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Parsing the Polls - If Gallup is right, Tuesday will be a long night for the Democratic party
NRO ^ | November 3, 2012 | Michael G. Franc

Posted on 11/03/2012 12:47:29 AM PDT by GonzoII

NATIONAL REVIEW ONLINE          www.nationalreview.com          

Parsing the Polls

Last week, the Gallup Organization provided more fodder for the debate over whether this year’s polls are skewed due to a systematic over-representation of Democrats in the samples. If Gallup has it right, Governor Romney’s lead may be several percentage points greater than the most recent round of polls suggests. 

Gallup reviewed all of its interviews with “likely voters” conducted since October 1. Its conclusion: “The composition of the electorate for the 2012 presidential election is looking quite similar to what it was in 2008 as well as 2004.” Indeed, whether the sample is broken out on the basis of race, gender, level of education, or geographic location, the percentage of likely voters in each subset is no different than it was four years earlier. 

But Gallup uncovered one very significant shift in this year’s voting electorate. There has been a remarkable movement toward the Republican party. As Gallup reports:

The largest changes in the composition of the electorate compared with the last presidential election concern the partisan affiliation of voters. Currently, 46% of likely voters identify as Democrats or lean Democratic, compared with 54% in 2008. But in 2008, Democrats enjoyed a wide 12-point advantage in party affiliation among national adults, the largest Gallup had seen in at least two decades. More recently, Americans have been about as likely to identify as or lean Republican as to identify as or lean Democratic. Consequently, the electorate has also become less Democratic and more Republican in its political orientation than in 2008. In fact, the party composition of the electorate this year looks more similar to the electorate in 2004 than 2008.

If anything, Gallup understates the case. In 2008, Democrats enjoyed a decisive ten-point advantage in partisan affiliation, 39 percent to 29 percent. When undecided voters were pushed to choose a party, the Democrats’ edge grew by another two points, to 54 percent to 42 percent. Yet in the Gallup polls conducted since October 1, the two parties have pulled even, with Republicans actually ahead by a statistically insignificant percentage point, 36 percent to 35 percent. After being pushed to choose a party, likely voters give the Republicans a further boost, resulting in an overall three-point advantage of 49 percent to 46 percent.

If you are keeping score, in slightly less than four years President Obama has presided over an eleven-point decrease in his party’s standing with the American people, 15 points if you include those voters who “lean” one way or the other. 

The Pew Research Center has posted party identification data going all the way back to 1929. The data series suggests that this deterioration in the Democrats’ standing with American voters is nearly unprecedented. The only comparable meltdown occurred during the tumultuous years of the Vietnam War and the birth of the Great Society under LBJ, when the Democrats also suffered an eleven-point loss relative to their Republican rivals. 

If you are wondering which president defied the odds and steered his party forward during his time in office, try Ronald Reagan. From 1981 to 1988 the Gipper’s principled conservative leadership whittled the Democrats’ initial 14-point edge down to a mere five points.

To be sure, the most recent spate of national polls include more Republicans than did the surveys conducted earlier in October. Nevertheless, they still give more advantage to the Democrats than Gallup’s aggregate data suggest should be the case. ABC/Wall Street Journal’s most recent poll, for example, includes 34 percent Democrats and 30 percent Republicans, the Investors Business Daily poll sets the Democrats’ advantage at seven points (38 percent to 31 percent), and an Associated Press survey comes in two percentage points more Democratic than Republican.  

Correcting these polls so that there was a Republican edge in the sample of voters consistent with Gallup’s finding would hand Romney a lead between five to ten points. Imagine the run on smelling salts at Mother Jones and MSNBC if that were to happen?

— Michael G. Franc is vice president of government studies at The Heritage Foundation. 

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TOPICS: Editorial; News/Current Events; Political Humor/Cartoons
KEYWORDS: gallup; poll; polls; romney2012
Gallup's got some guts!!
1 posted on 11/03/2012 12:47:39 AM PDT by GonzoII
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To: GonzoII

I’m just going to be humbly confident for now. I don’t trust any of these poll outfits. All I know is, 0bama sucks.


