Obama’s “Osama bounce” (Pt. 2): The curious NYT/CBS poll

posted at 5:36 pm on May 4, 2011 by Karl

After analyzing yesterdays insta-polls on the killing of Osama bin Laden — and any resulting effect on Pres. Obama’s political standing — I had not planned on revisiting the issue. However, today’s NYT/CBS poll is sufficiently strange to warrant special attention:

Support for President Obama has risen sharply following the killing of Osama bin Laden by American military forces in Pakistan, with a majority now approving of his overall job performance, as well as his handling of foreign policy, the war in Afghanistan and the threat of terrorism, according to the latest New York Times/CBS News poll.

The glow of national pride seemed to rise above partisan politics, as support for the president rose significantly among both Republicans and independents. In all, 57 percent said they now approved of the president’s job performance, up from 46 percent last month.

That 11% boost is not much higher than the 9% reported yesterday by the WaPo/Pew poll. It is margin-of-error type stuff — given the historical pro-Obama house effect of the NYT/CBS poll, it is hardly noticeable. Yet there are two points worth noting.

First, there is the usual NYT/CBS sample weighting. The D/R/I party ID of the raw sample was 36/24/32, which was reweighted (pdf) only slightly to 36/24/40. That’s slightly more skewed to the Dems than the last NYT/CBS poll Ed Morrissey mocked in April. For comparison, Gallup recently reported that Democratic Party identification dropped to a 22-year low in 2010, for a D/R/I breakdown of 31/29/38. By that measure, the NYT/CBS Democratic skew is 10%.

However, the skewed sample is standard operating procedure for the NYT/CBS combine. The truly strange thing about this particular poll is tucked away in the paper’s separate explanation of how it was conducted:

The latest New York Times/CBS News poll is based on telephone interviews conducted May 2 and 3 with 532 adults throughout the United States.

The poll’s respondents had also been interviewed in a separate poll conducted April 28 to May 1 by CBS News, before President Obama’s announcement of Osama bin Laden’s death.

The 11% bounce reported in this poll is measured from the NYT/CBS poll taken April 15-20, 2011, not the poll taken taken just before bin Laden was killed. The 9% bounce reported by WaPo/Pew was by comparison to a poll taken March 30 – April 3. Looking at the RCP poll average for Obama’s job approval reveals that Obama was in a downward trend at the start of April that bottomed on April 20th and had been heading fairly steadily upward ever since. Indeed, Obama hit a low of 41% in the Gallup poll on April 15 but stood at 46% in that poll last weekend. Measured from April 15, Obama’s current Gallup number of 50% (and it’s likely to be a couple of points higher tomorrow, given the rolling 3-day average) would give him a bounce just below the average historical 13% bounce (which can be found at the first link in this post), but the modern news/polling cycle now tells us the actual bounce is maybe five or six percent or — per the CNN and NewsBeast polls in the field last weekend — even less.

We now know that NYT/CBS was also in the field last weekend before bin Laden’s death. It is possible that their April 28 – May 1 poll was about something other than politics, but it seems unlikely, given the other news organizations’ polls. The herd mentality of establishment journalism is well known. Plus, the only other poll-driven story the NYT has run since ObL’s death is based on leftover data from March. It should have occurred to the NYT (and CBS) that if your explanation of a poll raises more questions than it answers, you probably have more ‘splainin to do.


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PPP was talking about live interview polls on Twitter a couple of days ago. Pointed out when someone’s talking to an actual person they’re more likely to feel obliged to say they approve of Obama because of the Osama killing, similar to why live interviews showed higher approvals after the inauguration.

galenrox on May 4, 2011 at 5:41 PM

Let the man have his bounce… if you don’t give him proper credit people won’t listen to proper critiques…

BTW, I think Weigel on twitter said Obama had his lowest rating on the economy he’s ever had in that NYTimes poll…

ninjapirate on May 4, 2011 at 5:41 PM

Wow, what a tedious post. Borrrrrrrrrrrrrr RING.

bifidis on May 4, 2011 at 5:47 PM

It took me $52 to fill up my tank last weekend. Sorry, obaka, you’re still teh sux…

ladyingray on May 4, 2011 at 5:52 PM

with a majority now approving of his overall job performance

Hahahahahaha!

