Tags

, , , , , , , ,

It is understandable to get depressed when you hear news that Obama is up by x points in the most recent poll. After all, polling is scientific, right? Well polling is a statistical process that if done correctly can be said to be statistically valid. But most political polls are just tools to prop up a candidate, demoralize the opposition and or to create a news story. Polls are frequently manipulated by pollsters calling the same (reliable) Democrats time and again. Also, you will see that most polls by the major networks or newspapers are taken of “registered voters”. The only credible way to poll an outcome of an election is to poll “likely voters”. Another technique used is to skew the universe of people to be polled. The universe is often manipulated to favor Democrats.

The recent NBC/WSJ poll showed that President Obama is up by 6 points in the Presidential race. Of course the main stream media and Democrat consultants are giddy about this and are hyping it up. There are a couple of big problems with this. First, it was a poll of registered voters rather than likely voters. The other problem is the sample itself.  They sampled 46 % Democrats including leaners versus 35% Republicans including leaners. NBC knows that Romney wins with independents and Republicans. Here is a table of the sample used:

Party Affiliation % of Total
Strong Democrat

24%

Not very strong Democrat

11%

Independent/Lean Democrat

11%

Strictly Independent

16%

Independent/Lean Republican

12%

Not Very Strong Republican

7%

Strong Republican

16%

Other

2%

Not Sure

1%

 

The universe certainly is not representative of the US population. This poll was clearly a way to rescue Obama from his falling popularity.

Real Clear Politics (RCP) calculates an average of several polls on an ongoing basis. They show Obama up by 1.3. However, you will notice that most polls use registered voters. The Real Clear average of likely voters has Romney up by a half point.

   

Polling Data

   
             
Poll Date Sample MoE Obama (D) Romney (R) Spread
RCP Average

7/9 – 7/24

46.3

45

Obama +1.3
Rasmussen Tracking

7/22 – 7/24

1500 LV

3

44

47

Romney +3
Gallup Tracking

7/18 – 7/24

3050 RV

2

45

46

Romney +1
NBC News/WSJ

7/18 – 7/22

1000 RV

3.1

49

43

Obama +6
FOX News

7/15 – 7/17

901 RV

3

45

41

Obama +4
CBS News/NY Times

7/11 – 7/16

942 RV

3

46

47

Romney +1
NPR

7/9 – 7/12

1000 LV

3.1

47

45

Obama +2
McClatchy/Marist

7/9 – 7/11

849 RV

3.5

48

46

Obama +2
             
Likely Voters Average      

45.5

46

Romney +.5
             
MoE = Margin of Error            
             

The RCP average of likely voters is usually pretty close. The last RCP before the 2008 election had Obama at 52.1 versus McCain at 44.5. The final results were 52.9 vs. 45.6. The Rasmussen poll is the most credible poll out there. It had the race at 52-46, right on the mark. Currently Rasmussen has the 2012 race at 44-47, Romney. Don’t get caught up in the main stream media’s attempts to prop up their candidate.