2 posted on 11/03/2012 1:03:22 AM PDT by Obama_Is_Sabotaging_America
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To: GonzoII

Good article—I continue to call it 54-46.

This is not a close race—what we have here is a 1980 style polling debacle that could be seen (by cynics like me) as an attempt to create a horse race where none exists.


3 posted on 11/03/2012 1:08:32 AM PDT by cgbg (No bailouts for New York and California. Let them eat debt.)
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To: cgbg

I too predict a landslide for Republicans with a squeaker win for control of the Senate. Let the prosecutions begin under a Guilliani AG!


4 posted on 11/03/2012 1:10:41 AM PDT by WMarshal (Free citizen, never a subject or a civilian)
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To: cgbg

I too predict a landslide for Republicans with a squeaker win for control of the Senate. Let the prosecutions begin under a Guilliani AG!


5 posted on 11/03/2012 1:10:41 AM PDT by WMarshal (Free citizen, never a subject or a civilian)
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To: Obama_Is_Sabotaging_America

Obama does indeed suck. I think he will lose. I can’t wait for the stories of an angry Michelle and the mother in law start leaking out. Michelle and her mother have had it good, now they are going to have to move. Let the plates fly! And I’ll bet within a year, Baraq is either outed or comes out himself..


6 posted on 11/03/2012 1:15:12 AM PDT by cardinal4 (Vote him out!)
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To: cgbg

Let’s face it - the LSM wants to create interest so that people will tune in to watch their lousy network coverage and bias. Not that it will do them any good, of course, because most of us will only watch a reputable station. I also think all these polls and pollsters are doing the same thing - its called hype. They have to justify their jobs and people are anxious about this election.

That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. Who would care if we all knew the outcome beforehand? It would be a snooze fest.


7 posted on 11/03/2012 2:47:09 AM PDT by Catsrus (WANT)
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To: GonzoII

Gallup’s got some guts!!

Gallup wants to stay in business by reporting accurately what is going to happen.

In other words he wants his polls to have credibility in the last couple of days of the election campaign.


8 posted on 11/03/2012 3:22:36 AM PDT by chainsaw ("Two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is by the sword. The other is by debt.")
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To: GonzoII

A ray of hope: The liberal Austin American-Statesman reports that early voting is down in liberal Travis County but up in the rest Texas, which is, of course, Romney country. I hope this reflects a national trend.


9 posted on 11/03/2012 3:32:07 AM PDT by djpg
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To: GonzoII

I promised my wife that if Romney wins Tuesday, we will watch MSNBC all night to see the liberals implode. Might record it all so I can watch it over and over.


10 posted on 11/03/2012 3:33:25 AM PDT by Chainmail (A simple rule of life: if you can be blamed, you're responsible.)
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To: Catsrus

Let’’s see, each candidate has about a billion dollars... Now where does that money get spent in a “close” race? Hmmm... Oh yeah, more media advertising!

I saw this in Wisconsin too. The media kept telling us it was a dogfight , complete with polls, until the last few days when the polls had to ‘fess up and show Walker ahead. Walker need up winning with even more than predicted... and the media feasted on all the advertising spent in the campaign.


11 posted on 11/03/2012 3:43:21 AM PDT by Obadiah (The corrupt MSM is the enemy of the American people.)
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To: Obama_Is_Sabotaging_America

I’m with you, quietly confident...but will wait for 0bamas concession speech. The media are trying to remain relevant. They are the next target. Pravda in the U.S. must be dismantled or run out of town. I, too, will wait for video of various msnbc are leftie-stalwarts reaction.

The last four years have been miserable for us. I pray to God that the nightmare is over in three days.