Might I suggest a logo for the NYT/CBS poll – A FREAKING WATER BUCKET!

GarandFan on May 4, 2011 at 5:53 PM

I expected him to receive a tremendous bounce and am surprised it’s not more like a 20% increase.

But it’s a complete non-issue to me. Whether you are a conservative or an Obamazombie, we can all celebrate and be happy together about this.

Polynath on May 4, 2011 at 5:53 PM

Let the man have his bounce… if you don’t give him proper credit people won’t listen to proper critiques…

BTW, I think Weigel on twitter said Obama had his lowest rating on the economy he’s ever had in that NYTimes poll…

ninjapirate on May 4, 2011 at 5:41 PM

The problem is these polls are so biased they have devolved into mathematical garbage . . . this isn’t Obama’s bounce, it’s the pollsters bounce.

rplat on May 4, 2011 at 5:54 PM

I am not sure people are in the mood for a big bounce. I have heard more people complain about gas prices than I have heard people talking about Osama. It is kind of strange.

Terrye on May 4, 2011 at 5:54 PM

How big a bounce if THIS is even partly true and gets out?

No attribution, so take it with a grain of salt, but not unbelievable.

fred5678 on May 4, 2011 at 5:55 PM

Why, I’d all but forgotten the debt, deficit, lack of oil, and the 3 wars we’re fighting.

Happy days are here again…..

BobMbx on May 4, 2011 at 5:57 PM

Rasmussen shows no bounce. In any event, liberals ejaculate prematurely.

Schadenfreude on May 4, 2011 at 6:01 PM

Yeah, well…. tomorrow when he spikes his football at Ground Zero and takes yet ANOTHER victory lap while reading his teleprompters he’ll be right back in the toilet.

I don’t think the people of New York will appreciate him coming there for the first time since 2008… For what? Where was he at the last 9/11 memorials? Absent.

Why not wait till Memorial Day, Obama? Don’t you think that would be a more appropriate time? Or would that have cut into your next vacay on Martha’s Vinyard with Mooch?

Oh, yes, now I see.

/Spit

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 6:02 PM

Let the man have his bounce… if you don’t give him proper credit people won’t listen to proper critiques…

BTW, I think Weigel on twitter said Obama had his lowest rating on the economy he’s ever had in that NYTimes poll…

ninjapirate on May 4, 2011 at 5:41 PM

I expressly gave Obama his share of the credit yesterday. This post is not about denying a bounce as such. Rather, there are two main points.

First, the NYT likely did a political poll right before the event and did not release the results for comparison (or explain that the weekend poll was not political).

Second, talk of bounces in general inherently depends on the “reference” measurement. This explains why WaPo and NYT show a much larger bounce than CNN and NewsBeast do. There’s nothing inherently biased in choosing last month’s numbers as the baseline. Indeed, the historical examples linked yesterday likely involved gaps that big, as Gallup wasn’t running a daily tracker in 1941. However, there is arguably a bias involved in using an older baseline if you have a more recent baseline. And the NYT may have that more recent baseline, but chose not to publish it. The focus here is on the NYT/CBS polling unit, not on Obama.

As to the final point, Weigel is correct that the NYT numbers on Obama’s handling of the economy are not good, even with the skewed sample. They aren’t good in any of the polls discussed.

Karl on May 4, 2011 at 6:02 PM

Keep watching your food and gasoline bills.

Schadenfreude on May 4, 2011 at 6:02 PM

All the air was let out of that bounce once he decided not to release OBL’s pic. Ha..Ha

moonsbreath on May 4, 2011 at 6:02 PM

How big a bounce if THIS is even partly true and gets out?

No attribution, so take it with a grain of salt, but not unbelievable.

fred5678 on May 4, 2011 at 5:55 PM

It IS getting out Fred. And when you compare that report with the photo of the decade you’ll see why it all makes so much sense. Obama in his golfie outfit and Hillary and Gates at the helm.

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 6:03 PM

Weird that Fox fell for the bounce and go-go ga-ga’d over Obama this morning.

Schadenfreude on May 4, 2011 at 6:03 PM

Obama is henpecked and remains a child. No news.

