WaPo/ABC poll adds seven points to Dem advantage in sample …

posted at 8:41 am on April 10, 2012 by Ed Morrissey

I love the Washington Post/ABC poll.  It’s a great object lesson in how to manufacture news.  Need a story that the incumbent President’s fortunes are looking up?  Well, just adjust the sample a bit and voila, he takes a seven point lead over his presumed rival in the fall election!  Besides, it gives me fodder for snarky material every few weeks.

Let’s get down to cases, shall we?

With the general-election campaign beginning to take shape, President Obama holds clear advantages over Mitt Romney on personal attributes and a number of key issues, but remains vulnerable to discontent with the pace of the economic recovery, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll.

Obama has double-digit leads over the likely Republican presidential nominee on who would do a better job of protecting the middle class, addressing women’s issues, handling international affairs and dealing with health care.

You know where else Obama got a double-digit lead?  In the polling sample.  In 2008, when Democrats surged to the polls after eight years of George W. Bush, CNN’s exit polls showed a seven-point advantage for Democrats, 39/32, which mirrored Obama’s seven-point victory in the popular vote.  In 2010′s midterms, CNN exit polls showed a 35/35/30 split.  By contrast, the previous WaPo/ABC poll in March had a D/R/I of 31/27/36, which undersampled both parties relative to independents but left Democrats with a 4-point advantage — perhaps an arguable model for 2012 turnout.  Today’s has a D/R/I of 34/23/34, adding seven points to that Democratic advantage and presenting a completely unrepresentative, absurd model for the 2012 turnout.

What happens when you switch from a D+4 to a D+11 in measuring Obama’s standing?  Suddenly, his job approval goes from 46% to 50% — actually, a rather weak gain given the sampling distortion in the poll.  Not coincidentally, the last time Obama hit 50% in this poll was in February, which also had a D+11 sample, after January’s D+7.  Adding seven points to the Democratic advantage impacted Obama’s performance in all areas, although perhaps not as much as the editors had hoped:

  • Economy — Up six points from 38% to 44%
  • International affairs — Down two points from January’s poll, 47% from 49%
  • Right/wrong direction – Up three points from January

Now, with a D+11 and Republicans only comprising 23% of the respondents in this poll, one should be seeing huge leads for Obama in the head-to-head matchups.  Instead, Obama lead Romney by only eight among general-population adults, 51/43, barely getting into majority territory, and Santorum by ten, 51/41.  Among registered voters, Obama leads Romney by seven, 51/44 — in both cases, smaller than the artificial sample advantage of the poll.  In fact, adding seven more points to the Democratic advantage only resulted in Obama’s support growing by five points since March, and Romney’s dropped only four in that period.  Once again, the numbers are almost exactly like February’s poll, with its matching D+11 sample.

But hey — the Post got to write its headline, right?

Update: Twitchy captures a bizarre exchange between Stephen “VodkaPundit” Green, me, and a staffer at Think Progress, who jumped to the conclusion that we were raaaaaaaaaaaacists for joking about the WaPo/ABC poll.  You really have to read it for yourself, although Twitchy misses my tweet in reaction to Annie-Rose Strasser’s complaint about my “mean” response: “@ARStrasser @VodkaPundit I’m sorry for not being more gracious when you accused me of being a racist.”


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And yes, it’s great to have Ed back! We need these ridiculous polls closely examined…not promoted as if they are legitimate.

cicerone on April 10, 2012 at 10:24 AM

cicerone on April 10, 2012 at 10:21 AM

Why don’t you worry about Gov. Romney making his case instead of labeling all he unconvinced as morons? All of the sudden Republican primary voters are big believers in the MSM? Damn, the luck!

Cindy Munford on April 10, 2012 at 10:25 AM

he unconvinced = the unconvinced.

Cindy Munford on April 10, 2012 at 10:25 AM

The tail is wagging the dog. In sports, athletes actually play games to get real results before we get to the Championship. In politics, we instead have a string of meaningless polls (really, would it make any difference if either Obama or Romney was up 12 at this point, no matter what the sample?).