12 posted on 11/03/2012 4:10:25 AM PDT by SueRae (See it? Hell, I can TASTE November from my house!)
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To: All

now you know why the liberals are so hell bent to let anyone cross the border, to reverse he trend by flooding the counry with democratic voters (legal or otherwise).


13 posted on 11/03/2012 4:11:35 AM PDT by willywill
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To: cgbg
Good point. Some years ago I read a great article about the 1980 election from an insider in the Carter campaign. Carter was told by his advisors as early as the summer of 1980 that he was going to lose the election badly, but he basically had to go through the motions and mount a competitive campaign because they were afraid that a total capitulation would bring devastating losses in Congress and in other races at the state and local level.

I don't think this is quite the same kind of landslide in the making, but I've always sensed that Obama has been in so far over his head for years -- and he knows it.

14 posted on 11/03/2012 4:17:09 AM PDT by Alberta's Child ("If you touch my junk, I'm gonna have you arrested.")
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To: GonzoII
Gallup is a polling company. They have to have defensible means and reasonably accurate results if they're to stay in business. Other firms can afford to tailor their results to their clients. Gallup publishes theirs to the public.

Chris Wallace had an interview with one of Gallup's polling gurus. Chris was asking him how Gallup weights their D/R/I samples. His answer was that they don't. They ask questions about for whom you're voting, other questions designed to determine if you're a likely voter, and then party affiliation. Didn't see anything about if they subselect their results to normalize age, ethnicity, income, etc.

Pollsters who are subselecting based on party have to choose between 2008's lopsided results and 2010 reversal. Personally, I don't see anything in 2011 or 2012 that would indicate a flip back toward D+7 territory. Anti-Obama forces have not been mollified; If anything, they're more intense as a result of the Obamacare Supreme Court decision.

Gallup is standing out for their R+1 turnout prediction. I hope they're a touchstone; Would love to see a 52-47 and 300+ EVs. It's a weird situation, having so much polling data and no convergence. Personally, I think a pollster weighting anything except a nearly even D/R ratio is playing with fire.

I predict the media will seize on depressed turnout in NY/NY/CT to characterize Obama's downfall as something other than wholesale rejection of his agenda. Those states could cut their turnout in half and 0bama loses no EVs.

The key question, one being ignore by the media, is what is happening in Philly. PA is in play. If the storm impacts eastern PA turnout, it could turn PA red.

One last note: By Tuesday, a lot of NY/NJ voters will have been without power for a week and many will have seen little/nothing from the Federal government except FEMA forms. I don't believe they'll take it out on Romney.

15 posted on 11/03/2012 4:18:07 AM PDT by Dilbert56
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To: Dilbert56
One last note: By Tuesday, a lot of NY/NJ voters will have been without power for a week and many will have seen little/nothing from the Federal government except FEMA forms. I don't believe they'll take it out on Romney.

Particularly when they find out that Democrat union bosses turned away help from utility workers who drove their bucket-trucks up from Georgia because they were non-union.

16 posted on 11/03/2012 4:39:05 AM PDT by FrdmLvr (culture, language, borders)
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To: Dilbert56

we just need one pict on drudge in the devastated areas of NJ with a sign that reads....”Now we know how the guys felt in Benghazi”


17 posted on 11/03/2012 4:51:40 AM PDT by Walkingfeather
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To: SueRae

Mitt’s rally in Ohio last night has given me confidence. He had the crowd of 30,000 fired up.

But do you really think Obama will make a concession speech? He is a classless fool. I can’t see him humbling himself.


18 posted on 11/03/2012 5:27:57 AM PDT by Atlantan
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To: Chainmail
That is a great idea... never thought of doing that. I was all set to watch Fox, etc.

Change of plans.

Change... you can believe in.

19 posted on 11/03/2012 5:30:37 AM PDT by caddie
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To: Atlantan

He’ll put it out in a Twitter note #fail..epic ;-)


20 posted on 11/03/2012 5:40:00 AM PDT by SueRae (See it? Hell, I can TASTE November from my house!)
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To: Atlantan
But do you really think Obama will make a concession speech? He is a classless fool. I can’t see him humbling himself.