Schadenfreude on May 4, 2011 at 6:04 PM

Weird that Fox fell for the bounce and go-go ga-ga’d over Obama this morning.

Schadenfreude on May 4, 2011 at 6:03 PM

I noticed that too. Made me cough up me coffee a little.

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 6:05 PM

Here’s the thing, killing Osama is not a magic cure all for our many, many problems, people get that – I’d think most people were not even giving much thought to OBL before he became fish food…

Mind you, if the Right tried to sell OBL’s death as a magic cure all the they’d be blasted for it.

Sharr on May 4, 2011 at 6:08 PM

How big a bounce if THIS is even partly true and gets out?

No attribution, so take it with a grain of salt, but not unbelievable.

fred5678 on May 4, 2011 at 5:55 PM

I realize it is unattributed as to source but you are right that it is “not unbelievable” (or, rather, IS BELIEVABLE). I’ve assumed as much already…that it is very likely (“likely,” let me leave it at that) that Barack Obama was hesitant, undecided, that his actual INTENT was to drag out any decision that might “harm” Osama bin Laden with any finality, that Obama was playing cards in his head taking as much time as he could after being told that Intelligence had identified where OSB was located.

I get the impression that Obama’s sympathies are not with the U.S. and as with so many other values and moral issues, his “head” (or deck of cards) is with Islam. So he’s working our system toward some goal he has in mind of altering who we are toward another thing.

He was likely told that a decision was required and even then he delayed while trying to conjure some possibility that he could use to HIS benefit, that wouldn’t involve being “too harsh against the Muslim”…

Well, God works in mysterious ways. Maybe Panetta was that way in this instance, certainly our military was.

Lourdes on May 4, 2011 at 6:09 PM

Good read, from the boss emerita.

Schadenfreude on May 4, 2011 at 6:10 PM

As to Obama’s Osama-Bounce, I reckon it’s going to be a short bounce, then a long thud.

Lourdes on May 4, 2011 at 6:11 PM

Wow, what a tedious post. Borrrrrrrrrrrrrr RING.

bifidis on May 4, 2011 at 5:47 PM

Bon voyage!

Schadenfreude on May 4, 2011 at 6:11 PM

I can’t wait for the New York Times/CBS News poll to tell me who to vote for…

/

Seven Percent Solution on May 4, 2011 at 6:13 PM

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 6:05 PM

The “FOX & Friends” crew no doubt? Glad I missed it.

bernzright777 on May 4, 2011 at 6:16 PM

Any truth to this…

Obama hesitated, Pinetta gave order.

and

Obama Overridden by Military

Or just bogus reporting.

AverageJoe on May 4, 2011 at 6:18 PM

Yeah, well…. tomorrow when he spikes his football at Ground Zero and takes yet ANOTHER victory lap while reading his teleprompters he’ll be right back in the toilet.

I don’t think the people of New York will appreciate him coming there for the first time since 2008… For what? Where was he at the last 9/11 memorials? Absent.

Why not wait till Memorial Day, Obama? Don’t you think that would be a more appropriate time? Or would that have cut into your next vacay on Martha’s Vinyard with Mooch?

Oh, yes, now I see.

/Spit

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 6:02 PM

Well, he DID spend Good Friday (just past) in New York talking about himself and asking New Yorkers to pay him more. Oh, and reminding them that he was born in Hawaii.

Lourdes on May 4, 2011 at 6:18 PM

Wow, what a tedious post. Borrrrrrrrrrrrrr RING.

bifidis on May 4, 2011 at 5:47 PM

The saddest part? This is actually bifidis’s A-Game.

Good Solid B-Plus on May 4, 2011 at 6:18 PM

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 6:05 PM

The “FOX & Friends” crew no doubt? Glad I missed it.

bernzright777 on May 4, 2011 at 6:16 PM

I can’t figure where Fox is going lately. They certainly are on some sort of Obama Juice that the rest of us find entirely icky.

Lourdes on May 4, 2011 at 6:19 PM

AverageJoe on May 4, 2011 at 6:18 PM

The “photo of the decade” tells the whole story. Look at little barry in his golfie duds sitting in the corner like a terrified child, while Daly stands behind him like a school monitor; Hillary is literally biting her hand off out of concern and Gates is next to Hillary.

