Aug
01
2012

#rsrh Today’s Quinnipac University poll.

A helpful suggestion for Quinnipac University: there was something weird – and, worse, apparently inconsistent – going on with its last round of state-level polling.  Take a look at this chart:

Q-Poll Actual
M O Diff M O Diff Shift
Florida 40 53 -13 48 51 -3 -10
Ohio 38 53 -15 47 52 -5 -10
Pennsylvania 40 54 -14 44 55 -11 -3

(Originally noticed by @NathanWurtzel) Key: M is McCain, O is Obama.  The above compares the difference between the ratio of McCain/Obama voters in Quinnipac’s latest poll (which had Obama by six in Ohio and Florida, and by eleven in Pennsylvania) by the actual ratio of McCain/Obama voters from 2008.  As you can see… yes, Quinnipac at least found Obama voters.  But it wasn’t finding McCain voters in Florida and Ohio; and while I take Sean Trende’s point that people tend to ‘forget’ that they voted for the loser I have to note that they apparently didn’t forget in Pennsylvania. I would also suggest that the fact that Ohio and Pennsylvania flipped its state government (including governorships) to the GOP in 2010, while Florida increased its Republican majorities, suggests that the electorate in none of those states has gotten more Democratic in the last four years. 

To sum up: while I’m not quite as cranky about the oopsies going on here as I was when I first woke up* there’s still a weird set of disconnects going on here between the results, what we know, and what we think that we know.  I don’t know why they got closest in Pennsylvania, but whatever Quinnipac was doing there either didn’t get done in the other two states, or it didn’t actually work.  And I know that the aforementioned Sean Trende – a smart guy who’s training up to take over the Mentat position currently being held by Michael Barone – is probably writing an article right now that the Q-poll should be looked at in terms of ideological leanings, which apparently a quite bit closer.  Here’s the thing, though: the questions we ask before the election usually imply at least three ‘real’ answers, while the election itself typically imposes a choice of only two.

Ah, political poll analysis.  Haruspication without the entrails.

Moe Lane

*You should have seen the first version of this article – no, wait, there’s a reason for that.

9 Comments

  • Aruges says:

    So, assuming a better reweight, what do these polls tell us? O up a bit or O about the same? R down a bit or R about the same?

  • Michael says:

    Moe with all due respect even Rasmussen has the split at 34.5 Republican and 33 Dem. This poll is a joke and there is no way on earth that Obama will do better in Florida then in 2008 or the same in Ohio. Plus 9 in Florida and Plus 8 in Ohio is a joke. Obama won Florida by 3 and Ohio by 4.6 in BANNER YEARS!! That does not exist now at all. As Dick Morris pointed out when you look at the percentages in Gallup and others on the Economy that is where the split will be. In other words, Obama is under Romney from 6 to 12 points on the Economy. As Dick mentioned, people do not say This Guy is Better on the Economy and then turn around and vote for the Guy that said is Worse for Economy. EXACTLY!!! Q-Poll has become another left wing outfit. I am sorry I live in Florida and Obama is not popular here at all…his approval is at 45 percent. CBS/NYT/Q-P…know the most important MENTAL number is 50 percent. I will leave you with this….in the Q-Poll there is a 31 percent Gender Gap. Now we know single women support Obama…but married women usually break for Romney. So how does Q-Poll come up with 31 percent Gender Gap that no other poll does? Maybe because they DELIBERATELY oversampled Dems and Single Women? As well, the Q-Poll finds that TAXING THE WEALTHY is very popular in all three states…YET GALLUP just released their poll that showed TAXING THE WEALTHY the LEAST IMPORTANT QUALITY that mattered to voters?? Come on Moe…do a better analysis!! This poll is garbage cripe even Obama Camp came out and called it biased this morning!! WHY? Because their internals show nothing of the sort…hence need Bill Clinton??

  • Michael says:

    Argus….what is tells you is that CBS/NYT and Q-Poll did what they needed to get Obama to 50 percent because of the mental note!! He has been unable to break the 46 percent range. So they manipulated the numbers…just look at the Gender Gap alone??? And they have Obama doing better than in 2008…NOW WHO WOULD BELIEVE THAT? Just look at Gallup or Rasmussen and you can see this is a Poll designed to mislead and create Buzz. The average voter does not look at internals just the HEADLINE! CBS knows this. The problem….even Obama campaign about 45 minutes ago said this poll was bad and biased…now why would they say that?? One….their internals do not show that and second…it could hurt Obama’s turnout. A TRUE POLLSTER knows Obama will NOT better in 2012 then 2008. There is not one poll that shows Obama doing well on the Economy and THAT ALWAYS decides in the end. Plus look at the sampling….the split on partisan is about even right now…yet Q-Poll went plus 9 in Florida for Dems and plus 8 in Ohio…not think in 2008 he won Florida by 3 and Ohio by 4.6…DO YOU plus 9 or plus 8?? Where is the Enthusiasm??? GOP by double digits!! Check last elections where have the Dems done well??? Q-Poll is junk and they missed the mark BIG TIME!! But the HEADLINE was what they wanted!

  • Scott says:

    Why are you assuming they got PA right?

    • Moe_Lane says:

      Scott: it’s more like my objections for OH & FL don’t apply for PA. the dirty truth of the matter here is that polls at this stage are mostly there to give 95% of political pundits something to do. I’m not excluding myself from this, by the way. 🙂

  • Michael says:

    Not sure who called you evil…but grow up Moe…act like a man and take the heat for a bad analysis. If not stop tweeting Einstein like you are in the know!! You stunk on your analysis and ignored the major problems with a junk poll…not not evil but dropped the ball…just because you have dairy on RedState makes you no more informed when you overt facts than anyone else. Q-Poll was a joke!

    • Moe_Lane says:

      Annnnnd thanks for stopping by, Michael.

      • Moe_Lane says:

        I suppose that a general reminder is in order. I moderate comments here with a capricious, yet heavy hand and a merry heart; I have expectations of guests; and I have been doing this long enough to gleefully know that any outrage sparked by the practical application of the first two clauses of this sentence will have absolutely no effect on my reputation whatsoever. Except to boost traffic, apparently.

        Most of you have not been warned, but only because most of you already know this already and can somehow manage to comment here without being jackasses*.

        Moe Lane

        *Yes, yes, except for you.

  • Doug says:

    I saw this poll on the local news this morning (6ABC out of Philly)… you’d think Obama won’t even break a sweat in winning this election. I know the media aren’t stupid and they are here to shape opinion, not to report it. But its not going to work this time around and Obama supporters who only pay casual attention are going to be in for a rude awakening. Far be it from me to get upset at the media over that.

    On The PA (non)discrepancy, I am cautiously optimistic after the state legislature turned red but…. geez we haven’t voted for a republican president since 1988 (Ok, Clinton, but Al Gore and John Kerry???).

    I am also liking the historic trend that presidents who lose support during their first term don’t get reelected.

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