Tag Archives: Polls

Which Poll Was The Most Accurate

Immediately following the election, Fordham University published a ranking of the pollsters based on their accuracy in predicting the 2012 Presidential election.  Their results:

1. PPP (D)*
1. Daily Kos/SEIU/PPP*
3. YouGov*
4. Ipsos/Reuters*
5. Purple Strategies
6. YouGov/Economist
11. Angus-Reid*
12. ABC/WP*
13. Pew Research*
13. Hartford Courant/UConn*
15. Monmouth/SurveyUSA
15. Politico/GWU/Battleground
15. FOX News
15. Washington Times/JZ Analytics
15. Newsmax/JZ Analytics
15. American Research Group
15. Gravis Marketing
23. Democracy Corps (D)*
24. Rasmussen
24. Gallup
26. NPR
27. National Journal*
28. AP/GfK

At the top of the list is PPP, the polling outfit here in North Carolina.  At the bottom sat AP/GfK.

The real talk of the town is the rankings of two prominent pollsters; Gallup and Rasmussen.  These are the big guys, the heavy hitters.  Rasmussen especially given their republican bias.

However, with my new found respect for all things 538 I couldn’t help but notice Nate Silver’s analysis:

The guys at the bottom are kinda the same, we see Rasmussen and Gallup.  But where Fordham had them tied, we see Rasmussen significantly more accurate than Gallup.  And at the top?  Where Fordham had PPP, Nate has them at a more pedestrian 15th, a mere 5 slots ahead of Rasmussen.

What does this mean?

I don’t know.  Maybe it means that we’re all subject to the whims of political gamesmanship.  That it’s more important for my side to be right than it is for my ideas to be better.  Maybe the lesson is that there’s a market for such crap.

Or maybe it’s that we don’t know.  And that’s why we play the game.

The State Of The State Of North Carolina

Back and forth – forth and back.

Carolina is back to trending Romney:

Raleigh, N.C. — Mitt Romney has moved ahead of President Barack Obama in North Carolina in the final week before the election, according to a WRAL News poll released Tuesday.

SurveyUSA polled 682 likely voters statewide between Saturday and Monday and found that 50 percent would vote for Romney and 45 percent for Obama if the election were held now. The remaining 5 percent were either undecided or voting for another candidate.

The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 3.8 percentage points.

In a WRAL News poll conducted four weeks ago, Obama and Romney were in a virtual dead heat for North Carolina’s 15 electoral votes, with Obama at 49 percent and Romney at 47 percent.


How Accurate Are The Polls

Crunch time is right around the corner.  Soon September will give way to October and then it’s only one month until the election.  I don’t think we can call it over, but the polls are certainly pointing to the end of the horse race.

Are The Polls Correct

This, of course, is the $20,000 question.  With all of the polling coming in right now the question that’s burning up the inter-tubes is this:

Are the polls telling the right story or are they just pulling for Obama?

I tend to believe two things:

  1. Journalists are, by nature, liberal.
  2. We all allow bias into our belief systems.
  3. There is no grand conspiracy.

Okay, so that’s three, but still.  I do think that people who conduct polls are human, that as humans they are subject to their tribalism and yet still they try to remain objective.  I simply don’t believe that these pollsters are in cahoots with one another in order to bring about an Obama 2nd term.

Is Rasmussen Right

Of all the major polling outfits, only Rasmussen has Romney ahead or even close.  Every other poll is showing Obama up slightly or even by 7.  So, is Rasmussen overly partisan or do they have a secret?

I thought I’d check out how close they were last year:

A professor at Fordham University went back and checked.  Of the 23 polls conducted only two were wight on the money; Pew and – you guessed it – Rasmussen.  Whatever those folks are doing over there, agree or not, they did a heck of a job last time around.

And even more than that, the 3 polls that over estimated the republican ticket were still in the top 7.

Instead of arguing that Rasmussen is too far off on the Romney side I’d make the argument that the other polls are further off on the Obama side.

President Obama: How Effective Has He Been

As summer is in full swing, how do voters feel Obama has impacted the nation in his first 3.5 years in the Oval Office?

In some ways, I don’t like polls like this.  I mean, how do people gauge how a president has done, or should have done?  How do they know if he’s doing well or poorly?  In some cases, it may be some social cause that they champion; gay rights or women’s health.  Perhaps for others, it’s military accomplishments; ending Iraq or killing Bin Laden.  But in terms of the economy, I’m not sure how people reach their conclusion.

To be sure, this swings both ways.  Obama is hammering Romney for his time at Bain when jobs were lost and even outsourced to low wage nations.  The idea being that you don’t have to show that in some cases, this move actually CREATED jobs.  All you have to do is throw the stigma of the evil corporate master who only cares for his own bottom line; worker be damned.

So, it is what it is.  And for Obama, the news is bleak:

A new poll says President Obama has changed things for the worse in the United States.

A survey by The Hill, a Washington, D.C., newspaper, says that 56% of likely voters believe Obama has transformed the nation in a negative way, compared with 35% who believe the country has changed for the better on his watch.

“The results signal broad voter unease with the direction the nation has taken under Obama’s leadership and present a major challenge for the incumbent Democrat as he seeks re-election this fall,” reports The Hill.

I’m fairly certain I would have guessed an unease at the president’s job so far.  People are beginning to recognize that while we’ve added jobs, we haven’t added enough.  People are beginning to understand that each spring we seem to get better only to stall in the summer.  Unemployment remains uncomfortably high, people are fleeing the job market and Obama doesn’t have a plan.

There is significant reason to believe that, if elected, we would see another 4 years of stagnant growth, if that, with growing numbers of people taking advantage of an ever increasing federal entitlement system.

The question is, can Romney capitalize?