If Obama continues his victory tour, more of this information will come out. The MSM won’t be able to supress it.

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 6:22 PM

I can’t figure where Fox is going lately. They certainly are on some sort of Obama Juice that the rest of us find entirely icky.

Lourdes on May 4, 2011 at 6:19 PM

They’re going wobbly.

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 6:24 PM

532 adults throughout the United States.

That’s the size of the sampling, they are projecting on to 310,000,000.00 people to average? Not all of which are eligible to actually vote.

Dr Evil on May 4, 2011 at 6:39 PM

Obama should release the Bin Laden photos. The Reuters pictures are out: ‘Reuters Releases Pictures From Osama Bin Laden Raid! — ADDED! Reuters Updates With Report and Photos!’ They pulled ‘em for a little while, but they’re back up now.

Donald Douglas on May 4, 2011 at 6:40 PM

It’s just a dead Osama bounce.

Dhuka on May 4, 2011 at 6:42 PM

Wow, what a tedious post. Borrrrrrrrrrrrrr RING.

bifidis on May 4, 2011 at 5:47 PM

Go change your diaper darlin’
It is sufficiently pi$$ed in.

OmahaConservative on May 4, 2011 at 6:47 PM

FANTASTIC POST…
I love data like this…

mjbrooks3 on May 4, 2011 at 6:49 PM

I looked at the polls used for the RCP average and noticed that all the polls that show a large bounce are under 1000 people and of Adults, not registered voters and not likely voters.

The only one who is doing registered voters is Rasmussen.

I am actually surprised that Gallup was so unbumpy. But they also had a larger sample.

These polls are expectation driven. Everyone knows they are expected to say that he is doing better. Especially the first day, to say anything else would be unpatriotic.

I don’t think this is real approval for Obama. It is just a good event.

I am pleased, not ecstatic, that bin Laden is gone. But I honestly was okay with it the way it was before.

The media is trying to develop a narrative about how Obama was able to change people’s minds with his brave action. But it’s not going to work.

petunia on May 4, 2011 at 6:49 PM

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 6:22 PM

It looks like an Air Force 2 star is in the command chair. Obama’s demeanor appears to be like he thinks he’s being kept in detention. If any part of the story surrounding this is true he should be toast.

chemman on May 4, 2011 at 6:50 PM

They’re going wobbly.

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 6:24 PM

My wobbly conservative brother in TX tried to get me to give 0bama some credit during an hour long phone convo.
I didn’t budge.

OmahaConservative on May 4, 2011 at 6:50 PM

Any truth to this…

Obama hesitated, Pinetta gave order.

and

Obama Overridden by Military

Or just bogus reporting.

AverageJoe on May 4, 2011 at 6:18 PM

That last story says Obama was pulled off the golf course to come into the meeting already started.

So are there pictures of what he was wearing on the golf course that morning?

That does look like it could be a golf shirt, but does he usually golf in a plain white golf shirt? That is a bit unusual isn’t it?

He could have changed shirts but, then again, the story says he went straight into the meeting.

petunia on May 4, 2011 at 6:56 PM

Obama’s bounce won’t last 4 weeks, which is how long President Reagan’s lasted, after the summit with the ruskies.

Schadenfreude on May 4, 2011 at 6:57 PM

It looks like an Air Force 2 star is in the command chair. Obama’s demeanor appears to be like he thinks he’s being kept in detention. If any part of the story surrounding this is true he should be toast.

chemman on May 4, 2011 at 6:50 PM

The source only posts every few months or so. All of them have been spot on. This last one has so many intricate details that it is hard to ignore or to dismiss. As they say, a picture speaks a thousand words.

And if you check out Weasel Zippers, he had a post from AP that actually fawned over the fact that Obama wore his golf shoes into the Oval Office. That lends further credence to the fact that he was literally yanked off the golf course and forced to make a decision. And Valerie Jarrett has been AWOL ever since.

If you want to know who’s FUBARing the country it is likely Valerie Jarrett. She needs to be brought in to testify before Congress as to her role, her influence and what it is that she has on Obama that is making it her puppet.

