When I see people, and particularly conservatives, discussing why one poll is better than another, I see the sample pool frequently cited as a reason for favoring one or another. Specifically, some poll watchers insist that any poll not filtered for likely voters, instead of just registered voters or even adults, is not useful in a political context.
The dirty secret is that not all likely voters are created equal. Every pollster has his own secret sauce, and we have to be careful when trusting that kind of filtering. It might not be what we expect.
Rasmussen Reports has a new Nevada Senate poll out, and the results are looking terrible for Harry Reid. The Democrat is looking likely to be the second consecutive incumbent floor leader for his party to be voted out of office.
Conventional wisdom says incumbents below 50 are vulnerable. Well, two of the three Republicans running to replace him are now above 50, and the third is at 49.
USC and the LA Times polled some of the major California statewide races. The results, provided by pollsters Greenberg Quinlan Rosner and American Viewpoint, seem generally in line with what we’ve seen so far: Campbell and Fiorina are in a close primary race, lagged by DeVore. Boxer can’t reach 50. Whitman cruises in the primary.
The big news to my eye is that Jerry Brown has fallen behind.
It’s late; I spent a lot of time preparing my nationwide modeling software, but here’s a quick look at the Arkansas Senate race, per Rasmussen. It’s a mess.
Rasmussen Reports has a new one on the Ohio Governor’s race. Kasich 46, Strickland 45, MoE 4.5. 54% chance Kasich is ahead according to my model, down from the 80s a couple of weeks ago.
This is more consistent with the previous trend and seems to confirm the RealClearPolitics theory that Quinnipiac has a few points of bias toward the Democrats in Ohio polling.
In looking at recent polling, I said I needed more data before I could write off Quinnipiac’s results as meaningless. Real Clear Politics has much more data to look at than I have, thanks to having been doing this for much longer, and they see a trend in Quinnipiac’s Ohio polling that leans toward the Democrats in every race in that state.
Food for thought, to be sure.
I know my model doesn’t handle multi-way races, but I thought this poll was fascinating. 21st Century Trending polled likely primary voters and caucus goers in 30 states, and found some novel results for the 2012 election.
Quinnipiac University released a new poll on the Ohio Governor’s race that has caused a stir. It shows Governor Ted Strickland, Democrat, ahead of former Congressman John Kasich, Republican, while previous polling showed the reverse.
The swing is large at first glance. Should Ohio Democrats be excited? Should Ohio Republicans panic? Let’s unpack this.
Also by request I’ve taken a look at the Florida special election coming up next month for District 19, filling in the seat vacated by Robert Wexler.
Sadly I can find no polling for this (special) general election race. Given that Wexler’s closest race was his first one in 1996 when he beat the Republican 66-34, and additionally this is in the part of the state most friendly to Democrats, pollsters just don’t expect this race to be close.
By request I’ve looked up the race in Indiana’s 9th District, which appears like it’s going to be a fourth rematch between former Rep. Mike Sodrel and Rep. Baron Hill. Hill voted for the PPACA, so national Republicans are sure to target him in this usually-Republican state that barely went for President Obama in 2008.