For decades we have seen polls about upcoming elections. The polls have generally been somewhat inaccurate to grossly inaccurate. Virtually every major poll predicted that Hillary Clinton was going to win easily in 2016 yet Donald Trump went on to win 57% of the electoral votes to Hillary’s 43%. That is a rout if not a landslide.
Ironically those polls helped Trump to win. Hillary was so reassured by the fake polls that she took it easy and stopped campaigning.
For 50 years polls have been slanted toward Democrats. In other words the polls are an extension of the media; they are designed to make Democrats look good.
This happens since most well-known polls are conducted by large and liberal media companies like CNN, ABC, CBS, New York Times, etc. These are ‘media polls’ and these media companies can get their polls to say anything they want depending on the questions asked, whom they ask, or even by the wording of the questions.
You can usually read the details about a poll at the end of each poll on its internet page. And therein lies the truth. The fine print may say something like “53% of respondents were Democrats, 41% were Republicans and 6% were Independents”. That is obviously going to bias the poll in favor of Democrats, as intended.
Here is the fine print on one CBS poll about immigration:
An oversample of African Americans was also conducted for this poll, for a total of 192 interviews among this group.
Why were blacks oversampled?
Answer: To slant the poll, that’s why.
ABC News’ Polling Methodology and Standards stated:
As of April 2013, Spanish-language interviewing was added to full-length ABC/Post polls for respondents who indicate a preference to be interviewed in Spanish.
Spanish speakers, particularly those that don’t speak any English, generally vote Democrat. See the implicit bias?
Polls may interview “all voters” or “registered voters” or “likely voters”. It is very important to note the differences. “Likely voters” would ostensibly produce the most accurate results since it eliminates most of the people who may not even show up to vote. So if you see a poll of “all voters” or “registered voters” then it is going to be even more inaccurate than other polls.
There also are polls within the polls, what are called ‘internals’. For instance after the main part of the poll states something like “governor Jones leads 55% to 45% among likely votes in the upcoming election” there are other ‘internal’ parts of the poll that ask secondary questions that often tell a whole different story like “66% of voters said that they do not personally like governor Jones and wish that there were another choice”.
Therefore it is always important to read polls carefully and look over all aspects, including the ‘internals’. But that generally is not possible since we learn about most polls through single mentions in news stories with no link to the poll’s original page. In many cases the ‘internals’ are not even reported.
‘Media polls’ are designed not only to make Democrats look good but crucially to give the company that commissions the poll – like CNN and any other media outlets that read it – something to discuss on its broadcasts, i.e., how much Americans love Democrats and hate Republicans and conservatives.
It is amusing to watch videos of commentators like Rachel Maddow on MSNBC giddily reporting on media polls before the 2016 election that showed Trump possibly losing even conservative states like South Carolina and Kansas (he won both by significant margins).
On the other hand there are polls that strive for accuracy. There are two major polls that have been pretty accurate or very accurate over the last decade – Zogby and Rasmussen. They strive to be accurate because they are not associated with a news outlet that wants a pre-determined outcome. They want to be known for being correct. Rasmussen especially has a good reputation and is respected.
Meanwhile here is the famous Gallup poll in the Summer of 2016 as reported on the Politico website:
In the wake of the Republican and Democratic national conventions, voters are more likely to support Hillary Clinton than Donald Trump, according to a Gallup poll released Monday.
While 36 percent of adults are more likely to support Trump coming out of the GOP’s four-day event, 51 percent are less likely to vote for the real estate mogul after it. The minus-15 net rating is the worst mark for the Republican nominee coming out of the party’s convention since Gallup began asking the question in 1984…
In other words Gallup was all wrong like virtually all of the other polls. But Gallup is no longer the powerhouse poll that it once was. Gallup is like the McDonald’s of polls – it is very famous but not very nourishing.
Rasmussen has been reporting recently that president Trump’s approval rating is around 45% to 50%, and that it is higher than Obama’s Rasmussen rating at this point in his presidency. Considering that Trump gets 92% negative media coverage, Trump’s Rasmussen numbers are amazing. This means that Americans increasingly are not being swayed by polls and by the Trump-hater media.