The day after the election, some of us who carefully read political blogs will be saying “Yeah, well, X may have won the election, but we won the polls.” Then we’ll slap ourselves and realize how much time we have wasted following polls. (Not that I’m going to stop looking every day at Rasmussen in the morning, and Gallup in the afternoon.:))

bobs1196 on April 10, 2012 at 10:30 AM

Thank the good lord we can still get the sampling info…it might keep their troops from getting disspirited but, one would think it might make people who would vote for him lazy about making the effort.

rebekahhuang on April 10, 2012 at 10:31 AM

The cheating in the Polls (both Media and voting Polls), both manufactured and fraud ridden are intentionally manufactured to prove Obama legitimate in declaring himself winner in November. If by some quirk, all the cheating still doesn’t secure Obama’s victory, expect millions of lawsuits … remember Florida, Washington State, Minnesota, Wisconsin, etc, and etc.

aposematic on April 10, 2012 at 10:36 AM

Lies, damn lies and statistics.
Just goes to show you can prove anything you want with numbers.

RadioAngel on April 10, 2012 at 10:38 AM

More fools gold for the uninformed.

lynncgb on April 10, 2012 at 10:41 AM

She never participates in polls. She never takes the surveys or signs petitions.

GadsdenRattlers on April 10, 2012 at 10:17 AM

Nobody does. I don’t know where pollsters get their data but it certainly isn’t anywhere that real people live.

My dad got a poll call back during the Clinton years. His two choices were whether or not Clinton should be censured for his perjury. The pollster hung up when the response was “impeached.”

Happy Nomad on April 10, 2012 at 10:42 AM

Again, I have said this before, and will say this again, these polls are being manufactured to make it seem like Obama’s re-election is inevitable for several reasons:

1. Depress Republican fundraising, which will impact not only Romney, but down-ticket Republicans.
2. Increase excitement for down-ticket Democrats.
3. Convince Republicans that Romney has “no chance” so they continue the Republican primary.
4. Depress Republicans, so they do not come out and vote in November.
5. Create a narrative that Obama’s message is resonating and force Romney to engage in the campaign Obama wants, instead of a campaign about Obama and his record.

However, most polling places do not acknoledge this by showing their crosstabs. WaPo was brave enough to do that.

milcus on April 10, 2012 at 10:44 AM

It’s rather obvious that the MSM will be publishing manufactured “polls” until November.

GarandFan on April 10, 2012 at 10:46 AM

Well, it’s like this, if America is truly this stupid, then America deserves Obama.

JellyToast on April 10, 2012 at 10:48 AM

Polls showed Brown either narrowly ahead or narrowly behind. The polls weren’t wrong then and they aren’t wrong now showing Romney getting trounced.

And the anger and activism on the Right isn’t nearly as strong as it was during that MA race. Gas prices should have Obama’s approval at 40% or below, but he’s way, way above that in every poll. For whatever reason, people just love the guy personally and are going to cut him a ton of slack.

gumbyandpokey on April 10, 2012 at 10:18 AM

Um no. The globe had Marcia up by 20 points. There were as many people standing outside waiting to get a glimpse of Brown as Zero’s handlers could drag into Coakleys event OFF THE STREET.

Zero is only above that in every dishonest poll conducted by leftists, like the one that required a sample 51% libs to get his approval to 50%. I guess you missed that one.

The only folks that love Zero are the 0Z0mbies.

dogsoldier on April 10, 2012 at 10:48 AM

Wapo/ABC news and others intentionally conduct these Dem oversampled polls to slant the Real Clear politics polling average into favorable ratings for Obama. They have to steadily increase the Dem sample to get the desired result. Seriously, go look at the Real Clear Politics polling on Obama job approval, and look at which polls are driving obama’s supposed increase in favorability. Note how the WAPO/ABC poll conveniently coincides with an article reporting the economy might be sliding back into recession.

Just as in their television and print media coverage, the mainstream media is desperate to control and influence the narrative, to help Obama’s re election prospects.

Cavalry on April 10, 2012 at 10:49 AM

It’s rather obvious that the MSM will be publishing manufactured “polls” until November.

GarandFan on April 10, 2012 at 10:46 AM

Along with manufactured good economic news and unemployment numbers.

buckeyerich on April 10, 2012 at 10:52 AM

Clearly, Romney can’t win the White House

Santorum is the better candidate and would win.

Steveangell on April 10, 2012 at 10:53 AM

I was on another site which was toting this poll as “proof” of the war on women. So I posted this article over there, just for fun.

redmama on April 10, 2012 at 10:57 AM

Publishing distorted poll results may make Dems happy today, but it’s never a good idea to have your own people depend on false intelligence. The Dems now have various people in their organization using inaccurate information to plan their fall campaigns. All it will probably result in is a feeling of shock and awe when they do lose.

