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How can polls be close?

See data below.  How can the polls be close?



Indicator                      January 2009                June 2012
Unemployment:              7.8% then                        8.3% now
Median income:              $54,983 then                $50,964 now
Gas prices:                      $1.85 per gal. then        $3.78 per gal. now
National debt:              $10.6 trillion then        $15.9 trillion now
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EricLynnWright
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EricLynnWright
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Anthony RussoCommented:
Source of numbers?

Given that your numbers are accurate, honestly the polls are close because people vote on feeling, and not issues. People like Obama and don't like Romney. That's enough for the masses of uneducated voters.
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EricLynnWrightAuthor Commented:
>>Source of numbers?

See below.  Asked to the Obama team this past Sunday.   The ultimate source, per the screen, appears to be the government.
stats

>>honestly the polls are close because people vote on feeling

What are people feeling?
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Anthony RussoCommented:
>>>>Source of numbers?

Thanks for the course, and while the bottom source says BLS, that FoxNews logo in the corner is a bit troubling, but we;ll go with the assumption they are accurate.

>>What are people feeling?

As I said, they Like Obama. They don't Like Romney. Judging by issues, then the Republican argument will hold a lot more water. Judging by the crappy Meet the Press interview Mitt and Ann did, they are sinking fast. She pretty much backtracked on her tuna eating past that she talked about at the RNC saying they didn't have financial troubles (so that was just a lie I guess), and then he said he liked the pre-existing condition of ObamaCare and then quickly had to backtrack out of that after the interview when his base got all upset.

Her calling people ridiculous for thinking that rich people who don't have financial difficulties can't have empathy for poorer people that do was a bad idea. That's EXACTLY how most middle class and poorer people feel about rich people. Another example of how out of touch she is with the American public, and by association, him.

Him saying what sounded good at the time (supporting pre-existing conditions) and then backing out on it after the interview because his base got mad. Kind of re-affirms the flip-flop image for him.

People LIKE Obama. .People don't LIKE Romney. That is why Obama will win.
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beetosCommented:
It's more than "like vs. dislike"


Yes those numbers are troubling to the economy and average voter, but the cause of those numbers is not necessarily assigned to Obama.  

People remember the bank bailouts, TARP, and the financial melt down.   They're aware that the President doesn't set gas prices.  They're aware that Repbulicans in congress have adapted a scorched earth policy of opposing anything Obama wants to do.   They're seeing Republican candidates attack Obama for the same things they stymied when they had the chance to do something.   They're seeing Republican candidates take credit for things in the Stimulus that they fought against.   People aren't as dumb as you think.

Republicans themselves don't like Romney.    He wouldn't even be the candidate except all of the other candidates were far too radical.   Everyone had their chance at number 1, and then dropped off.   Romney had a low per centage, but it was a constant low.   Republicans didn't choose Romney as their candidate, they got stuck with him.

Given all that, it's surprising the polls are as close as they are.
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Anthony RussoCommented:
There is the 1% of us that talk on these forums and others about politics all the time and are very knowledgeable. (Pretty split down party lines and not enough independents to me)

I think there are the 10% that know what the hell is going on with politics for the most part and keep informed. (Still split down party lines leaning right)

Then maybe about 50% that know about as much that there was a bank bailout and auto bailout and an economy crash. Lightly keeping this stuff on their peripheral vision if they have time and maybe will check out some stuff lightly the week before and read highlights of the debates on Facebook and news. (Party lines still but leaning left and this is the sway-able vote the ads are going after, along with the next group)

Then there is the 39% that don't know what anything is but just like the guy who speaks better or seems like the nicer guy. Or maybe 5 seconds of that commercial they saw 75 times sunk in and that made up their mind. Also this group sure isn't bothering to take political polls or anything. (Heavily Obama as he is like-able and Romney isn't to them)

That's why Obama will win but the polls are close.
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EricLynnWrightAuthor Commented:
>>They're aware that the President doesn't set gas prices.  

