WaPo/ABC poll: Dems coming back!

posted at 8:45 am on October 5, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Last month’s Washington Post/ABC poll delivered some bad news for Democrats from a sample that should have favored them (+6 among adults, +5 among registered voters).  Today’s WaPo/ABC poll shows them bouncing back. Guess what changed?  Oh, let’s not always see the same hands …

Less than a month before the midterm elections, the political landscape remains strongly tilted toward Republicans, although Democrats have made modest improvements with voters since their late-summer low point, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

Democrats have cut in half the GOP‘s early-September advantage on the question of which party’s candidates voters say they will support on Nov. 2. They have also made small gains on the question of which party people trust to handle big issues, such as the economy and health care.

Voters give Democrats a significant edge as the party that would do a better job in helping the middle class, which has been a key campaign message from the White House in recent weeks.

President Obama‘s approval rating has rebounded to where it was in July after hitting an all-time low a month ago. Also, in some state races, Democratic candidates have taken the lead over their Republican opponents or narrowed GOP advantages.

And how did the Democrats manage this rather remarkable comeback?  Well, the WaPo/ABC pollster managed to find their usual sample gap.  They went from a 31/25/39 D/R/I split in September in the general sample and 31/26/37 among registered voters, to 33/23/29 in the general sample and 34/25/37 among registered voters.  That nine-point advantage to Democrats among RVs is almost twice what it was in the previous sample.

To believe that this represents the electorate, we would have to believe that (a) Democrats have had a big month in attracting voters to their banner, (b) Republicans somehow lost a bunch of voters in the same period, and (c) Democrats now have an advantage outstripping their 2008 situation when they won the presidency by seven points in the popular vote.  Not even their own poll supports any of those conclusions, and both Gallup and Rasmussen this year put the partisan ID split among the general population at between 1.5 and 3 points.

Another point: the article discusses the “likely voters” that give the GOP a six-point edge on the generic ballot.  That’s down from 13 points in September, by the way, which comes from having three points more Democrats and one point fewer Republicans in the sample, as well as two points fewer independents, but that’s not the main issue with this calculation.  Nowhere in the polling data does it show how the pollster determined the likelihood of respondents to vote — or what the sample breakdown of that group actually is.

This isn’t a predictive model for a midterm election in four weeks.  It’s a narrative support device, conducted to allow media outlets to report that Democrats are making The Big Comeback and help them rally the troops.


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These deceiving polls will do nothing more than make the situation seem more urgent to those who want fiscal responsibility in our government.

frode on October 5, 2010 at 8:47 AM

Still going stong making $hit up. Good job!

Johnnyreb on October 5, 2010 at 8:49 AM

nine-point advantage to Democrats among RVs is almost twice what it was in the previous sample

Ed, youda man. This poll is invalid if the sample does not represent the actual population. You’re absolutely right, it’s a narrative support device and you have rightly called them on it. +2 for you.

ted c on October 5, 2010 at 8:49 AM

Let the Dems believe that they are gonna win in November…

It’ll be that much sweeter when they wake up on 3 November to find out they’ve been dumped en masse.

coldwarrior on October 5, 2010 at 8:51 AM

Couldn’t the “Big Comeback” bullcrap narrative actually hurt the Dems? It could make their supporters think November won’t be that bad and lessen their intensity to vote.

Doughboy on October 5, 2010 at 8:51 AM

So even with jiggered poll samples that erroneously and disproportionately favor Democrats, they’re STILL losing by 6.

The end, libs. See you in 3.5 weeks.

Good Lt on October 5, 2010 at 8:53 AM

“Democrats lose both Houses of Congress, corrupt incompetent Democrats and the Washington Post, hardest hit.”

NoDonkey on October 5, 2010 at 8:53 AM

Liberal media is as persistent as the cold virus – and just as hard to get rid of.
Randy

williars on October 5, 2010 at 8:53 AM

That’s a good message to send the Democrats who are wobbly, don’t worry will be fine we are coming back strong. Their average voter, good then I won’t have to vote LOL!

Democrats Progressives the gang that couldn’t shoot straight.

Dr Evil on October 5, 2010 at 8:53 AM

I’ll wait for the Nov 3 poll…it will paint a truer picture.

jbh45 on October 5, 2010 at 8:55 AM

A real poll would show a very wide margin indeed, considering we are a center right country.

This poll is just another example of the fact that liberals must resort to faking the data to achieve an outcome that suits them.

dogsoldier on October 5, 2010 at 8:55 AM

We always knew they’d do this. This pretty much proves polls are pure propaganda used to create a narrative.