Fred 2 on April 10, 2012 at 10:59 AM

Clearly, Romney can’t win the White House

Santorum is the better candidate and would win.

Steveangell on April 10, 2012 at 10:53 AM

Thanks for the.concern!
/

M240H on April 10, 2012 at 11:02 AM

Steveangell on April 10, 2012 at 10:53 AM

Doesn’t seem likely.

Cindy Munford on April 10, 2012 at 11:05 AM

Yeah, WaPo got its headline; but Obama gets the meme.

Joe Scarborough will tout this poll as an indication of how unpopular the Republicans are and Mika will nod her head in assent. And, viewers will believe this poll has CREDIBILITY.

Because what they know is this: People will vote the way they think everyone else is voting. People want to vote for the winner. Liberal media outlets are propagandizing viewers to believe Obama is the popular choice; they know their viewers will follow along like the sheep they are.

It’s all they’ve got, but it is a powerful tool–so don’t mock it, thinking that people actually use critical intellectual skills to decide how to vote. Most people aren’t that intelligent.

My hope is that Romney kicks ass in PA and Santorum concedes, so that we can get down to business forming a new meme: Voters Want Obama Out.

mountainaires on April 10, 2012 at 11:06 AM

Carter was leading Reagan by 20 points at this time in 1980. Let me repeat that: Carter was leading Reagan by 20 points at this time in 1980. So, unless they can pull some voodoo magic with those samples to give Obama a 20% lead, it means nothing for November.

Dark Star on April 10, 2012 at 11:12 AM

Carter was leading Reagan by 20 points at this time in 1980. Let me repeat that: Carter was leading Reagan by 20 points at this time in 1980. So, unless they can pull some voodoo magic with those samples to give Obama a 20% lead, it means nothing for November.

Dark Star on April 10, 2012 at 11:12 AM

Romney is not Reagan please stop comparing. In the Charisma department alone Romney does not compare.

Reagan had grass root conservative movement sweeping through America. Romney doesn’t.

There are significant differences between the two. It irritates me when people make that comparison

social-justice on April 10, 2012 at 11:15 AM

the freakin’ racist progressives have successfully brain-washed 1/2 the country.

kirkill on April 10, 2012 at 11:26 AM

How many times did they call Cousin Pookie?

FruitedPlain on April 10, 2012 at 11:27 AM

There are significant differences between the two. It irritates me when people make that comparison

social-justice on April 10, 2012 at 11:15 AM

Okay, I have a better one for ya. Romney is not Obama.

dogsoldier on April 10, 2012 at 11:30 AM

Imo, the polls are important to encourage the troops to donate $$$. And the long lead time on all the various tail wagging the dog efforts going on are probably greatly to do with fundraising too. Never mind the human price being paid.

As readers here are probably aware, their fundraising efforts have proved arduous so far. Not to say that may not change, but this campaign army has a lot of mouths to feed all spring and summer and fall long. A lot of mouth to feed while still keeping up a front of being inevitable, and strong….

perries on April 10, 2012 at 11:30 AM

Another poll just out showing Obama leading Romney by 8, published by the conservative Investor Business Daily:

http://www.tipponline.com/presidency/news/presidency/obama-leads-romney-46-to-38

Attack the polls all you want. Romney’s favorability ratings are plummeting and he is hemmoraghing voters.

Our only hope at this point is to get to a brokered convention, dump Romney, and chose a conservative as our nominee.

Romney is unelectable.

Norwegian on April 10, 2012 at 11:33 AM

Clearly, Romney can’t win the White House

Santorum is the better candidate and would win.

Steveangell on April 10, 2012 at 10:53 AM

Santorum is fading each day. Romney will be rising as he is made the nominee.

ObamatheMessiah on April 10, 2012 at 11:35 AM

Comparing this election to Reagan/Carter is just ridiculous. Consumer Confidence was far worse in 80, the public was much angrier, and the GOP nominee was the best campaigner and candidate you could ask for. That is the opposite of 2012.

gumbyandpokey on April 10, 2012 at 11:36 AM

So, to be clear, the primary marks of this distorted polling data are not the opposition (though bonus if that works) but the democrat voting flocks themselves, who are hopefully going to turn out for a shearing.

perries on April 10, 2012 at 11:37 AM

GOP . . . hire a few statisticians to evaluate and debunk these unreliable and invalid polls, then report out to the public. Don’t let them get away with this two-bit, left wing propaganda.

rplat on April 10, 2012 at 11:38 AM

Clearly, Romney can’t win the White House

Santorum is the better candidate and would win.