The post is going viral, make no mistake. Gates is pissed, Panetta is pissed, Hillary is pissed and Patreus is pissed.

Gives us a second look at the “shake up” by moving Panetta to Def Sec and Patreus to head the CIA. WTF

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 6:59 PM

Obama’s bounce won’t last 4 weeks, which is how long President Reagan’s lasted, after the summit with the ruskies.

Schadenfreude on May 4, 2011 at 6:57 PM

Will Osama’s death lower gas or food prices… Yeah, I thought not.

Allapundit it correct that not too many people will care in a few weeks.

tetriskid on May 4, 2011 at 7:00 PM

That does look like it could be a golf shirt, but does he usually golf in a plain white golf shirt? That is a bit unusual isn’t it?

He could have changed shirts but, then again, the story says he went straight into the meeting.

petunia on May 4, 2011 at 6:56 PM

P~

Which photo are you looking at? The one “For the Decades” has him seated in a corner with a dark windbreaker with Daly standing over him, like a monitor.

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 7:01 PM

Very fishy….

Panetta admits video blackout during raid and that Navy Seals made final decision to kill Osama.

So what exactly were they watching in the photo? And why is Panetta messing with the meme that Obama was in charge all the time?

AverageJoe on May 4, 2011 at 7:01 PM

Staged photos, staged speech, and now we have a staged bounce.

America knows these type things for what they are lies.

tarpon on May 4, 2011 at 7:09 PM

P~

Which photo are you looking at? The one “For the Decades” has him seated in a corner with a dark windbreaker with Daly standing over him, like a monitor.

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 7:01 PM

It looked to me like he threw a suit jacket over a golf shirt.

I just did a google image search and he wears a white shirt all the time on the golf course. I guess I assumed it would be a colored shirt, I don’t know why… but there are even pictures of him walking straight into the oval wearing his golf shoes.

So that sort of checked out. Means nothing, other than… if you know the most important moment of your Presidency is coming up do you go golfing?

I actually thought it was weird on Sunday that he would go golfing if they were all tense about the raid. It is a big deal… So maybe this just plays into that thought.

petunia on May 4, 2011 at 7:10 PM

After all the bias, shilling, lies, and machinations by the msm’s, nothing they say or do can be trusted. Even with their polls. C’mon now. Just because they say they interview dems, republicans and independents doesn’t mean they do, or are.

For all we know, they’re viewing other polls, and just going by their results. Who knows if the others are honest or not. My bet is on they’re not!

capejasmine on May 4, 2011 at 7:13 PM

Schadenfreude on May 4, 2011 at 6:57 PM

Agreed. A month at most.

Moreover, it’s occurring to me that this will ultimately go bad for him, worse even than if he’d done nothing. It’s not merely his dispositional unsuitability as an executive and his constitutional incapacity not to screw up. Those qualities can’t help but re-emerge from the media-manufactured glow now around him. This was an anomaly: a precise military operation years in the planning (abstractly, anyway) and involving the most notoriously evil figure in the world. There are no more bin Ladens. As such, Obama will be compelled to overplay his hand. But we know that people tire quickly of the same old news. Two weeks from now? A month from now? Gas nearing $6. Food prices still creeping up. Libya grinding on inconclusively. A long hot summer of static GDP and unemployment. The killing of Bin laden will become a curdled memory — indeed, even a kind of reminder of how rare and phenomenal success is in this administration. Why is that? It must be because it wasn’t Obama’s success at all — it was the military’s. This will penetrate public consciousness. Then what?

The answer seems obvious — bomb Iran.

The super-rich irony of a “brilliant”, bad-faith Leftist boob for President is this: only the military will be able to save his as*. And he’ll soon know it, if he doesn’t already. He’s got nothing else.

rrpjr on May 4, 2011 at 7:16 PM

16 hours.

Once that goes viral, the temporary bounce will become a permanent dip.

Rebar on May 4, 2011 at 7:16 PM

Let the man have his bounce… if you don’t give him proper credit people won’t listen to proper critiques…

BTW, I think Weigel on twitter said Obama had his lowest rating on the economy he’s ever had in that NYTimes poll…

ninjapirate on May 4, 2011 at 5:41 PM

Qhy? He’s still the left-wing jerk he was on Saturday.