Dark Eden on October 5, 2010 at 8:56 AM

I would have to say that these “scientific” polls are representative of the end product resulting from the evacuatory activity of the basic bowel funtion as occuring in the male genre of “genus bovine”

pilamaye on October 5, 2010 at 8:58 AM

I’ve got your poll right here, Washington Post.

NoDonkey on October 5, 2010 at 8:58 AM

Dr. to liberal patient: “The test on your mental disease, (liberalism), has come back positive. But, we have the ability to manipulate the results with a false-positive. There also appears to be a slowing of the disease. We can therefore call it a recovery.”

Rovin on October 5, 2010 at 8:58 AM

Well, the Democrats need all the help they can to get out the vote. Democratic swing voters will be more likely to vote if they think there’s a chance of victory, so the polls from ABC/WaPo and CBS have been carefully biased to give that perception.

There’s no illusion any more that the press is a neutral party.

Nethicus on October 5, 2010 at 8:58 AM

And the trash media wonders why their reputation and circulation numbers have fallen into the gutter.

Bishop on October 5, 2010 at 8:59 AM

It was the rally on Saturday!!

Cindy Munford on October 5, 2010 at 9:00 AM

Ed, so cynical? Tch, tch.

tree hugging sister on October 5, 2010 at 9:01 AM

Personally I like giving the Dems false hope. Makes them complacent and less interested in turning out to vote.

Guardian on October 5, 2010 at 9:02 AM

They called off the the bankruptcy.

And who thought the parrot media would sit this one out …

tarpon on October 5, 2010 at 9:04 AM

This poll is just another example of the fact that liberals must resort to faking the data to achieve an outcome that suits them.

dogsoldier on October 5, 2010 at 8:55 AM

Dan Rather, Al Gore, and Michael Moore would disagree with you DS. /

Rovin on October 5, 2010 at 9:05 AM

My guess as to how the pollsters are justifying it is basing their likely voter turnout models on 2008 numbers. Completely forgetting, of course, that 2008 turnout is not going to remotely resemble turnout this year, or even in ’12.

Sekhmet on October 5, 2010 at 9:05 AM

This is the lead story right now on ABC radio and it’s being reported in an almost giddy fashion by the female announcer.

lowandslow on October 5, 2010 at 9:08 AM

“They’re not even [within] 100 miles [of Baghdad]. They are not in any place. They hold no place in Iraq. This is an illusion … they are trying to sell to the others an illusion.”..:)

Dire Straits on October 5, 2010 at 9:09 AM

I guess that new logo is like magic, eh?

Patrick S on October 5, 2010 at 9:09 AM

I thought this was the point in an election cycle where these polls stop the shenanigans and start getting the real numbers in order to save their credibility? Is it still early yet?

Ampersand on October 5, 2010 at 9:12 AM

The Dems will not have their “great leap forward” if some facts come out.

Coons has way too many supporters from communist, terrorist groups: http://spectator.org/archives/2010/10/05/the-coons-12-terrorism-communi
Why are not the media investigating this target-rich topic?

onlineanalyst on October 5, 2010 at 9:13 AM

Oh. Does that mean the rev0luti0n is cancelled?

hoosiermama on October 5, 2010 at 9:14 AM

That’s so great that they’ve made a comeback. Now all the lazy, short-attention-span, democrats won’t bother showing up ’cause all those other democrats are voting. Are they paying again this year?

Mojave Mark on October 5, 2010 at 9:15 AM

Democrats in a dreamworld. On Nov. 3rd the fog will lift and they will be treated to the reality of minority status.

Enjoy it Dems, you’ve earned it!

donh525 on October 5, 2010 at 9:15 AM

This is the lead story right now on ABC radio and it’s being reported in an almost giddy fashion by the female announcer.

lowandslow on October 5, 2010 at 9:08 AM

Let them. Their tears on election day will be all the sweeter.

Good Lt on October 5, 2010 at 9:15 AM

It’s probably time to forget the polls from now until about 3 days before the election. None of it will be real. Just filter out the nonsense and keep the goal in mind–getting Democrats unseated and out of a job.

BetseyRoss on October 5, 2010 at 9:15 AM

This poll shows us the game plan Liberals are limited to. It’s also part of the same old tired game book, throw negative numbers out there and the people will stay home and sulk. No surprise here with this poll. The real disappointment to me is that Rasmussen has been bought up and is not playing the game honestly right now. All other polling firms are owned by the highest bidder and serve no honest purpose to the people.