Steveangell on April 10, 2012 at 10:53 AM

“Clearly”? Please define that clarity.

rplat on April 10, 2012 at 11:40 AM

This idea of way over sampling Dems.gives me a great thought.My son is a high school track coach so just maybe if he changes the mile run for his and his only players from 5280 ft.to lets say 4280 ft.in their next meet while making the other players run the 5280 ft. mile.I just bet his team will win that event while setting all kinds of world records.

logman1 on April 10, 2012 at 11:45 AM

Norwegian on April 10, 2012 at 11:33 AM

The Poll was conducted from March 30 (Friday) to April 5 (Thursday) using traditional telephone methodology, Sample Size: 816 Registered Voters nationwide, Margin of error – plus/minus 3.3 percentage points

It’s all fun with numbers at this point. At the end of the day, Obama is going to have to defend this economy, gas prices, solyndra, fast and furious, et al. We haven’t had one general election debate yet.

Don’t believe the media hype, even from TIPP, Christian Science Monitor and IBD.

gaius on April 10, 2012 at 11:46 AM

Consumer Confidence was far worse in 80, the public was much angrier

In what freaking fairyland are you living to make the assertion that consumer confidence is so much better now and that the public is not angry? I speak to realtors quite frequently in my line of work, and they say that nobody wants to make a move right now because of the paralyzing fear that exists should this Marxist dictator wannabe get reelected.
And the only reason you could possibly believe the public isn’t angry–and extremely disspirited–is because you are basing it on whatever bubble of liberals-only to whom you might be communicating.
Trust me. In the real world, there is NO consumer confidence right now, and there is plenty of anger and despair.
Among people who have been lucky enough to remain employed during this reign of economic terror, and who do not work in the public sector, I’d venture a guess that very few have received anything in the way of a cost-of-living increase in the last three years–even though the price of gas and food has skyrocketed in that time.

Go back to Axelrod and get yourself more convincing talking points, okay?

Right Mover on April 10, 2012 at 11:47 AM

“It’s all fun with numbers at this point. At the end of the day, Obama is going to have to defend this economy, gas prices, solyndra, fast and furious, et al. We haven’t had one general election debate yet.

Don’t believe the media hype, even from TIPP, Christian Science Monitor and IBD.”

TIPP was pretty good in 2012 and was watched closely by Conservatives.

And I hate to tell you, but the general public doesn’t care one bit about Fast and Furious or Solyndra.

The rise of gas prices has done nothing negative to Obama’s approval or head-to-head matchups vs Romney. Whether we like it or not, the guy is golden and nothing negatively affects him. Bush’s approval would have been 30% with this economy and gas prices this high.

gumbyandpokey on April 10, 2012 at 11:52 AM

Comparing this election to Reagan/Carter is just ridiculous. Consumer Confidence was far worse in 80, the public was much angrier, and the GOP nominee was the best campaigner and candidate you could ask for. That is the opposite of 2012.

gumbyandpokey on April 10, 2012 at 11:36 AM

Agree.

Romney is like John Anderson. A left-leaning, uncharismatic “Republican” from a blue state.

Norwegian on April 10, 2012 at 11:53 AM

Meant to say TIPP was good in 2008 and watched by Conservatives.

gumbyandpokey on April 10, 2012 at 11:53 AM

But hey — the Post got to write its headline, right?

Come on, Ed.
You know they write the headline first, then do a ‘poll’ to support it.

Dexter_Alarius on April 10, 2012 at 12:01 PM

social-justice on April 10, 2012 at 11:15 AM

Calm down. He wasn’t saying Romney is just like Reagan. He was pointing out the uselessness of poll numbers this early.

Ampersand on April 10, 2012 at 12:03 PM

“He was pointing out the uselessness of poll numbers this early.”

People said the poll numbers were useless in 96, too. When you have a personally popular President, which Obama certainly is (and Clinton was) vs a very unpopular/unlikable opponent, which Romney certainly is, you end up with a landslide.

