The Polling Report [9.29.12]

Filed in National by on September 29, 2012

Hey, Republicans. We have been where you are now. The year was 2004, and we liberals could not believe that President Bush was leading John Kerry, a candidate that most of us liberals did not like but had embraced in what turned out to be a vain effort to defeat President Bush. We sought out any argument that proved that the polls were false. Those arguments were that the pollsters were sampling too many Republicans. Sound familiar? And how did that election turn out? The polls were right, much to our chagrin.

The polls are right now. President Obama is winning and winning convincingly. Indeed, according to Nate Silver, there is now more of a chance that Barack Obama will win by a landslide than Mitt Romney will win at all.

There is one basic fact that Republicans now and we liberals in 2004 ignore when we discounted polls: polling companies want to be right because that’s their business model. If they are accurate, they get more business from media organizations and candidates. Remember, media organizations and candidates and party organizations and other organizations hire and pay polling companies and institutes to perform the polls and get accurate results. If they are skewing polls for reasons other than being accurate, then they would lose money. You should understand this Republicans. It’s free market capitalism.

Now, there are some polling organizations whose business model is not to be accurate but to drive narratives in the media. Rasmussen is one such example. They get paid not to be right, but to be favorable to one side. So Republicans, as always, you are so very good at projection. The thing you decry is the thing you rely on.

NATIONAL
Gallup Tracking: Obama 50, Romney 44
Ipsos/Reuters Tracking: Obama 47, Romney 42 (LV); Obama 46, Romney 39 (RV)
Rasmussen Tracking w/Leaners: Obama 48, Romney 48
UPI/CVoter Tracking: Obama 48, Romney 46

STATES
MAINE (Rasmussen): Obama 52, Romney 40—Strong Obama
MICHIGAN (Gravis Marketing–R): Obama 50, Romney 46 (LV); Obama 53, Romney 41 (RV)
MICHIGAN (PPP for the National Resources Defense Council): Obama 51, Romney 42

The average of the three results is 51.3 to 43, so Michigan is Lean Obama.

NEW HAMPSHIRE (American Research Group): Obama 50, Romney—Lean Obama
NEW MEXICO (PPP for the National Resources Defense Council): Obama 52, Romney 43
NEW MEXICO (Public Opinion Strategies for the Heather Wilson for Senate campaign): Obama 47, Romney 40, Johnson 9
The average is 49.5 to 41.5, or a lead of 8 points, or Lean Obama.
NORTH DAKOTA (DFM Research for the ND Democratic Party): Romney 51, Obama 39—Strong Romney
OHIO (PPP for the National Resources Defense Council): Obama 50, Romney 44—Lean Obama
PENNSYLVANIA (Muhlenberg College/Allentown Morning Call): Obama 49, Romney 42
PENNSYLVANIA (PPP for the National Resources Defense Council): Obama 52, Romney 40

The average is 50.5 to 41, or just short of Strong Obama, or Lean Obama.

VIRGINIA (American Research Group): Obama 49, Romney 47
VIRGINIA (PPP for the National Resources Defense Council): Obama 49, Romney 43

The average is Obama 49, Romney 45, or Slim Obama.

SENATE
MICHIGAN (Gravis Marketing–R): Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D) 54, Pete Hoekstra (R) 40 (LV); Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D) 54, Pete Hoekstra (R) 37 (RV)—Strong Dem
MONTANTA (Global Strategy Group for the League of Conservation Voters–D): Sen. Jon Tester (D) 44, Denny Rehberg (R) 42, Dan Cox (L) 7—Slim Dem
NEW MEXICO (GBA Strategies for the Heinrich campaign): Martin Heinrich (D) 52, Heather Wilson (R) 44—Lean Dem
NORTH DAKOTA (DFM Research for the ND Democratic Party): Heidi Heitkamp (D) 48, Rick Berg (R) 44—Slim Dem
PENNSYLVANIA (Muhlenberg College/Allentown Morning Call): Sen. Bob Casey (D) 44, Tom Smith (R) 36—Lean Dem

Right now, the Dems will pick up one seat.

GOVERNOR
NH-GOV (PPP for the PCCC): Maggie Hassan (D) 51, Ovide Lamontagne (R) 44
NC-GOV (National Research for Civitas–R): Pat McCrory (R) 49, Walter Dalton (D) 38, Barbara Howe (L) 3
WA-GOV (Rasmussen): Jay Inslee (D) 46, Rob McKenna (R) 45

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Comments (3)

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  1. cassandra_m says:

    In the middle of all of the sturm and drang on Twitter re: these polls (and the crazy GOP effort to try to “unskew” them), John Dean weighed in with this reminder:

    John Dean @JohnWDean 2d
    When watching the polls remember 2000, when Gore was up by 10 points. Most thought it impossible for W to win. Be careful. Think. And vote.

  2. Liberal Elite says:

    “If they are skewing polls for reasons other than being accurate, then they would lose money. You should understand this Republicans. It’s free market capitalism.”

    Not necessarily. FOX News has quite an affection for Rasmussen Polls, and they are consistently off to the right. Rasmussen assumes that the percentage of GOP voters is a fixed thing, and fixed at a rather large value. And so when they poll someone who claims to be a Republican, they give that opinion more weight… and that fits perfectly with the FOX News narrative.

  3. Delaware Dem says:

    Rasmussen is the exception, as I mentioned, because their business model is not to be accurate, but to give the GOP hope and to change the narrative. And a lot of conservative media pay them because that is what they want.

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