants to tell baby Albertgore's parents that they picked a terrible name for their child.
Spoiler: State kills Albertgore.