And considering that Obama was easily re-elected, the Rasmussen number should send shudders up the spines of Democrats.
Meanwhile most ‘media polls’ put Trump approval numbers in the high 30s or low 40s. See the bias? They start out hating Trump and make their polls look like most Americans do too.
So if you are worried about Trump’s poll numbers, don’t.
Virtually every major poll in the Summer of 1980 showed that conservative Republican presidential challenger Ronald Reagan was far behind sitting Democrat president Jimmy Carter even after Carter’s disastrous first term.
Reagan was being treated like a joke by the media, just like Trump. By election day the polls were much tighter. Then when the votes were finally counted Reagan won 44 states and 90% of the electoral votes.
This happened because most polls are slanted to Democrats to start with, but also are naturally biased to the incumbent. In addition many voters don’t think seriously about the candidates until election day is near. And thus polls generally tighten as voting nears.
Therefore the most accurate poll would ostensibly be taken the day before the election, negating all of the earlier polls. But this is hardly true. Even “exit polls”, which are conducted on election day among citizens after they have voted and are reported in late afternoon/early evening, have proven to be highly unreliable. For instance one exit poll showed Trump and Hillary tied in Ohio but then Trump went on to win the state by 8 points.
Thus the best suggestion is to disregard most polls, including all ‘media polls’. This is why the polls from late 2017 predicting a ‘blue wave’ Democrat victory in the November 2018 elections were not taken seriously by any knowledgeable pundits like Nikitas3.com. It now appears that there may in fact be a ‘red wave’… but we will not know until the votes are counted.
Interestingly Ronald Reagan was re-elected in 1984 with 49 electoral states out of 50 and 97.6% of the electoral vote. This came after four years of anti-Reagan slander from the media. Watch for the same with Trump. Nikitas3.com predicts that he will be re-elected easily in 2020.
You would think that Americans would be wary of polls after decades of failure, yet week after week, month after month the polls come out. Nikitas3.com is certain, however, that fewer and fewer Americans are believing polls or paying attention to them. Still these polls are posted as a matter of course just like Fake News is posted in order to continue to further the narrative that everyone loves Democrats.
Today we have a new phenomenon. The media have so smeared president Trump that millions of people will not say out loud or to a pollster that they support him. That is one reason that the 2016 polls showed Trump losing badly. So we must always beware of the ‘hidden vote’ that does not show up in polls. This vote always favors Republicans.
Republicans and conservatives are much less likely to respond to polls in the first place. This leads to more inaccuracy and bias. We conservatives simply don’t like talking about politics in person to pollsters after we have voted, or sitting through a long phone poll punching buttons. It is an intrusion on our time. As soon as we hear the word CNN, we hang up or walk away.
Democrats and liberals, on the other hand, love to be polled. They cannot stop letting everyone know what their opinion is. So there are many subtle ways that polls can be biased toward Democrats.
Thus when you see a poll about president Trump the Nikitas3.com rule of thumb is to add 5 to 15 points to that poll (depending on which poll) to show how president Trump is really doing.
One of the funniest stories about polls occurred in 2004. Exit polls taken in crucial Ohio said that Democrat presidential challenger John Kerry was going to win the electoral votes in the state of Ohio and thus would win the presidency, taking the White House away from incumbent Republican George W. Bush.
But then after the actual votes were counted Kerry lost Ohio and the election. Yet the kooks on the left claimed that the exit polls were right and that the actual votes did not matter(!) And that Kerry should be president. No kidding… To this day many left-wing nuts think that this is true.
One of the most famous photos in American political history was Democrat president Harry Truman holding up a copy of the Chicago Daily Tribune on November 3, 1948, the day after he won re-election. He had a big smile on his face. The paper had been printed in anticipation of Republican John Dewey winning, according to what the polls had predicted. The headline shouted ‘Dewey Defeats Truman’. So the inaccuracy and bias of the media and their polling friends is nothing new.