Don't Buy into Corporate Polls

We all should remember how way off polls can be even the day before a primary. Take Michigan for example, which Bernie won:

The polls vary widely, even ridiculously so, this time around and simply don't have any grip on independent voters, now probably more than 42% of the electorate, who can vote in some primaries but not in others. And Bernie's appeal among independent voters is well established.

And Other Random Hit-and-Run Observations

Bernie Rises Above. . . : 2020 Presidential Black Power Rankings, Week 13 from THE ROOT October 11 (excerpted)

#1: Sen. Bernie Sanders

His daughter-in-law died, he had a heart attack and was back at work on Monday. That’s black AF. If there’s any community that knows what it’s like to go through an unspeakable tragedy and have to pick yourself back up and grind because you can’t afford to miss one day of work (or the campaign trail) it’s black folks, and for this week at least, Bernie is one of us. Sanders used his heart attack as a springboard to talk about his “Medicare for all” plan and was a living example of why it mattered.

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Wally's picture

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Lookout's picture

I hope someone conducts exit polls during the primaries cause I don't trust the vote either.

Have you seen this clip from a few months ago? (15.5 min)

That pretty much explains my lack of trust.

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@Lookout

didn't include anybody under 45...and didn't say anything about that?

If they do that--which is obvious--what other BS could they be pulling?

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14 users have voted.

Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

snoopydawg's picture

@Lookout

Gahh!! This is what drives me nuts about everyone saying it's Russia's fault that we have Trump. How is it that people don't know this?

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America is a pathetic nation; a fascist state fueled by the greed, malice, and stupidity of her own people.
- strife delivery

@Lookout Seems to me exit polling has been corrupted beyond repair, probably so that the, ahem, questionable results wouldn’t be so screamingly obvious.

Who can be trusted to run exit polls?

Of course, I always fall back to insisting that the only legitimate election is paper ballots hand counted in public. Which leads to my conclusion that we currently have bastard governments.

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Lookout's picture

@tle

from the vote in 2016. Those were the last exit polls conducted (super Tuesday). And the $hill won big although there were many Berniecrats and his rallies here were well attended. I suspect there was some ballot box stuffing.

Here's one group that conducts exit polls

The source for those sorts of detailed analyses of the electorate is Edison Research. The Somerville, New Jersey-based firm has conducted exit polls for the National Election Pool (a consortium of ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN, Fox and The Associated Press) since 2003 – originally in conjunction with Mitofsky International, and since 2006 on its own.

https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2016/11/02/just-how-does-the-gener...

By design, voting is private and anonymous, so the only way to find out who voted which way and why is to ask them. Nationwide exit polls have been around since 1972, when CBS conducted the first such survey. The other TV networks soon followed with their own exit polls, but rising expenses led them to pool their efforts beginning in 1989, when they formed Voter Research & Surveys (renamed Voter News Service, or VNS, in 1993 after AP joined; Fox came on board a few years later).

VNS conducted the exit poll and provided the results to the networks and AP throughout the 1990s. But after an error-strewn performance in the 2000 presidential election and a computer meltdown on election night 2002, VNS was dissolved and replaced by the National Election Pool, or NEP. The NEP members (CBS, NBC, ABC, CNN, Fox and AP) contracted with Edison Research (and, initially, Mitofsky International) to conduct the exit poll.

https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2018/11/01/exit-polls-election-sur...

These corporate polls may or may not be valid, but at least it is a way to compare what voters claim and the election results.

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“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

Wally's picture

@Lookout

What about something along the lines of a Government Accounting Office being established to do exit polls?

I know some will argue that it's like the fox guarding the hen house.

But if it was established in the right way, unlike Warren's Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB), so that it's at least less likely to be corrupted by government and private industry board appointments, that might be the way to go.

Of course, TPTB will oppose it but that's why it's so vital to get a foot in the door through a president who values democracy over corporate influence.

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Lookout's picture

@Wally

The Carter Center might be a trustworthy agency as well.

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3 users have voted.

“Until justice rolls down like water and righteousness like a mighty stream.”

the current polls are against you, pound on the past.

And if the vote is against you, pound on the exit polls.

And if both the polls and the vote are against you, pound on the BlackPower Rankings.

And if none of that works, pound on Harold Reid ...

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Wally's picture

@wokkamile

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@wokkamile

An electable bastard is still a bastard. An electable liar is still a liar.

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Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@wokkamile

is not analysis but propaganda, no matter who does it on behalf of whom.

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20 users have voted.

Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal electability? But re that, it does factor into many voters' assessments, whether a majority or a little less, whether a majority here like it or not. So not entirely irrelevant to our election discussions, and not at all a question of propaganda, but perhaps a part of the overall discussion you'd rather not hear.