Keemo on October 5, 2010 at 9:16 AM

Oh please . . . anything conjured up by ABC/Washington Post is mathematical garbage. Every election cycle these liberal/leftist slime pits begin generating nonsense polls.

rplat on October 5, 2010 at 9:17 AM

Why are not the media investigating this target-rich topic?

onlineanalyst on October 5, 2010 at 9:13 AM

They are too busy having a “witch trial”..:)

Dire Straits on October 5, 2010 at 9:18 AM

Boy, has the Baghdad Bob policy for doing business been taken over by the left or what… Jeez

Keemo on October 5, 2010 at 9:19 AM

This called ginning up viwership/readership and keeping the public interested.

Follow the money.

rickyricardo on October 5, 2010 at 9:22 AM

This is the lead story right now on ABC radio and it’s being reported in an almost giddy fashion by the female announcer.

The giddier they are the harder they yap. I think they will be falling off that horse in the not too distant future.

MSimon on October 5, 2010 at 9:23 AM

conducted to allow media outlets to report that Democrats are making The Big Comeback and help them rally the troops.”

Correction Ed…..”concocted”

PatriotRider on October 5, 2010 at 9:25 AM

Just laying the groundwork for the eventual ACORNing of the vote.

RedRedRice on October 5, 2010 at 9:27 AM

“Star light, star bright, I wish I may, I wish I might…do anything I can to make sure my liberal blow buddies in Congress win in November.” The liberal media Democratic cheerleaders…I’m surprised they’re not standing outside the Capitol wearing skimpy outfits and waving pom poms. “Ready?…OK!!! Gimme a D…gimme an E…gimme and M. What’s that spell? LOSER.

sdd on October 5, 2010 at 9:29 AM

Cynthia McFadden gleefully announced the poll results last night at the end of Nightline. Just as I suspected, another phony poll.

Ward Cleaver on October 5, 2010 at 9:31 AM

Just laying the groundwork for the eventual ACORNing of the vote.

RedRedRice on October 5, 2010 at 9:27 AM

ACORN as it existed no longer functions.

It is fragmented into local groups that do the same thing that renamed themselves.

They’re going to have a harder time defrauding voters this year.

Thank Brietbart and Co. for that.

Good Lt on October 5, 2010 at 9:32 AM

There *will* be massive dem fraud next month. Largely a dry run for 2012.

truth2power on October 5, 2010 at 9:33 AM

The MSM arm of the Democratic Party is desperate. They will be ginning out plenty of phony weighted polls to try to keep hope alive. Also, Michelle is seeking donations…preferably in small denominations.

kingsjester on October 5, 2010 at 9:34 AM

Let’s take a look at the latest Senate Rankings from Rasmussen, shall we?

D: 48
R: 47
Toss-Up: 5

Chris of Rights on October 5, 2010 at 9:38 AM

The Andy Griffith ads must be working.

BuckeyeSam on October 5, 2010 at 9:40 AM

The nice thing about a phony poll like this is it whoops up conservatives into even more of a frenzy. So instead of showing up at the polls at 4:00 a.m. chomping at the bit to vote, conservatives will be there at 3:00 a.m.

olesparkie on October 5, 2010 at 9:43 AM

OT: On FR, there is a story that Angle is ahead of dingy harry now in the latest Fox news poll…

lukespapa on October 5, 2010 at 9:47 AM

LOL… If the republican nominee for governor in the state of Michigan is double digits ahead of his democrat opponent, and the republican nominee for John Dingell’s long time held seat is right up his ass in the polls….. then the democrat party is in huge trouble throughout the country. Nice spin though.

shar61 on October 5, 2010 at 9:50 AM

By Nov 2nd they will have us all demonrats.

Kissmygrits on October 5, 2010 at 9:52 AM

There *will* be massive dem fraud next month. Largely a dry run for 2012.

truth2power on October 5, 2010 at 9:33 AM

The GOP will likely neutralize Democrat voter fraud rackets between then with investigations and subpoenas once they flip the House.

Worry not.

Good Lt on October 5, 2010 at 9:54 AM

And to also offer an initial explanation when the dead help elected a number of Democrats in close races.

michaelo on October 5, 2010 at 9:58 AM

WaPo and ABC? Sh*t, that’s like relying on a poll conducted by the DNC.

Tres Angelas on October 5, 2010 at 10:04 AM

Ironically, for each percentage point the pollsters shave off Republicans in their samples, they’re increasing actual turnout in the election by firing up voters who are already more highly motivated than at any time in living memory.

texasentrepreneur on October 5, 2010 at 10:08 AM

The Make Believe Media strikes again!

silvernana on October 5, 2010 at 10:12 AM

Couldn’t the “Big Comeback” bullcrap narrative actually hurt the Dems? It could make their supporters think November won’t be that bad and lessen their intensity to vote.

