The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

To Repeat: Beware of Polls!

Posted on | October 25, 2010 | 5 Comments

Sunday morning, I noted Donald Douglas’s dissection of an L.A. Times poll that appears skewed toward Democrats.  Now, Tina Hemond gets inside the numbers in last week’s poll that showed Barney Frank leading by 12 points over Sean Bielat and argues that, in fact, the race in MA-4 is a statistical dead heat.

Of course, we have obvious incentives to discount polls unfavorable to Republicans, but I would also beware of polls that show Republicans winning. Polls are not campaigns and polls don’t win elections. Any poll can be wrong and, especially in the home stretch of a campaign — eight days to go! — you can’t let polls tell you what to think. To repeat what I said last week:

I only want to see poll numbers if the numbers tell me that a Republican underdog is gaining ground on a supposedly “safe” Democratic incumbent, or if the numbers confirm that a vulnerable Democrat is on his way to well-deserved defeat.
Everything else is just a damned distraction from the fight at this point in the campaign, I’m as tired of overconfident Pollyannas as I am of Eeyore worrywarts.

Stop telling me about damned polls!


5 Responses to “To Repeat: Beware of Polls!”

  1. MrPaulRevere
    October 25th, 2010 @ 2:26 am

    Poll results are used almost exclusively by leftist out fits such as Newsweek to drive a narrative home to a malleable public, i.e. Carla Fiorina is losing, so why vote for her? The narrative comes first followed by a poll that backs the narrative. This is ethical corruption on steroids. Hopefully you and Breitbart can help clean up this mess Mr. McCain. I find it to be profoundly dishonest.