"Well Michelle and I fought a good race, we brought change to America, the landscape has changed due to all your hard work. In 2008 you wanted to make the American dream possible for everyone and you did. We will continue to fight on for affordable healthcare for everyone, stopping global warming, civil rights and for economic equality for all Americans."

This is what you will hear...., whatever Magic Negro, go home and pack..

21 posted on 11/03/2012 5:53:09 AM PDT by pburgh01
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To: GonzoII

We could be in for YEARS of DUFU comedy gold!!!


22 posted on 11/03/2012 5:53:42 AM PDT by PJ-Comix (Beware the Rip in the Space/Time Continuum)
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To: Chainmail
...we will watch MSNBC all night to see the liberals implode...

What a party that will be - better than watching the Super Bowl!

23 posted on 11/03/2012 5:58:09 AM PDT by jonno (Having an opinion is not the same as having the answer...)
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To: chainsaw
In other words he wants his polls to have credibility in the last couple of days of the election campaign.

Probably, but that's the only time it could, as most voters just aren't paying attention until about two weeks before an election.

24 posted on 11/03/2012 6:07:48 AM PDT by ROCKLOBSTER (Celebrate "Republicans Freed the Slaves" Month)
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To: GonzoII

Why does everybody seem to act as if the 2010 election never happened? Democrats lost something like 700 seats nationwide. The anger that grew in 2009 and 2010 has not abated one bit...it has grown.


25 posted on 11/03/2012 6:10:03 AM PDT by ProtectOurFreedom
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To: Alberta's Child

and he knows it.

He certainly does. Obama would not have purchased a home in Hawaii if he thought he was going to win. Why not wait until after the election to purchase a home if he thought he was going to win? I know he has to purchase a home either for January 2013 or January 2017 regardless, but to do so before the election 2012 proves he knows he is going to lose.


26 posted on 11/03/2012 6:26:11 AM PDT by napscoordinator (GOP Candidate 2020 - "Bloomberg 2020 - We vote for whatever crap the GOP puts in front of us.")
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To: ProtectOurFreedom

The campaigns already have a pretty good sense of how this race is going to play out. And many in the media do, but will not share until after the election.

And by 10pm on election night, both campaigns will probably be 99% certain of the final outcome. If there are 2-3 states that could be challenged for a recount, then then will not concede. If they know the gig is up, Obama will concede pretty quickly and pack for Hawaii.


27 posted on 11/03/2012 6:26:52 AM PDT by gswilder
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To: djpg
The liberal Austin American-Statesman reports that early voting is down in liberal Travis County but up in the rest Texas, which is, of course, Romney country.

I live in far NW Travis county near the lake. There are several hundred Romney signs and two 0 bummer signs, the last of which went up this week. I stood in line for over an hour the other day for early voting. People were talking about less spending and getting rid of 0 bummer care.

28 posted on 11/03/2012 6:35:20 AM PDT by Arrowhead1952 ("It's better to vote for a Republican you don't know than wind up with a dim you don't like".)
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To: ProtectOurFreedom
Good point, but keep in mind that voter turnout in a midterm election is consistently lower than in presidential election years.

Some major state-level elections are even more unconventional because they occur in "mid-midterm" years. The governor of New Jersey and the mayor of New York City, for example, were both elected in 2009.

29 posted on 11/03/2012 6:37:33 AM PDT by Alberta's Child ("If you touch my junk, I'm gonna have you arrested.")
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To: GonzoII

A lot of Reagan Democrats reached the conclusion that their party has veered so far left, they don’t recognize it any longer.

So they’ve just made it official and come home to the GOP. Or if they couldn’t make it that far, they’ve at least gone Indie.