Polls are usually pretty accurate. Clinton had a huge lead and won in a rout in 96. Bush and Gore were deadlocked, and you know the rest. Bush had a narrow lead over Kerry and won narrowly. Obama had a solid lead on McCain and won easily. The same will be true this year. Blow off the polls at your own peril and disappointment.

gumbyandpokey on April 10, 2012 at 12:08 PM

The Twitchy Feed from Twitter is hilarious! They are so cute when they slip up and reveal their race-baiting tactics.

Best Other Twitter Response was “0 to Racist Republicans in .047 seconds flat.”

conservatives may be late getting to the social media game, but we sure are starting to do it right.

GadsdenRattlers on April 10, 2012 at 12:18 PM

Update: Twitchy captures a bizarre exchange between Stephen “VodkaPundit” Green, me, and a staffer at Think Progress, who jumped to the conclusion that we were raaaaaaaaaaaacists for joking about the WaPo/ABC poll. You really have to read it for yourself, although Twitchy misses my tweet in reaction to Annie-Rose Strasser’s complaint about my “mean” response: “@ARStrasser @VodkaPundit I’m sorry for not being more gracious when you accused me of being a racist.”

Sheesh, sometimes I worry about my people….

libfreeordie on April 10, 2012 at 12:19 PM

Have you ever seen a media-sponsored poll that didn’t over-sample Democrats? The media decides what result it wants and the pollster builds a sampling that will produce the desired result. For the past 15+ years media-sponsored polls heve been used to drive (rather than reflect) public opinion.

There is no more dishonest group of people in the world than the U.S. media (with the possible exception of U.S. pollsters).

bw222 on April 10, 2012 at 12:34 PM

So if they have an 11 point skew in the sample in April, what will it be come October? Will they even be sampling Republicans by then?

I never underestimate the stupidity of the Left but this kind of shenanigans has to be on purpose.

jnelchef on April 10, 2012 at 12:36 PM

Carter was leading Reagan by 20 points at this time in 1980. Let me repeat that: Carter was leading Reagan by 20 points at this time in 1980. So, unless they can pull some voodoo magic with those samples to give Obama a 20% lead, it means nothing for November.

Dark Star on April 10, 2012 at 11:12 AM

THIS

Lord of the Wings on April 10, 2012 at 12:51 PM

Comparing this election to Reagan/Carter is just ridiculous. Consumer Confidence was far worse in 80, the public was much angrier, and the GOP nominee was the best campaigner and candidate you could ask for. That is the opposite of 2012.

gumbyandpokey on April 10, 2012 at 11:36 AM

Bull. It is a perfectly fair assessment of how an incumbent POTUS should stack up against a challenger in polling at this point in a GE. No one is saying Romney is the same as Reagan, except you, but that is because you obviously don’t understand how analogies work. Here’s a hint: analogous doesn’t mean equal to or the same as.

Furthermore, since you want to go there, the public is just as angry as it was in 1980 despite what the media is saying about them being “disengaged” — the difference is that no one is allowed to talk about it because they are afraid of being called racists. Hence, Obama only leading by 7 points — that right there should be a clue that your assertion that the public is so much more satisfied & consumer confidence is so much higher now than in 1980. But for the point you insist on making (that had nothing to do with my initial analogy) I’ll give you this analogy (see if you can follow along): if you want to talk about the “anger” of the public, a good analogy given the wariness people feel these days criticizing Obama, is 1972 when the Dems were all hyped up thinking they controlled the narrative & were “sure to win the GE” until the silent majority swooped in and actually voted on election day. (Again, this may be a little above your pay grade).

Finally, you must not remember 1980 because Reagan was not seen as “the best candidate you could ask for” at this point in 1980 & was, in fact, being put through the wringer at this point in the GOP primary, with even GHWB saying he was practicing “voodoo economics” — Reagan didn’t become who you think he was until after he was elected. This fanboy, revisionist history of Reagan is not only untrue, it is ridiculous.

Dark Star on April 10, 2012 at 12:56 PM

gumbyandpokey on April 10, 2012 at 12:08 PM

Thanks for that. It drives me nuts when people knee jerk dismiss polling data with “left wing l-msm BS”, or “coroprate controled right wing BS” out of hand because they dont like the result. Dems and Reps both do it. It could be that the R/I/D breakdown in the polls is accurate because the country is moving in the democrats direction. However, arguing against that is….

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/mood_of_america/generic_congressional_ballot

http://www.rasmussenreports.com/public_content/politics/mood_of_america/partisan_trends

The latter link claims…

“During March, 36.4% of Americans considered themselves Republicans while 33.4% were Democrats. For the GOP, that’s a gain of 0.4% from a month ago. Democrats gained a full percentage point from February.

