He’s the guy that cracks the numbers

Bill Maher said this one on his show last week, referring to Nate Silver’s analysis of the election and why people should listen to him.  It is a mashup of “crunch the numbers” (performs numerous calculations) and “crack the code” (solve a difficult problem or mystery).  “Crunching” and “cracking” are both similar sounding words (lots of onomatopoeia going on here), contributing to the merry mixup.  A code usually involves numbers, so that might have been swirling in the speaker’s brain at the time.   Another tip of the crack to Mike Kovacs who heard this one.