Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Why Aren't Liberal Polls Publishing?

Like so many other political junkies, I like to check polls in Election Season on a daily basis. Specifically, I check the Real Clear Politics Average, since it shows multiple polls in one easy location.  And I noticed something: Since Paul Ryan was picked as Mitt Romney's running mate, the only new polls published* are the reliable Gallup and Rasmussen, who each publish a daily tracking poll.

Other than those two who are as reliable as the tides in their daily polls, do you know how many other polls have been posted? ONE. And that was published yesterday.  As of the writing of this post (on Tuesday, August 21st, for the record) it has been ten days since the Ryan pick and only one poll aside from Rasmussen and Gallup has been published. Just over two months shy of election day. Intriguing, no?

What Gallup and Rasmussen show, as of the writing of this blog is Romney beating Obama 45% to 44% (Rasmussen) and Romney beating Obama 47% to 45% (Gallup)...certainly a happy trend for those who share my ideology. 

The only other poll, noted is a Monmouth/SurveyUSA/Braun poll that shows Obama beating Romney 46% to 45%. All three are within the margin for error. The sample on Monmoth is indeed slightly skewed to Democrats, as well, friends, giving them a 6% advantage. As we showed here on Monday, even if this is based on party registration not party leanings, the Democrats have only a 4% advantage. Which is intriguing because if we, for the sake of argument, assume that subtracting 2% Democrats and adding 2% Republicans to be at the party registration line alone, you could reasonably expect that Governor Romney would gain AT LEAST 1-2% in the poll, putting him again above Obama in THAT poll.

So why would the liberal pollsters not be polling? You can rest assured they're conducting polls, friends. There's no way you can believe that this close to an election they aren't conducting polls. So my guess is their polls are bad news to Obama. It may also have to do with the Real Clear Politics average that is published daily.

Now, for the record, Real Clear Politics is not to blame for what I am about to note. Their average is based on the last half dozen or so polls. (Perhaps it would be better to go with the last 7 days worth of polls, no matter how many there are, but I will give RCP the benefit of the doubt and guess that they feel three polls isn't enough to give a fair average.)  So the current average, instead of including polls from the last ten days, includes polls from the last seventeen days.

Included in that average are polls that have polling samples skewed beyond the believable 4% Democrat advantage...and remember, that's only if you go based on party registration, not party identification, since party identification is statistically tied between Democrats and Republicans. They also do not include the gains made by the Paul Ryan pick as running mate.

So why would this be happening? Answer: Real Clear Politics is continuing to use these outdated polls in their averages, making it look like the President is still leading Governor Romney. They can continue to report a slim lead for the President "In the RCP Average" while not noting that the polls are sadly outdated. They can continue to pretend the President is winning, when he is, in fact, not. The more then can dishearten conservatives, the better the chance Obama has to win. Disheartened conservatives won't financially support Governor Romney, after all.

* Post Script: As I mentioned I wrote this article on Tuesday, August 21st. As if the Internet was trolling me, both NBC and the Associated Press published polls today (August 22nd).

- The NBC/Wall Street Journal Poll claims that Obama is leading Romney 48% to 44%.

- The AP Poll has Obama leading Romney by the far more believable 47% to 46%.

HOWEVER, a quick check of the polling samples in both shows that both polls oversampled Democrats by 6%. And if you're wondering, these are "party identification" not "party registration" so, based on what we demonstrated empirically earlier this week, it should be an EVEN SAMPLE of Democrats and Republicans.

Translation: If these two polls were using honest samples, it can be presumed that Romney would be beating Obama by at least a couple points in both polls. More on these two polls tomorrow.

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