And the award for the most ridiculous poll sampling goes to …

posted at 9:30 am on May 11, 2011 by Ed Morrissey

Move over, CBS.  Hang up the kid-leather gloves, WaPo/ABC.  There’s a new sample-skewing sheriff in town, and it’s the Associated Press.  In a new definition of “outlier,” the AP reported that its latest poll from GfK Roper shows Barack Obama with a 60% approval rating in a survey of 1001 adults, with even his approval on the economy shooting past the 50% mark:

President Barack Obama’s approval rating has hit its highest point in two years — 60 percent — and more than half of Americans now say he deserves to be re-elected, according to an Associated Press-GfK poll taken after U.S. forces killed al-Qaida leader Osama bin Laden.

In worrisome signs for Republicans, the president’s standing improved not just on foreign policy but also on the economy, and independent Americans — a key voting bloc in the November 2012 presidential election — caused the overall uptick in support by sliding back to Obama after fleeing for much of the past two years.

Comfortable majorities of the public now call Obama a strong leader who will keep America safe. Nearly three-fourths — 73 percent — also now say they are confident that Obama can effectively handle terrorist threats. And he improved his standing on Afghanistan, Iraq and the United States’ relationships with other countries.

Oddly — or perhaps not — the AP report doesn’t include a link back to the survey’s raw data.  In order to find it, one has to go to GfK’s site for its AP polls.  The partisan breakdown in the sample is found about halfway through the PDF, and it explains a great deal about how Obama managed to get such a high boost in this poll while others showed shallow bumps that had already started to subside.

The Dem/Rep/Ind breakdown in this poll is 46/29/4, as AP assigned most of the leaners to the parties.  That is a 17-point gap, more than twice what was seen in the 2008 actual popular vote that elected Obama.  It only gets worse when independents are assigned properly.  When taking out the leaners, the split becomes — I’m not kidding — 35/18/27.  Oh, and another 20% “don’t know.”  That’s significantly worse than the March poll, in which the proper D/R/I was 29/20/34, and far beyond their post-midterm sample of 31/28/26.  It’s pretty easy to get Obama to 60% when Republicans are undersampled by almost half.

Frankly, this sample is so bad that no real insights can be gleaned from it.  I think it’s time to break out the Billy Madison verdict:


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GEORGE STEPHANOPOULOS: Now, to politics. And a new poll out just this morning shows President Obama with his highest approval rating in two years. 60 percent Of Americans, according to the AP, now think the President is doing a good job. And for the first time in that poll, a majority of Americans, 53 percent, say he deserves re-election.

In a follow-up segment, Stephanopoulos reiterated, “And the White House did get that good news this morning, that 60 percent approval rating for the President in that latest poll.”

http://www.newsbusters.org/blogs/scott-whitlock/2011/05/11/george-stephanopoulos-cherry-picks-high-obama-polling-skips-lower-nu#ixzz1M47Es6Ff

Del Dolemonte on May 11, 2011 at 1:10 PM

Isn’t there something that can be done about this – I mean, legally? Outright lying and presenting it as fact. . . I mean, WTF?!?

RedNewEnglander on May 11, 2011 at 1:33 PM

Isn’t there something that can be done about this – I mean, legally? Outright lying and presenting it as fact. . . I mean, WTF?!?

RedNewEnglander on May 11, 2011 at 1:33 PM

They aren’t selling anything to the public so they have freedom of speech. However, going forward, they are thoroughly discredited.

Sharke on May 11, 2011 at 1:41 PM

If the so-called independents and the so-called republicans roll over, and let these impertinent liars trample all over them, they and their progeny deserve more punishment than the already absolutely moronic left.

Schadenfreude on May 11, 2011 at 1:43 PM

Media, suffocate from what you eat, you Obama-asscrawlers!

Schadenfreude on May 11, 2011 at 1:46 PM

(with thick Russian accent) But those who oppose the Communist, I mean, Democrat Party are either insane or non-persons.

WannabeAnglican on May 11, 2011 at 1:50 PM

I have noticed that the GfK polls are always about 7 points under everyone else. Gallup has Obama at 52 today and I think Rasmussen has him at 48.

Terrye on May 11, 2011 at 1:56 PM

Making themselves more irrelevent everyday. They might as well take a gun and shoot themselves in the foot.

JAM on May 11, 2011 at 9:44 AM

They need to move the gun up about 6 feet.

jistincase on May 11, 2011 at 2:23 PM

Fine, let them believe these kinds of polls. Because this type of poll will only be a detriment to Obama’s reelection efforts, not helpful at all.

ButterflyDragon on May 11, 2011 at 2:53 PM

Unless the Democrats plan on stepping up their voter fraud on a similar scale, all of the skewed poll results won’t do a thing to help Obama get reelected. It will just be 2004 all over again, in which no Democrat could understand how John Kerry lost.

Roxeanne de Luca on May 11, 2011 at 3:00 PM

Isn’t this a method for setting someone up for a fall? I mean, if Obama actually buys into this sort of press, he’s going to get a sour surprise pretty soon…

Sharr on May 11, 2011 at 3:07 PM

Isn’t there something that can be done about this – I mean, legally? Outright lying and presenting it as fact. . . I mean, WTF?!?