Keep in mind this is based on a massive sample of ADULTS (not even likly voters…

“Rasmussen Reports tracks this information based on telephone interviews with approximately 15,000 adults per month and has been doing so since November 2002. The margin of error for the full sample is less than one percentage point, with a 95% level of confidence.”

sheikh of thornton on April 10, 2012 at 12:56 PM

Sheesh, sometimes I worry about my people….

libfreeordie on April 10, 2012 at 12:19 PM

I’d have never guessed that intellectually challenged people worry about anything really…

jimver on April 10, 2012 at 1:14 PM

Thanks for that. It drives me nuts when people knee jerk dismiss polling data with “left wing l-msm BS”, or “coroprate controled right wing BS” out of hand because they dont like the result. Dems and Reps both do it. It could be that the R/I/D breakdown in the polls is accurate because the country is moving in the democrats direction. However, arguing against that is….

It mat shock you to learn that our objections are not knee jerk reactions. Some of us have studied this at length. In my case, starting in college many years ago.

The country is not moving in the socialist direction, as much as the socialists would like to say it is.

dogsoldier on April 10, 2012 at 1:21 PM

Heh, this got linked over at Fark.

The kos kids there react just like you know they would.

Moesart on April 10, 2012 at 1:26 PM

Sorry Ed. Pollsters do not weigh by party ID. Your complaint is as bogus as when Democrats were making it about supposedly Republican-skewed polls in 2004.

If you accept the validity of polling a random selection of the population on a series of questions, then you have to accept the validity of their answers to all those questions — including party ID.

redfate on April 10, 2012 at 1:52 PM

For all of you who think this poll isn’t a joke, check out Rasmussen’s poll today of likely voters. Obama can’t get above 45 percent. He is toast in November if he doesn’t get to at least 50 percent. This wapo poll is an admission the Obama is in deep trouble.

Ta111 on April 10, 2012 at 2:00 PM

I love the Washington Post/ABC poll. It’s a great object lesson in how to manufacture news.

..and I love the fact that you’re back, Ed! I missed your poll posts and your poignantly piquant prose like the above: an juicy appetizer just begging us to read your surgeon-like dissection of these pieces of MSM propaganda.

But I am beggin’ ya, Ed, please, please, PLEASE! Take the dewy-eyed ingenue under your patronly wing and teach her some of your black art. God bless Tina. But just throwing up poll numbers without analysis just ain’t worthy reportage.

We come here to HG for more than just news. If I wanted news, I’d be content with the bravo sierra that the alphabet folks throw up every evening.

The War Planner on April 10, 2012 at 2:32 PM

..If I wanted news, I’d be content with the bravo sierra that the alphabet folks throw up every evening.

The War Planner on April 10, 2012 at 2:32 PM

..no, I really wouldn’t.

The War Planner on April 10, 2012 at 2:32 PM

Sorry Ed. Pollsters do not weigh by party ID. Your complaint is as bogus as when Democrats were making it about supposedly Republican-skewed polls in 2004.

If you accept the validity of polling a random selection of the population on a series of questions, then you have to accept the validity of their answers to all those questions — including party ID.

JohnZogby on April 10, 2012 at 1:52 PM

Fixed.

Some credible, multi-sourced cites would help your claim, John.

Del Dolemonte on April 10, 2012 at 5:05 PM

JohnZogby on April 10, 2012 at 1:52 PM

Fixed.

Some credible, multi-sourced cites would help your claim, John.

Del Dolemonte on April 10, 2012 at 5:05 PM

Your “proof” in your original post comes from a blogger for HuffPo. That’s like expecting us to read and believe a claim by the WaPo itself that they don’t weight polls by Party ID.

Del Dolemonte on April 10, 2012 at 5:09 PM

Sorry Ed. Pollsters do not weigh by party ID. Your complaint is as bogus as when Democrats were making it about supposedly Republican-skewed polls in 2004.

If you accept the validity of polling a random selection of the population on a series of questions, then you have to accept the validity of their answers to all those questions — including party ID

I dont think Ed is wrong in pointing out the D/R/I breakdown because, if it is off, it indicates that the answer to “who will you vote for?” is also off. It does seem off because, according to Rasmussen….