30 posted on 11/03/2012 6:39:15 AM PDT by randita
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To: GonzoII

CYA


31 posted on 11/03/2012 6:39:50 AM PDT by bert ((K.E. N.P. N.C. +12 ..... Present failure and impending death yield irrational action))
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To: cgbg
Good article—I continue to call it 54-46.

Here's to hoping we're all calling you a genius come Wednesday if not sooner.

32 posted on 11/03/2012 6:40:34 AM PDT by Caipirabob (Communists... Socialists... Democrats...Traitors... Who can tell the difference?)
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To: GonzoII
They didn't do well in 2008, so they may feel they have soemthing to prove.
33 posted on 11/03/2012 7:17:35 AM PDT by hinckley buzzard
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To: Obama_Is_Sabotaging_America; All

‘Romney’s Pennsylvania push not a mirage’

The left and the Obama campaign have been pooh-poohing the notion that Mitt Romney has any chance of winning Pennsylvania, despite devoting millions of dollars in ads and visits by the candidate himself to the state this weekend. David Axelrod has gone so far as to say he will shave his moustache off if Romney takes the Keystone State.

But there is a method to Mitt’s supposed madness, as Jay Cost so ably explains:

Broad context: PA outside of Philly County has been trending red for 20 years. It has so far been checked by Dem turnout in Philly County, but Philly County’s population has been flat. So turnout increases in the county are from turnout machines/enthusiasm alone. At some point, that could breakdown.

So assume:

(a) Total PA turnout is up 3% over 2008. Philly County comprises 11.5% of total PA electorate (similar to 2004, less than 2008).

(b) Romney wins non-Philly county 54-46. (Slightly better than Bush ‘04, who won 52.5 to 47.5)

Then:

Obama MUST net 433k votes out of Philly County to win. In 2008 he netted 478k votes. In 2004 Kerry netted 410k votes. In 2000 Gore netted 350k votes.

Tweak the assumptions to lower Philly turnout, increase non-Philly turnout, increase Romney share of non-Philly. And Keystone State goes red.

The electorate has changed since 2008 in several states, including Pennsylvania, Minnesota, and Colorado. These states are all trending red and liberals may be in a for a very rude surprise on Wednesday morning.

Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2012/11/romneys_pennsylvania_push_not_a_mirage.html#ixzz2BAWCgULn


34 posted on 11/03/2012 7:39:20 AM PDT by Hotlanta Mike (Resurrect the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC)...before there is no America!)
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To: GonzoII
"If you are keeping score, in slightly less than four years President Obama has presided over an eleven-point decrease in his party’s standing with the American people, 15 points if you include those voters who “lean” one way or the other."

More FAIL for 0.

35 posted on 11/03/2012 7:49:18 AM PDT by Jane Long (Soli Deo Gloria!)
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To: PJ-Comix
Voters have come to understand this recession and housing meltdown was caused by Democrats, not "failed capitalism." That's why Bambam's last-ditch, complaining argument, "Ykno stay with me, don't go back to the days of bad policies" is totally hilarious, AND BEING UTTERLY REJECTED BY VOTERS.
36 posted on 11/03/2012 8:15:30 AM PDT by 4Liberty (Some on our "Roads & Bridges" head to the beach. Others head to their offices, farms, libraries....)
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To: jonno

MSNBC will seize on a Democratic victory in a dog-catcher race in Dubuque, Iowa as offering “hope for a Democratic come-back”. :-)


37 posted on 11/04/2012 3:36:20 AM PST by cgbg (No bailouts for New York and California. Let them eat debt.)
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To: napscoordinator

He certainly does. Obama would not have purchased a home in Hawaii if he thought he was going to win. Why not wait until after the election to purchase a home if he thought he was going to win?

You may be right. Four more years of the Kenyan and the price could be close to zero. Figuratively speaking.


38 posted on 11/06/2012 1:48:16 AM PST by chainsaw ("Two ways to conquer and enslave a nation. One is by the sword. The other is by debt.")
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