-President Lobbying Against Keystone XL Pipeline Jobs

-Obama Admin Objects to Alaska Oil and Gas Development Bill


>>They're aware that Repbulicans in congress have adapted a scorched earth policy of opposing anything Obama wants to do.

No Republican voted for Obamacare and it still passed.  


>>They're seeing Republican candidates take credit for things in the Stimulus that they fought against.  

No mention of stimulus, Obamacare [at Dem Convention]
(Obama won't even take credit for it)


>>He wouldn't even be the candidate except all of the other candidates were far too radical.

More radical than Obama?


>>Then there is the 39% that don't know what anything

Debates will come in to play.



>>That's why Obama will win but the polls are close.

Flashback: Gallup Had Carter Up 4 Points Over Ronald Reagan in September 1980
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Anthony RussoCommented:
>>Gallup Had Carter Up 4 Points Over Ronald Reagan in September 1980

In 1980 people had land phones and answered them. Now only old people do, and conservatives. Hence why polls lean to the right.

>>Debates will come in to play.

Yes they will. And when the discussion of the issues goes flying over their uneducated heads they will vote based on who they LIKED better.
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EricLynnWrightAuthor Commented:
>>In 1980 people had land phones and answered them. Now only old people do, and conservatives. Hence why polls lean to the right.

the polls were correct in 2010 when Republicans took control of the House.


>>will vote based on who they LIKED better.

Do you think people would like Obama if they knew the REAL Obama and his real agenda?
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beetosCommented:
Do you think people would like Obama if they knew the REAL Obama and his real agenda?

Yes, I believe they would.  


Unfortunately for the US, the Republicans and their conservative allies have chosen to manufacture something that doesn't exist:  A socialist-marxist-kenyan-terrorist.  "Community organizer" has come to be a bad word.   The non-exsitent threat of Socialism is a rallying cry for the Tea Party.

Think back to when Clinton was in office - the Repubs did the same thing, calling him a radical and going on a witch hunt to pin anything they could on him to discredit him in their quest for power.   I clearly remember them claiming the attacks on OBL were just a distraction from the Lewinsky scandal.    Clearly, they were not.     Now Republican's are claiming "Clinton was a great President."  

In the future, Obama will be recognized as a great President as well.
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Anthony RussoCommented:
>>the polls were correct in 2010 when Republicans took control of the House.

Not much of a stretch there. I could also predict the sun will rise tomorrow and be right.

>>Do you think people would like Obama if they knew the REAL Obama and his real agenda?

If the public found out what the conservatives think to be true, most of them wouldn't "Get it" anyway and would just think it's more propaganda since they all just lie back and forth anyway.

The 2016 movie did really well apparently. The Polls you value so much sure didn't have Obama drop though after that big opening weekend though.
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EricLynnWrightAuthor Commented:
>>The 2016 movie did really well apparently.

Anti-Obama Pic #2 Political Documentary: Now Bigger Than 3 Michael Moore Movies


>>Not much of a stretch there. I could also predict the sun will rise tomorrow and be right.

2012 will be a referendum on Obama.  Either we want socialism and bankruptcy, or we want to restore fiscal responsibility.


>>If the public found out what the conservatives think to be true

So he didn't sit in an anti-American church for 20 years?  He did fulfill all his promises?  He doesn't run false ads?  He doesn't punish political adversaries?  He does respect Christianity and the Constitution?


>>Think back to when Clinton was in office

I would take Clinton any day.  Outside of a dikk sukking from rather large chicks and lying under oath, he could move to the middle and was ACTUALLY intelligent (unlike Obama).



>>In the future, Obama will be recognized as a great President as well.

Jimmy Carter will be viewed as the second worst president.
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beetosCommented:
Another typical ELW thread.

"Obama is the devil - why don't the polls show that?"

But but but ... ratings = truth, right?   And this new anti-Obama movie made more money, (not adjusting for inflation or higher ticket prices ) than a movie made by a progressive liberal 10 years ago, so conservatives must be right!


