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Tuesday, November 6, 2007
posted by Jeff Fuller | 12:25 AM | permalink
OK, "conspiracy" is probably too strong. However, consider the following figures in early state polling courtesy of Real Clear Politics' and Pollster.com's 2008 Polling sites (other resources used: Electoral Votes from FEC website; Primary calendar from About.com):

Iowa--Jan 3rd (7 electoral votes) has been polled:
  • 9 times in the last 7 weeks.
  • 27 times in the last 6 months-- 4.5X/mo
  • Romney leads RCP average by 14%
Wyoming--Jan 5th (3 electoral votes--only a fraction of state's primary delegates up for grabs on this date though):
  • No polling that I could find
  • Conventional wisdom is that Romney will win here solidly (he just got 61% of vote in a straw poll last weekend)
New Hampshire--Jan 8th (4 electoral votes) has been polled:
  • 10 times in the last 7 weeks.
  • 27 times in the last 6 months-- 4.5X/mo.
  • Romney leads RCP average by 8%
Nevada--Jan 12th (5 electoral votes) has been polled:
  • 2 times in the last 7 weeks.
  • 6 times in the last 6 months--1X/mo.
  • No RCP average calculated . . . but Romney leads Rudy by 1% over last 6 polls (though many expect Romney to do much better in the caucus format than Rudy)
Michigan--Jan 15th (17 electoral votes) has been polled:
  • 2 times in the last 7 weeks.
  • 7 times in the last 6 months--1.2X/mo.
  • Romney leads RCP average by 5%
South Carolina--Jan 19th (8 electoral votes) has been polled:
  • 6 times in the last 7 weeks.
  • 19 times in the last 6 months-- 3.2X/mo.
  • Statistically a 3 way tie for first (Romney,Rudy, Fred)
Florida--Jan 29th (27 electoral votes) has been polled:
  • 11 times in the last 7 weeks.
  • 27 times in the last 6 months-- 4.5X/mo.
  • Rudy leads RCP average by 11%

Some observations:
  1. The traditional "Big Three" early states (IA, NH, SC) have a long history of being frequently polled and this remains the case.
  2. MI and FL seem like they should be polled similarly to me (the two largest states prior to Feb 5th). However, where Romney leads and is expected to win there is a paucity of polls but where Rudy leads and is expected to win there's over a poll per week (and nearly two per week over the last 7 weeks)
  3. There seems to be a polling firm "blind spot" to WY (completely) and Nevada (relatively) when these are two of the first 4 contests . . . and ("coincidentally"???) where Romney is leading polls or expected to win.

Now, moving on to Feb 5th ("Tsunami Tuesday") some of the polling trends border upon comical. Here are all the states going that date:
Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado (caucuses), Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Illinois, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, New York, North Dakota (caucuses), Oklahoma, Tennessee, Utah

New Jersey (15 electoral votes) has been polled:
  • 5 times in the last 7 weeks.
  • 12 times in the last 6 months-- 2X/mo.
  • Rudy leads by OVER 40%!!.
WHY IS NJ BEING POLLED MORE THAN MICHIGAN?!?!? Rudy's never led by less than 32% in any of these copious NJ polls. Who's wasting all this money polling a state that's never been close when it's just another Feb 5th state? Something's fishy there.

California (51 electoral votes) has been polled:
  • 5 times in the last 7 weeks.
  • 15 times in the last 6 months--2.5X/mo.
  • Rudy leads RCP average by 19%
CA is the biggest prize and so I see why it's polled frequently

Moving on:

Pennsylvania--April 11th (YES, that's over 2 months AFTER Tsunami Tues!; 21 electoral votes) has been polled:
  • 3 times in the last 7 weeks.
  • 11 times in the last 6 months-- ~2X/mo.
  • Rudy leading by about 22%
Again, why in the world is this state being polled more than MI!? Don't you think the results of the early states and the results of Tsunami Tuesday just might have a little effect on how Penn votes on April 11th? That's called wasted money.

Conclusions/Questions:
So, is this ample evidence that there is an over-abundance and over-representation of polls for states where Rudy leads strongly? Or is there an ignoring of non-traditional early states where Romney is leading? Is this an attempt to get repeated positive news/headlines for Rudy and/or to downplay/diminish Mitt's potential?

Why the huge disparity between MI and FL? Why more NJ and Penn polls than MI? Why is NV being largely ignored? Am I missing something? Am I doomed to become a "conspiracy theorist?"

Thoughts? Comments?

Jeff Fuller
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1 Comments:


I think it's quite obviously bias, Jeff. I actually think the numbers you have shown are quite tell-tale of the MSM's rejection of Mitt, based largely on his beliefs. Truly, a very fascinating post!




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