So he gave the okay to off Bin Laden. What president wouldn’t have?

Dreadnought on May 4, 2011 at 7:55 PM

Let the man have his bounce… if you don’t give him proper credit people won’t listen to proper critiques…

BTW, I think Weigel on twitter said Obama had his lowest rating on the economy he’s ever had in that NYTimes poll…

ninjapirate on May 4, 2011 at 5:41 PM

Why? He’s still the left-wing jerk he was on Saturday.

So he gave the okay to off Bin Laden. What president wouldn’t have?

Dreadnought on May 4, 2011 at 7:55 PM

(Corrected my typo. Wish this board had spell-check or an edit function)

Dreadnought on May 4, 2011 at 7:57 PM

So he gave the okay to off Bin Laden. What president wouldn’t have?

Dreadnought on May 4, 2011 at 7:55 PM

This is the key thing. All those going this call “brave” are by implication saying that some former or future president would not have given this go ahead. I’d like these people to name me one who would have said: “hey we can’t do this.”

Sharr on May 4, 2011 at 8:03 PM

16 hours.

Once that goes viral, the temporary bounce will become a permanent dip.

Rebar on May 4, 2011 at 7:16 PM

Yes, and it’s also becoming obvious that Bin Laden’s demise was the result of a long process that began 10 years ago, and was due to meticulous planning by the military, both things that are anathema to Obama and his supporters.

Though if you listen to the Larry O’Donnell’s of the world you would think that Obama was on the ground in Pakistan sniffing out leads and setting up fireteams for overwatch duty during the raid. I suspect that view will not pass muster with the public over the long run.

Dreadnought on May 4, 2011 at 8:03 PM

This is the key thing. All those going this call “brave” are by implication saying that some former or future president would not have given this go ahead. I’d like these people to name me one who would have said: “hey we can’t do this.”

Sharr on May 4, 2011 at 8:03 PM

Yes, even if Michael Moore or Fred Phelps were president they would have ordered his death. Even if by some chance they were personally opposed, political expediency alone would have dictated it.

What next, “Obama kisses baby-gets five point bounce in latest polls”?

Dreadnought on May 4, 2011 at 8:07 PM

The source only posts every few months or so. All of them have been spot on. This last one has so many intricate details that it is hard to ignore or to dismiss. As they say, a picture speaks a thousand words.

And if you check out Weasel Zippers, he had a post from AP that actually fawned over the fact that Obama wore his golf shoes into the Oval Office. That lends further credence to the fact that he was literally yanked off the golf course and forced to make a decision. And Valerie Jarrett has been AWOL ever since.

If you want to know who’s FUBARing the country it is likely Valerie Jarrett. She needs to be brought in to testify before Congress as to her role, her influence and what it is that she has on Obama that is making it her puppet.

The post is going viral, make no mistake. Gates is pissed, Panetta is pissed, Hillary is pissed and Patreus is pissed.

Gives us a second look at the “shake up” by moving Panetta to Def Sec and Patreus to head the CIA. WTF

Key West Reader on May 4, 2011 at 6:59 PM

I went to Ulsterman… first time in a long time.

I read the report from April 28. And if you read that as that Valerie Jarrit was stopping Obama from killing bin Laden and the others are keeping her in the dark… like the “insider” says. Well, the guy is a really good story teller… and he made all that up before it happened, or he knows what he is talking about.

And Obama is wearing his golf stuff. And in the picture it is like he was the last guy in the room. Everyone else has stuff in front of them and they have been there for a while.

Obama gets a corner spot? And has no papers or anything?

Obama wasn’t in charge of that meeting.

There could be other explanations but, wow.

Moving Pannetta to Defense, just before this is going down… It’s like somebody forced Pannetta’s hand. And boom, bin Laden is dead, before Pannetta doesn’t have the power to do it anymore.

Ulterman is very good at spinning a conspiracy theory.

Or he has a real source.

petunia on May 4, 2011 at 8:49 PM

Have they repolled today after the 50th version of events that were released surrounding OBL’s demise?

Kissmygrits on May 4, 2011 at 9:09 PM

Dead black cat bounce.

Jack Bauer on May 5, 2011 at 4:26 AM