*YAWN* - unmonitor.
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EricLynnWrightAuthor Commented:
Beetos, take it easy.  Can't get so worked up.
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Anthony RussoCommented:
>>Anti-Obama Pic #2 Political Documentary: Now Bigger Than 3 Michael Moore Movies

And yet he didn't drop in the polls like I said. So maybe other than the conservative base who already believed this stuff anyway, nobody else went to see it, or does it mean they just didn't buy it?

>>Either we want socialism and bankruptcy, or we want to restore fiscal responsibility.

The liberal extreme compared to the conservative moderate point. That's fair. I could easily say we want cooperation or to watch the poor die as the alternative way to phrase that sentence. Neither is correct.

>>So he didn't sit in an anti-American church for 20 years?  He did fulfill all his promises?  He doesn't run false ads?  He doesn't punish political adversaries?  He does respect Christianity and the Constitution?

Yes and No. None fulfill all their promises. They both run false ads. They both punish political adversaries. Yes and yes.

I would so much more be able to accept the claim about promises and false ads and punishing adversaries if you would just not act like the republicans are innocent of these things.
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EricLynnWrightAuthor Commented:
>>And yet he didn't drop in the polls like I said.

If the media would cover him like it covered Bush....


>>None fulfill all their promises.

True, but he promised the world and fulfilled closed to none of those promises.


>>I would so much more be able to accept the claim about promises and false ads and punishing adversaries if you would just not act like the republicans are innocent of these things.

Agree both sides do it, but not to the same degree.  The Democrats can't run on their record, so they demonize their opponents using lies and shady tactics.



CNN: OBAMA +6 POLLED MORE DEMS?
The latest CNN/ORC poll released today shows a wider lead for President Obama than the previous CNN/ORC poll but it is doubly skewed. It massively under-samples independents while it also over-samples Democratic voters.
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EricLynnWrightAuthor Commented:
For the record...

Proof that polls are accurate and that Rasmussen was the best.

Which presidential polls were most accurate?
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Anthony RussoCommented:
>>If the media would cover him like it covered Bush....

Ah yes. The old conservative 'were the victims' card. Wasn't the point of the movie to get around the media so people would learn the truth about Obama? Wasn't it the number one movie the weekend it was released? What happened?

>>CNN: OBAMA +6 POLLED MORE DEMS?

I saw that poll but didn't post it or comment on it for a reason. It's a poll of 1000 people. There are over 300 million people in this country. That's about 0.000003% of the country. Hardly a representative sampling no matter who they ask.

>>Agree both sides do it, but not to the same degree.

That's naive. Every account of a democrat doing it can find an equal account of republicans. Do you think there are more republicans than democrats who say "I can't run an ad like that even if people believe it. It would be wrong."

>>Proof that polls are accurate and that Rasmussen was the best.

Why Rasmussen polls tilt Republican | Uppity Wisconsin : http://uppitywis.org/why-rasmussen-polls-tilt-republican

Rasmussen Polls Were Biased and Inaccurate; Quinnipiac, SurveyUSA Performed Strongly - NYTimes.com : http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/11/04/rasmussen-polls-were-biased-and-inaccurate-quinnipiac-surveyusa-performed-strongly/

And here is another for your side:

Rasmussen, generally regarded as the most accurate poll, says Romney's slight lead over Obama has now widened to 7%. : http://www.sodahead.com/united-states/rasmussen-generally-regarded-as-the-most-accurate-poll-says-romneys-slight-lead-over-obama-has-no/question-2651819/

Hardly concrete proof. Even if they got it right in 2008.
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EricLynnWrightAuthor Commented:
>>Even if they got it right in 2008.

How could they get it right by sampling only "0.000003%" of the population?



>>It's a poll of 1000 people. There are over 300 million people in this country. That's about 0.000003% of the country.

It's impossible to sample the entire population, which is why statisticians are used.  You make it sound as if they're just randomly sampling people.  


>>Ah yes. The old conservative 'were the victims' card.

You honestly believe the media covers Obama the way they covered Bush?  The only parallel is the media COVERS UP for Obama in the same way they negatively covered Bush.
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Anthony RussoCommented:
>>How could they get it right by sampling only "0.000003%" of the population?