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@wokkamile

to polling data. Polling data on candidates is, necessarily, about electability--since it's about how well voters (or likely voters) like the various candidates.

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9 users have voted.

Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal you mean, but are you trying to say I am not permitted to comment on polls b/c you deem that propaganda??? We've already had others here -- not just me -- commenting on polls today and on many previous days in this forum. Ok for them to comment, but not me? I really don't understand your logic.

I do give my views on polling data -- good, bad, indifferent. Didn't realize I needed your permission.

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@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal by definition necessarily measure electability. A person polled may "like" candidate A's personality or positions, but find him/her not that electable or the most electable (for me, Tulsi or Bernie might fit here).

To measure electability the pollsters must ask further specific questions beyond the entry question of who a person would vote for if the election were held today, including whether the pollee considers electability an important factor in deciding whom to vote for.

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Wally's picture

@wokkamile

. . . over others by not being properly structured and carried out. Or maybe I should say they are properly structured and carried out but for the benefit of certain interests.

And then the MSM spins and megaphones the results as they see fit and they're much beholden to their corporate masters.

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@Wally with all that. But that's a second level discussion on polling. I was addressing the issue of what generally polls do or purport to show.

The first half of the year, polls weren't much more than name recognition, and in Biden's case, that plus some superficial warm and fuzzies among one group b/c he was Obama's loyal VP.

And we cite polls, whether sponsored by a major MSM outlet or not, depending on whether our candidate is showing well. Most of us here understand this and accept it as part of the larger discussion.

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@wokkamile

propaganda. There is no data that suggests that national polls conducted this early are reasonably predictive. If people must talk polls four months out from Iowa, they should be limited to state polls only. If you want maximum significance, polls done in primary states.

That's assuming, of course, that polling is neutral and trustworthy. That's debatable. What's not debatable is the fact that poll data--good or bad--this far out, particularly national polls, is irrelevant to outcomes. Except in the sense that it influences some people to participate and discourages others.

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11 users have voted.

Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal may be talking past each other. I saw a state poll in this thread (or another) and responded to that.

My consistent position on national polls is 1) we do not hold a national primary and 2) they can show up and down trends for candidates, so in this sense are not entirely useless.

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Wally's picture

@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal

With this recent poll concerning Iowa, I think it's safe to say that at this point in time, about three months away from the caucuses on February 3, 2020, there are three candidates who are considerably in front of the pack and are polling pretty, pretty damn close to one another. Different MSM outlets and campaign staffs and supporters are going to spin the information in favor of their favored candidate. That's what they do.

Should private election polling be outlawed? I wouldn't have a problem with getting rid of it but right now it's something that we have to deal with, either rejecting it or making whatever we make of it. Sure, some of the analysis is surely toxic, but some analysis is at least worth looking at and critiquing or rejecting. I don't put too much trust in any kind of poll that is projecting results six months away without the early primaries and Super Tuesday having taken place.

I think we can all agree that the results of the Iowa caucuses will have a considerable impact on how folks vote in the other early primary states and Super Tuesday, March 20th, 2020.

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@Wally But Booker and Klobuchar are?

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Wally's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness

I'm pretty sure Tulsi will do significantly better than projected in Iowa. But *at this point in time*, I don't think she's going to come in anywhere close to the three front runners. Again, I'd be happy to see corporate polling go the way of the wind. And I'm looking forward to Tulsi blasting the MSM and the pollsters (often linked). For sure, they will try to stifle her. I see from another thread that they've gotten rid of opening statements. Yep, they are scared. I'm guessing they'll still have closing statements. Tricky way to stymy Tulsi from staging a walk-out, heh?

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@Wally threat to boycott was that it gave a heads up and enabled the MSM entity to adjust the format to further disadvantage her, as I see it. Her best opportunity to lay the wood into the MSM and DNC was at the outset, when most people are watching, and in her opening statement.

She will be lucky to get a question directed to her in the first 45 min on her boycott statement, or on anything. Most likely the MSM holding this event will want to bring up again her warm, close ties with brutal dictator Assad and her suspiciously weak, defeatist attitude re America playing a leading role in the world. Possibly more about her curious upbringing and her bigoted, anti-gay father's influence on her.

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mimi's picture

@wokkamile
but they deserve to be occupied and if they try to undermine Tulsi, they should hear a nice roaring ear full from the audience.

Sigh.

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@mimi but apparently this debate is co-hosted by our good friends at CNN and the NYT, held at some small, obscure university I've never heard of in Ohio. So I couldn't say whether the audience will be likely to create a ruckus over Tulsi getting screwed. Since it's Ohio, my guess is probably not.

