Poll-itics — no that’s not a typo.
To add to our confusion about all the primaries and caucuses, we’ve got a flood of polls drowning us in numbers. Yes, we’re besieged by poll-itics.
Like: the NY Times and CBS News poll; the Gallup poll; the Los Angeles Times poll; the Marist Institute poll; the Quinninpiac University poll; the USA Today/CNN/Gallup poll; the Washington Post/ABC News poll; NBC 10 Survey USA News poll; and, oh, the Pew Poll.
Now, that’s not all. There are many companies in the business of polling — on all kinds of subjects. Currently a lot of these companies are, naturally, conducting polls wherever the primaries will next be held.
On the web, you can find SurveyUSA (surveyusa.com); Real Clear Politics; Strategic Vision, pollster.com; Datamax; and and others.
If you're as confused as I am by all these polls, you may be more confused when you discover that, according to NewScientist.com, the polls have often been wrong or just failed to agree with one another.
Says NewScientist.com, “Polling firms don’t simply report the voting intentions of the sample of people they interview. They adjust the figures to try to reflect the preferences of those who are actually likely to vote.”
But the way they adjust the figures isn’t uniform. And the American Association for Public Opinion Research has set up a committee to investigate, asking the polling companies to reveal their models — which they don’t want to do.
For example, according to the U.S. Census, 12.7 percent of the nation is “black.” But, it's unclear whether the 2,274,000 interracial couples are included.
Without any clear source, it’s been published that blue-collar working men account for a quarter of the “electorate.”
The two Democratic front runners are heavily courting those voters.
What’s a “blue-collar working man?” The definition for a “BCWM” seems to be based on: He didn’t go to college; he works in some kind of manufacturing or technical job; and he makes less than $50,000 a year.
By the way, when you visit these polling services, you’ll find they offer the results on all sorts of polls.
SurveyUSA’s site (surveyusa.com) is more productive, but then, its motto is “America’s Pollster.” Right now it has a story on an “Unpopularity” rating — obtained by subtracting disapproval from approval. Yes, the president is on the minus side. But you don't have to depend on surveyusa.com.
Go to PollingReport.com and you'll find the president heavily on the minus side in many, many polls.
Let’s hope that the next president — whoever he/she is — will produce positive approval ratings — with the help of Americans of both parties and those in the minority.
Chelle Delaney is associate publisher of the Quay County Sun. she can be reached by emailing email@example.com or calling 461-1952.