Did they poll only 1000 people to get that result? I doubt it. Even if they polled 10,000 people then, it is not as accurate today. Most polling is done through phone calls. Older more conservative people tend to answer their phone more than younger more liberal people if they don't know the number. Also once that phone is answered, older more conservative people will bother to talk with a political poll rather than younger more liberal people who would just hang up.

Half the people I know under 25 barely talk on their phone at all anyway and that is to people they know. They have other ways to communicate today. Why do you think Verizon and ATT just gave unlimited minutes to people and are charging more for data?

In all honesty, you have to be into politics to bother to take a poll. Most people who are into politics are more conservative because along the liberal side, most are just fed up with the whole thing and don't bother because they feel both sides suck.

On election day though they will go and vote democrat though.

>>It's impossible to sample the entire population, which is why statisticians are used.  You make it sound as if they're just randomly sampling people.  

They are randomly sampling people. That's the idea. If they only sampled certain types of people then the poll will be skewed as the CNN one was. And it is impossible to sample a large enough portion of the public to be accurate so it is all extrapolations of the few who answered the phone.

>>You honestly believe the media covers Obama the way they covered Bush?

No. But wasn't that the point of your 2016 movie? To get the message out since the media wont. The movie was #1 and still it didn't make a difference.
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EricLynnWrightAuthor Commented:
And here's an ABC poll in which Democrats way outnumbered Republicans.

33% Democrat, 23% Republican were surveyed.



>>Half the people I know under 25 barely talk on their phone at all anyway

A Romney first: over 40% of youth vote back him


>>On election day though they will go and vote democrat though.

Historically, undecideds go AGAINST the incumbent - advantage Romney.


>>No. But wasn't that the point of your 2016 movie?

I never said that.  Takes more than a movie.  You have the main media outlets covering for Obama every day - all 3 networks rarely cover negative Obama stories.  With Bush, they beat a dead horse night in and night out.  Of course the population would turn against him.
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Anthony RussoCommented:
>>And here's an ABC poll in which Democrats way outnumbered Republicans.

This Washington Post-ABC News poll was conducted by telephone September 7-9, 2012, among a random national sample of 1,002 adults, including landline and cell phone-only respondents. Results for the full sample have a margin of sampling error of 3.5 percentage points. The error margin is four points for the sample of 826 registered voters, and 4.5 points for the sample of 710 likely voters. Sampling, data collection and tabulation by Abt-SRBI of New York.

So the 100 democrat difference is representative of WAY OUTNUMBERING this incredibly accurate representation of our nation of 314 million?
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EricLynnWrightAuthor Commented:
>>So the 100 democrat difference is representative of WAY OUTNUMBERING this incredibly accurate representation of our nation of 314 million?

This proves the complete distortion of the ABC poll.  

Conservatives Remain the Largest Ideological Group in U.S.

Political ideology in the U.S. held steady in 2011, with 40% of Americans continuing to describe their views as conservative, 35% as moderate, and 21% as liberal.
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Anthony RussoCommented:
Haven't we gone through how i think most polls swing conservative? what is this supposed to show me?
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EricLynnWrightAuthor Commented:
>>Haven't we gone through how i think most polls swing conservative?

You didn't make a compelling case if you did.

I think I've shown the complete opposite without opinion involved.  That is, shown that the sampling is skewed towards Democrats.
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Anthony RussoCommented:
>>I think I've shown the complete opposite without opinion involved.  That is, shown that the sampling is skewed towards Democrats.

On a few polls from obviously agenda networks. No revelation there.

Accurately done polls are going to swing conservative for the reasons I stated. You may not believe my reasons but that is the way society today uses their phones.
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EricLynnWrightAuthor Commented:
>>Accurately done polls are going to swing conservative for the reasons I stated. You may not believe my reasons but that is the way society today uses their phones

I will concede that is your opinion and what you believe.

However, the polls were inaccurate back in Reagan days at this time in the election and land lines were abundant.  Not to mention Rasmussen got it right in 2008 and 2010, which is a time when cell phones were heavily used.
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