Doughboy on October 5, 2010 at 8:51 AM

Or strengthen the resolve of those not wanting to see their country flushed down the toilet any further to get out the vote.

garry on October 5, 2010 at 10:15 AM

We all knew this “comback” narrative was imminent.

It’s the audacity and predictability of dishonesty.

They have no other game.

rrpjr on October 5, 2010 at 10:15 AM

Titanic rights itself, details at 11:00.

fogw on October 5, 2010 at 10:27 AM

Ed, I appreciate your insight into these polls. What a conspiracy of lies is used to manipulate the public into keeping the elite in power. But as commenters have said, this could well do more harm than good at this point.

paul1149 on October 5, 2010 at 10:29 AM

New narrative:

Dems to gain Seats in House (around the water cooler)

Dems to create super majority of 67 in Senate (staffers)

Obama favored to win re-election by 7o% of likely voters (mostly black minorities)

See, that works! I can do that too.

JP1986UM on October 5, 2010 at 10:30 AM

D*mmit,a KOOL_AID Shipment made it through to WaPo/ABC poll
workers!!

canopfor on October 5, 2010 at 10:38 AM

Democrats always do this with their polls. They show bogus trends to help garner support. They did this with Obama against Hillary during the primaries in 2008. The closer it got to election day, the more they made the trend look good for Democrats or the person they want to win. It actually gets them several percentage points from people who wouldn’t otherwise vote.

However, if you keep calling their bluff, it won’t work.

MrX on October 5, 2010 at 10:40 AM

Tres Angelas: “WaPo and ABC? Sh*t, that’s like relying on a poll conducted by the DNC.”

What’s the difference?? :)

Justrand on October 5, 2010 at 12:08 PM

And the Dem lies and delusions get larger and larger as November approaches.

jeanie on October 5, 2010 at 12:17 PM

Well, of course. You need the skewed polls now to claim voter fraud later.

reaganaut on October 5, 2010 at 12:39 PM

I hope they keep putting out this stuff! Discourage your base WaPo! Make them think their vote is less important because they are “coming back”!

PastorJon on October 5, 2010 at 12:40 PM

Kind of a little coincidental right before the election the Market is finally showing some “surge”?

People only paying attention to the 10 second soundbites on Couric or the local news hear about the surging market and they think……”Oh, cool it must be getting better.”

Could have nothing to do with the Federal Reserve and their willingness to loan to prop up the market could it?

Naaaaah, not even worth going out to GOOGLE and typing in FEDERAL RESERVE, EQUITIES, MICHAEL PENTO

http://industry-news.org/2010/10/01/michael-pento-why-david-tepper-is-only-half-right/

PappyD61 on October 5, 2010 at 1:00 PM

CBS/NYT will be along shortly to reinforce this phony narrative.

All of the MSM originated polling data will be skewed this way. They have been doing this to Sarah Palin all year long, with the slanted samples to reinforce the narrative about independents.

They key to recognizing it, as Ed mentions, is when they decline to show their work. If they are unwilling to provide the internals and crosstabs, or try to hold part of it out, there is where the tampering has occurred and they know it themselves.

Brian1972 on October 5, 2010 at 1:02 PM

Well, of course. You need the skewed polls now to claim voter fraud later.

reaganaut on October 5, 2010 at 12:39 PM

Yes, a critical point that deserves a repeat.

slickwillie2001 on October 5, 2010 at 1:11 PM

That nine-point advantage to Democrats among RVs is almost twice what it was in the previous sample.

Democrats in RVs? I thought only white trash, Tea Party members lived in RVs.

Mr_Magoo on October 5, 2010 at 1:27 PM

ABC, and WaPo. Does anyone still watch, listen to, or read either of these entities? If so………why????

capejasmine on October 5, 2010 at 2:33 PM

Just think – by election day they will have to change the sample to 60/10/30 just to draw even in their poll – liars figure, enjoy the delusion while it lasts, cause it never lasts!

Done That on October 5, 2010 at 2:37 PM

The inevitable “October Surprise” media push to play that Americans aren’t really that mad about ObamaCare, letting go of the Bush taxes cuts, high unemployment, and a low housing market. They always wait until October because they’re hopeful that people won’t talk to their neighbors and find out The Truth. Stupid so-called “Independents” always sit on the fence then throw in for the winner. They’re not “open-minded”. They just play Fantasy Sports Leagues and watch Texas Hold ‘Em on TV. They’re the biggest group of sheeple out there. No true ideology or belief system do they have.

Democrats and the media rely on that.

Sultry Beauty on October 5, 2010 at 4:46 PM