The Other McCain

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Ohio Voters Are Not Stupid, the Polls Are Mostly Bulls**t and Tim Ryan Is Losing

Posted on | October 12, 2022 | Comments Off on Ohio Voters Are Not Stupid, the Polls Are Mostly Bulls**t and Tim Ryan Is Losing

There was a debate Monday in the Ohio Senate race, which isn’t really a race, because Democratic Rep. Tim Ryan is going to lose, badly. The only suspense is the exact size of J.D. Vance’s winning margin.

Let’s be clear about one basic fact: Ohio is a Republican state.

There was a time, as recently as 2012, when the general popularity of Barack Obama (and the general unpopularity of Mitt Romney) made it seem that Ohio was a “swing” state. That time is now over, and it’s been over for long enough that the national media can no longer deny it.

In 2016, Donald Trump beat Hillary Clinton in Ohio by an eight-point margin (51% to 43%, about 450,000 votes) and pundits were shocked. Obama had carried Ohio twice, by a three-point margin in 2012 against Romney, and by more than four points against John McCain in 2008. Even during the otherwise successful GOP election years of 2000 and 2004, Ohio had been “too close to call” late into Election Night both years, with Bush squeaking past Al Gore by a margin of about 160,000 voters in 2000 and edging John Kerry by less than 120,000 votes in 2004. Yet here was the endlessly “controversial” Trump not only beating Hillary in Ohio, but beating her by the biggest margin in recent history.

Part of the shock for the liberal media in 2016 was that polls in Ohio (like everywhere else) had so completely failed in their predictive capacity. As late as the Sunday before Election Day 2016, the Columbus Dispatch poll had Hillary leading 48% to 47%, and this was not even the worst Ohio poll in 2016. A month before the election, Monmouth had Hillary leading Trump by 2 points, and the CBS/YouGov poll had Hillary up by 4 points.

I repeat: Trump beat Hillary in Ohio by 8 points in 2016, and you might think such gross polling blunders might have caused pollsters to correct their methodology over the next four years. If you thought so, however, you would be wrong, because the pollster blew Ohio even worse in 2020!

Well do I remember being at my mother-in-law’s house in rural Ohio in late October 2020, in a county where Trump signs proliferated and there was scarcely a Biden sign to be seen, and trying to reconcile what I was seeing with my own eyes with the poll numbers I kept seeing:

Anyone can look at the results from 2016 and see that Trump racked up majorities of 2 to 1 or more in this part of Ohio — 72 percent in Morrow County, 71 percent in Crawford County, 67 percent in Knox County, 66 percent in Richland County, 64 percent in Marion County. In fact, Trump won 80 of Ohio’s 88 counties four years ago, defeating Hillary Clinton by an eight-point margin statewide.
If you believe the polls, Joe Biden is neck-and-neck with Trump in Ohio. Three recent polls (New York Times, Quinnipiac, Rasmussen) showed Biden with a one-point lead, and the current RealClearPolitics average of Ohio polls has Trump ahead with a margin of less than 1 percentage point. But nobody believes the polls, especially when the numbers are starkly contradicted by on-the-ground evidence like the proliferation of roadside Trump signs. . . .

Read the rest of that American Spectator column from October 2020, in case you’ve forgotten how dreadfully wrong about Ohio most pollsters were. Once again, Trump racked up an eight-point margin in the Buckeye State, stomping Biden in Ohio like Godzilla stomped Tokyo.

Will they never learn their lesson? Apparently not. On Tuesday, Instapundit linked to a Townhall article about Monday’s Ohio debate, where Ryan got completely owned by Vance:

In seeking to emphasize his claim that Vance does not support exceptions on abortion, Ryan engaged in a particular display of fear-mongering when it comes to the tragedy of rape victims and complications in pregnancy as part of “the chaos that we’re having now.”
Ryan went on to claim that “we read at least a couple of articles every week, of young people, underage girls who have been raped, or women who have had, uh, significant problems with their pregnancy, not be able to get help in the state. They gotta go to Indiana, they gotta go to Illinois, and that’s not good enough for JD Vance, he supports a national abortion ban, in which he wants women to have to get a passport and have to go to Canada.” The congressman then called for “some moderation on this issue” before painting his opponent as an “extremist,” something he would do throughout the night. . . .
Where [Vance] really hit back against Ryan, though, was by reminding that the alleged criminal in the case of a 10-year-old girl who was raped and became pregnant as a result, was here illegally.
“But let’s talk about that case,” Vance mentioned. “Because why was a 10-year-old girl raped in our community, raped in our state in the first place? The thing the media and Congressman Ryan, they talk about this all the time, the thing they never mention is that poor girl was raped by an illegal alien, somebody that should’ve never been in this state in the first place.” Vance then turned towards Ryan to decry how “you voted so many times against border wall funding, so many times for amnesty, Tim. If you had done your job, she’d never have been raped in the first place.” As the buzzer rang to call time, Vance called on Ryan to “do your job on border security, don’t lecture me on positions I don’t actually have.”

Vance’s demeanor throughout that debate exuded calm strength, whereas Ryan looked weak and desperate, but then at the end of the Townhall article I caught this:

The race is considered to favor Vance, with forecasters rating it as “Lean Republican” or “Likely Republican.” Vance has a +1.4 lead in the polls, according to RealClearPolitics

What part of “the polls are all bullshit” do I have to explain here?

Ohioans, who voted against Joe Biden by an eight-point margin, have had to suffer through ruinous inflation and other disastrous consequences of Biden’s policies, and don’t you think they’re pissed off about it? Don’t you think Ohio voters are smart enough to see through Ryan’s phony “moderate” stance? And yet what are these poll numbers?

In September, Siena College had Ryan leading 46% to 43% — in a state that went for Trump by eight points? Are you freaking kidding me?

Well, guess what, boys and girls? That’s right — in October 2020, Sienna College did an Ohio poll for the New York Times and had Biden winning 45% to 44%. So if we consider that they missed by nine points in 2020, and they’ve got Ryan leading by three now, then Vance should win by six points. Except I think he’ll win by a much wider margin than that. The big question about Ohio is whether Vance will win by 10 points or more.

Certainly, Ryan deserves to lose by that much. Democrats seem to think the abortion issue is going to deliver them a midterm miracle, but unless they can somehow prove that J.D. Vance paid for Herschel Walker’s girlfriend’s abortion — c’mon, Democrats are really desperate — I don’t think Republicans need to sweat Ohio this year. Or 2024, either.

UPDATE: Welcome, Instapundit readers!



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