“During March, 36.4% of Americans considered themselves Republicans while 33.4% were Democrats. For the GOP, that’s a gain of 0.4% from a month ago. Democrats gained a full percentage point from February.

Keep in mind this is based on a massive sample of ADULTS (not even likly voters…

“Rasmussen Reports tracks this information based on telephone interviews with approximately 15,000 adults per month and has been doing so since November 2002. The margin of error for the full sample is less than one percentage point, with a 95% level of confidence.”

So if a massive poll of ADULTS, (who are less republican than Likly Voters indicates that the D/R/I breakdown is 33/36/31 then the D/R/I of 34/23/34 that WaPo/ABC claims is off the mark suggesting that their poll is a bogus outlier. It suggests that for the WaPO?ABC poll to be accurate we have to add about 13% to Romneys score in the ABC poll putting Romney up by 5 over Obama

sheikh of thornton on April 10, 2012 at 5:44 PM

Don’t know which is worse in the shilling for Obama department, the Post or the Times. Unfortunately, as of late, both have been one-upping each other … http://bit.ly/qVdDUt

ombdz on April 10, 2012 at 6:11 PM

Sorry Ed. Pollsters do not weigh by party ID. Your complaint is as bogus as when Democrats were making it about supposedly Republican-skewed polls in 2004.

If you accept the validity of polling a random selection of the population on a series of questions, then you have to accept the validity of their answers to all those questions — including party ID

I think Ed’s point was, if you’re trying to use these poll results to predict who will win in November, you have to adjust for the differences in the sample compared to the voters. The sample is skewed so far D that it doesn’t accurately predict those results.

For instance, at the risk of being called racist, if you by chance sampled only African American Democrats, Obama would poll well, but it wouldn’t be very predictive of how well he would do in the general election.

talkingpoints on April 10, 2012 at 7:51 PM

Clearly they are full blown fabricators, not at all journalists.

VorDaj on April 10, 2012 at 8:04 PM

I think Ed’s point was, if you’re trying to use these poll results to predict who will win in November, you have to adjust for the differences in the sample compared to the voters.

Ed’s point was that the Washington Post was trying to “manufacture news” by intentionally oversampling Democrats. If he has any evidence of that, he ought to tell us, because that would be a blockbuster scandal.

In the real world, the poll results would have been exactly the same if the pollster had never asked respondents for their party ID. The poll may wll be a statistical outlier — that happens naturally from time to time — but the reason it sampled mostly Democrats is because most of 1,000-some randomly selected individuals said they were Democrats.

Ed thinks the pollster should reweigh the results according party ID as expressed in the 2010 exit ballots, which is totally arbitrary. Why not reweigh according to part affiliation in 1992? Or 1910?

Thought experiment: Obama conducts an internal poll showing 45% of Americans approve of Obama’s job performance. He declared the poll to be biased because that’s a -30% drop from January 2009, when 75% approved of his job performance. Accordingly, the poll is reweighed so that 75% of respondents approve of Obama’s job performance.

Ed seems to want exactly the same thing. There’s no difference between asking someone which party they affiliate with and asking their opinion on any other matter. It’s a random sample.

redfate on April 10, 2012 at 8:28 PM

Your “proof” in your original post comes from a blogger for HuffPo. That’s like expecting us to read and believe a claim by the WaPo itself that they don’t weight polls by Party ID.

Del Dolemonte on April 10, 2012 at 5:09 PM

He’s the founder of Pollster.com. HuffPo didn’t exist when he wrote those articles.

redfate on April 10, 2012 at 8:36 PM

Same sort of poll jiggering took place ~10days ago in the Gallup nonsense about women leaning towards Obama over Romney, the sampling was weighted 2 to 1 in favor of Libs and they still barely got Obama-favoring results.
The poll got cited even on some FoxNews segments, but they didn’t even mention the skewed sample.

rayra on April 11, 2012 at 2:44 AM

Twitchy captures a bizarre exchange between Stephen “VodkaPundit” Green, me, and a staffer at Think Progress, who jumped to the conclusion that we were raaaaaaaaaaaacists for joking about the WaPo/ABC poll. You really have to read it for yourself, although Twitchy misses my tweet in reaction to Annie-Rose Strasser’s complaint about my “mean” response: “@ARStrasser @VodkaPundit I’m sorry for not being more gracious when you accused me of being a racist.”

Oh that’s funny. Better report yourself to attackwatch!

Jurisprudence on April 11, 2012 at 1:53 PM

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