Please tune in tomorrow mimi. Starts at 5pm PT, 8pm ET. I don't know what time that will be in Deutschland.

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mimi's picture

@wokkamile
that will be 2 am next day, middle of the night here. Tough one... Tulsi better makes a lot of noise ... Smile

I will watch it, will get my alarm clock set and sleep six hours straight right before that.

Ohio, wasn't that a swing State Ohio once upon the time in 2006. There is this movie from 2006 ... Swing State Ohio - a docuentary by Jed Wolfington.

Well, well, and where are those guys today? I am sure you guessed it, but my mouth is sealed.

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness

many polls are not measuring reality, but trying to sell a certain vision of it to the public.

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3 users have voted.

Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@Wally

which they seem to crank up earlier and earlier every election season. This time it cranked up about six months ago. And the polls the media focus on the most are not polls about policy, but polls about which candidate people like, trust, and/or would vote for. Answers to those questions can change drastically over time, much more than people's opinions on policy generally do.

So people are primed to focus on polls, predicting the success and failure of candidates on the basis of them many moons before any such thing is warranted. Since what's being sold is the idea that your candidate is winning or losing in the moment based on his or her polling ranking--an idea which is near-completely inaccurate--Americans experience big emotional highs and lows in response to them, highs and lows that are very similar to the emotions elicited by watching playoff sports or a reality tv show (who will be voted off the island next?)

It was a few years ago that I worked in campaign politics, but back then, the most predictive polls were the ones six weeks or less out from the election. Six months out was less predictive; longer than that was unlikely to be predictive of who would win or lose. In fact, some of the polls around the last Democratic primary (as you mention) show that even late polls can be amazingly wrong.

The only useful information that might come out of such polls, if they are done honestly, is information for the campaign that tells them where their candidates' strengths and weaknesses are. But you have to dig into the data to get that information, not simply recite (football) rankings.

And all that's assuming that I don't think polls are ever fabricated to create an emotional reaction. I don't assume that at all. I think we've already seen plain evidence that at least some polls are absolutely manipulated with an eye to getting certain results. That doesn't mean that no polls are accurate, of course. But we know some are being used, not to measure reality, but to market a certain vision of reality to the public.

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5 users have voted.

Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

we shouldn't be talking about any nationwide polls at this point. It's fucking ridiculous.

Kind of like turning the debates into the NBA playoffs is ridiculous.

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13 users have voted.

Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

Actually cited by the Black Power Ratings for Week 13...

Has Bernie in a distant third, Biden in second, and Warren clearly in front for all persons polled.

Sanders is also in a distant third place for Black persons polled.

https://poll.qu.edu/images/polling/us/us10082019_uljv62.pdf/

But he is number one in the Black Power ratings, behind Warren. Go figure.

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@davidgmillsatty
I believe that. Black voters are going to give us Biden because he was Obama's VP.

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Wally's picture

@The Voice In the Wilderness

. . . focusing on AAs with Warren. He got 16%, she got 20%. Biden got 36%.

Again, it's a national poll being brought up after other discussants in this thread agreed national polls sucked especially this early.

I'd add that I've always thought the Q polls suck particularly bad.

Some folks will go out of their way to be negative towards Bernie. Such is life.

BTW, the Black Power rankings in The Root are not based on polling, but rather on weekly vibes as discerned by the editors.

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I am convinced that Bernie will not get the democratic party nomination. The establishment democrats will use the polls on where to direct their election tampering. Phony polls will try to convince voters Bernie has lost and go vote for Elizabeth Obama or Hillary Biden.

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Wally's picture

@MrWebster

Phony polls will try to convince voters Bernie has lost and go vote for Elizabeth Obama or Hillary Biden.

I think Warren is actually linked more with HerHeinous and Biden with Obama.

And, hey, as Alligator Ed would remind us, don't forget Her whose name should only be spoken by very angry alligators.

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Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal's picture

@MrWebster

they could be an excellent voter suppression device as well.

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Actually, the issue at stake is patriotism. You must return to your world and put an end to the Commies. All it takes are a few good men.
--Q

Exit polls not involving George W. Bush or Hillary Clinton tend to be quite accurate.
--Doug Hatlem

@Cant Stop the Macedonian Signal I remember reading poll touted by all the major Oregon news outlets that about a week and half ahead of the primary, Hillary would win by double digits. Instead Bernie I believe won by double digits. I thought that Oregon would go for Berniew 60%+ given the images of the massive rallies he generated while campaigning in the Portland area. I wonder if that single poll surpressed Bernie votes as it was predicting a massive victory for Hillary.

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