RedNewEnglander on May 11, 2011 at 1:33 PM

They aren’t selling anything to the public so they have freedom of speech. However, going forward, they are thoroughly discredited.

Sharke on May 11, 2011 at 1:41 PM

Actually, they are selling something to the public, just not directly.

al-AP sells their stuff to the “news outlets”, but that also includes “news outlets” that people have to pay for, like newspapers, cable tv, and the internet.

Del Dolemonte on May 11, 2011 at 3:11 PM

Reality check

Schadenfreude on May 11, 2011 at 3:21 PM

“It will take more than one term to achieve objectives” — Obama

Aka, you will be scroomed, 360 degrees, royally.

Schadenfreude on May 11, 2011 at 3:24 PM

Masterbatory!!!

CynicalOptimist on May 11, 2011 at 3:30 PM

Now is a good time to talk publicly about opening the media to lawsuits when they deliberately deceive like this. The suits (courts) themselves will determine that) They have first amendment protection for one thing only, to provide information to the voting populace. Deliberate deception is the exact oppposite and works against democracy. Discuss it at tevery interview GOP, and let the populous learn a bit of what’s going on. Ask Obama point blank (Romney? Bueller?) whether or not he supports this bias in his favor as a good thing for democracy?

Don L on May 11, 2011 at 3:48 PM

I don’t know why the Republicans don’t do the same, than when called out they can just point to this poll and say they used the same sampling techniques as AP.

right2bright on May 11, 2011 at 3:55 PM

C’mon, this was a totally random sample of the people they ran into in New York and Los Angeles.

hawksruleva on May 11, 2011 at 4:10 PM

This 60% approval rating made the ABC News radio blurb this morning. The lady sounded very chipper about this-as she seems to with all pro-Obama news.

Dr. ZhivBlago on May 11, 2011 at 4:47 PM

C’mon, this was a totally random sample of the people they ran into in New York Harlem and Los Angeles San Francisco.

hawksruleva on May 11, 2011 at 4:10 PM

FIFY

Pattosensei on May 11, 2011 at 4:53 PM

More 0bamaGanda. Color me unimpressed. ;o)

DannoJyd on May 11, 2011 at 5:32 PM

AP = All Propaganda

landlines on May 11, 2011 at 5:47 PM

Just in: In a poll conducted by BruceB, barry’s approval rate reached a -100% or 0 in all area’s. polling data follows 0/1/0 So there you have it .barry’s numbers are in the tank.

BruceB on May 11, 2011 at 5:52 PM

We need a candidate who can stay on point about gas prices, inflation and one who can speak with clarity about the debt.

….and repeat it over and over again until it’s driven home.

rickyricardo on May 11, 2011 at 1:02 PM

Wow, clarity from RR here. A FIRST!! /wink

karenhasfreedom on May 11, 2011 at 6:26 PM

Claude Rains Moment….50,000 watt C-BS blowtorch WBZ in Boston is shamelessly flogging this “poll” this afternoon in drive time.

Of course, the folks in MA keep re-electing Thurston Howell to be their US Senator, so they will believe anything.

Del Dolemonte on May 11, 2011 at 6:29 PM

I hear Goebbels’, Stalin’s and Walter Duranty’s ghosts are truly embarrassed.

viking01 on May 11, 2011 at 7:06 PM

Everyone realizes that the point of these polls at this time in the election cycle is not to measure public opinion, but to shape it, right?

But even then, you would have to be dumb as dirt (or a typical Obama voter) to believe that his approval is that high. AP pretty much jumps the shark with this one. It was probably more intended to shore up the base’s morale rather than to move somebody to Obama’s camp because of this newfound popularity.

AZfederalist on May 11, 2011 at 10:41 PM

Wow, AP…there goes your last shred of decency. If you’ll go to these lengths for such a small man, what else have you fudged in your reporting?
I held on to you for a while, because I’m old and set in my ways. AP used to be a source you paid attention to, but, I suppose, that was then and this is now. Now sucks.

jakev on May 12, 2011 at 7:30 AM

We need a candidate who can stay on point about gas prices, inflation and one who can speak with clarity about the debt.

rickyricardo on May 11, 2011 at 1:02 PM

But one maintains the mindset that “interviews” with the press are actually debates with the an opponent, would be nice too. Challenge their stupid, lop-sided assumptions.

If you’re not a birther and they ask you to condemn conservative birthers so that they can associate conservatism with its margin, note that there are Dem truthers, and ask the interviewer when was the last time they derailed a conversation by a Dem to answer about truthers. Know you are in a debate, and win the debate!

Axeman on May 12, 2011 at 9:23 AM

Fine, let them believe these kinds of polls. Because this type of poll will only be a detriment to Obama’s reelection efforts, not helpful at all.

ButterflyDragon on May 11, 2011 at 2:53 PM

Do you really believe this? Do you really think the AP doesn’t know how blatantly they’ve lied here?

Of course they know, they’ve been doing it for years, decades, and they keep doing it because it works. Maybe not every time, and maybe not as much as they hope, but it’s not like the AP invented propaganda. They’re merely carrying on a grand leftist tradition because just enough people WILL believe this tripe. Such people cannot be talked off that ledge, and trying is useless. This is APs audience.

runawayyyy on May 12, 2011 at 5:23 PM

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