Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Flooding The Zone

It's early in the cycle. Few pollsters are doing polls. So one pollster, PPP, seems to be doing 70% of the state polls. PPP is a Democratic pollster. Without any independent pollster their numbers should be taken with that in consideration. Yet Politico, Swing State Project,, Talking Points Memo, and report the polls as fact. Even Republican sites like Hot Air, Fox News, and Washington Examiner accept the number without question.

No one poll should be taken as gospel, especially not when it's a partisan pollster. What makes it worse is that in at least half their polls, they have a higher percentage of Democrats than voted for them, even in 2006 and 2008 Democratic landslide elections. This is true in New Mexico, which has 55% Democrats compared to 44% in 2008, Colorado, Rhode Island, Virginia, and Ohio. PPP says that this can happen because they don't adjust for party. Since party is the best indicator of how a Republican or Democrat will vote, that would seem to be the first thing you adjust for. PPP did the same thing in 2008, only adjusting for party two months before the election when they switched to likely voter.

I don't mind a partisan pollster pushing their candidates. I do mind everyone on the Internet taking their numbers without even looking at the data.

No comments:

Post a Comment