Pollster.com

October 12, 2008 - October 18, 2008

 

WV: McCain 50, Obama 42 (PPP-10/16-17)

Topics: PHome

Public Policy Polling (D)
10/16-17/08; 1,223 LV, 2.8%
Mode: IVR

West Virginia
McCain 50, Obama 42


ME: Obama 55, McCain 38 (DailyKos-10/14-15)

Topics: PHome

DailyKos.con (D) / Research 2000
10/14-15/08; 600 LV, 4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

Maine
Obama 55, McCain 38
Sen: Collins (R-i) 53, Allen (D) 40


Franklin on Race and Obama


Our own Charles Franklin makes a prominent appearance in Ben Smith's Politico piece on some "unlikely" supporters of Barack Obama: "white voters with negative views of African-Americans." The key paragraphs:

“What you see is it’s perfectly possible to hold a negative view of at least one aspect of African-Americans and yet simultaneously prefer Obama,” said Charles Franklin, a political scientist at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. “Racial feelings are not as cut and dried — not as black and white — as people often say.”

Franklin explored those contradictions in a large, national survey taken in mid-September, when the Illinois Democratic senator's rival, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), led in many polls and the nation’s economic woes had not yet produced a deep crisis. The poll asked voters whether they agreed with the statement that “African-Americans often use race as an excuse to justify wrongdoing." About a fifth of white voters said they “strongly agreed.” Yet among those who agreed, 23 percent said they’d be supporting Obama.

“This result is reasonable if you believe that race is not as monolithic an effect as we might easily assume,” Franklin said, noting that 22 percent of those who "strongly disagreed" said they'd be supporting McCain.


Daily Tracker Update

Topics: Daily Trackers

We now have all six of today's national daily tracking results, and the trend since Thursday (the last day in which virtually all interviews were completed before Wednesday night's debate) remains mixed. If we treat the Gallup "extended" likely voter model as their number of record, we have four surveys showing slight gains for McCain (Gallup, Daily Kos/Research2000, Diageo/Hotline and Reuters/Zogby), and two showing slight gains for Obama (Rasmussen and IBD/TIPP). The pattern is even less consistent if you choose to Gallup's registered voter model (one-point Obama gain),their "traditional" likely voter model (no change), or focus on all three. Either way, if the debates have caused a significant shift in vote preference, it is not yet big enough to be detected consistently by these tracking surveys.

081018 daily2.png

One interesting change, which may be purely coincidental. Since Thursday, these tracking polls got a little bit more consistent with each other, mostly due to a narrowing Obama margin on the Kos/Research 2000 poll and an expanding Obama margin on the IBD-TIPP poll. Make of this what you will.


US: Obama 47, McCain 40 (IBD/TIPP-10/13-17)

Topics: PHome

Investor's Business Daily(IBD)/TechnoMetrica Institute of Policy and Politics (TIPP)
10/13-17/08**
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 47, McCain 40

**Today's results appear on the TIPP website, but not the IBD site. We are assuming that the survey dates increment up by one from yesterday's release, which nvolved interviews with 872 likely voters and a margin of error of +/- 3.5%


NC: Obama 46, McCain 44 (DailyKos-10/14-15)

Topics: PHome

DailyKos.com (D) / Research 2000
10/14-15/08; 600 LV, 4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

North Carolina
Obama 46, McCain 44
Sen: Hagan (D) 49, Dole (R-i) 45
Gov: Perdue (D) 48, McCrory (R) 42


US: Obama 50, McCain 46 (Gallup 10/15-17)

Topics: PHome

Gallup Poll
10/15-17/08
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National

Registered Voters (n=2,796, 2%)
Obama 50, McCain 42

**Likely Voters-Expanded** (n=2,263 2,572, 2%)
Obama 50, McCain 46

Likely Voters-Traditional (n=2,572 2,263, 2%)
Obama 49, McCain 47


DailyKos: AK, OR (10/14-16)

Topics: PHome

DailyKos.com (D) / Research 2000
10/14-16/08; 600 LV, 4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

Alaska
McCain 57, Obama 38
Sen: Begich (D) 48, Stevens (R-i) 46
At-Large: Berkowitz (D) 50, Young (R-i) 44

Oregon (10/14-15)
Obama 53, McCain 38
Sen: Merkley (D) 47, Smith (R-i) 41


US: Obama 49, McCain 42 (Hotline 10/15-17)

Topics: PHome

Diageo/Hotline
10/15-17, 08; 797 LV 3.5%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 49, McCain 42


US: Obama 50, McCain 45 (Rasmussen 10/15-17)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen
10/15-17, 08; 3,000 LV 2%
Mode: IVR

National
Obama 50, McCain 45


US: Obama 50, McCain 43 (Daily Kos 10/15-17)

Topics: PHome

Daily Kos (D)/Research 2000
10/15-17,08; 1,100 LV 3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 50, McCain 43


US: Obama 48, McCain 44 (Zogby 10/15-17)

Topics: PHome

Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby
10/15-17, 08; 1,209 LV 2.9%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 48, McCain 44


Morning Status Update for 10/18

Topics: Status Update

On Friday we added 13 new statewide database, and these new surveys mostly confirm what we already knew. Most represent updates since September and show the same progress for the Democrats we have seen or the last few weeks. Three new surveys in Florida suggest that Obama's lead there may be narrowing. Another new survey in North Dakota indicates that the surprisingly close contest in North Dakota is not a mirage and the national polls suggest a slight uptick in support for McCain nationwide.

081018 new polls.png

We had three new surveys yesterday in all-important Florida from the Times Union and Sun Sentinel/Research 2000 (Obama +4), SurveyUSA (McCain +2) and Democratic polling firm Hamilton Campaigns (Obama +4). These new surveys narrowed Obama's Florida margin on our trend estimate to 4.2 points (49.1% to 44.9%), which represents a 2.6 point drop on the margin from the 6.8 point lead we saw earlier in the week.


Research 2000 released a new North Dakota survey yesterday sponsored by the left of center web-site Daily Kos, showing the presidential contest deadlocked, 45% to 45%. The three new surveys this week in North Dakota are the first since mid-September and one of only six released there since the conventions. The other two give Obama a very narrow lead. When we have only a handful of polls, as in North Dakota, our system defaults to a linear trend estimate (relatively straight lines rather than the curved loess regression trend. Since the new polls indicate a sharp change in the trend lines, each new poll confirms and extends that trend. In most cases, a linear trend line works best in these situations, but in this case it produces an odd quirk: Today's 3.6 point margin for Obama (44.9% to 41.3%) ends up being greater than Obama's 1.6% lead on the average of last three polls (44.6% to 43.0%).

Based on the three new polls, North Dakota certainly looks like a true toss-up, at least for the moment, but in this case our trend estimate likely overstates Obama's current standing there.

As of this writing, Obama's lead on the national trend is just under seven percentage points (although today's tracking surveys, which may be added by the time you read this, will likely change that margin as they usually do). However, we now have enough polls to showing a slight narrowing in the national margin.

Any change in the trend line, as of this writing, does not appear to reflect reactions to Wednesday's debate. Yesterday's new national tracking polls did include interviews conducted on Thursday night, but these represent just a third of the interviews for five of the trackers and a quarter for two more. Unlike my standard table above, the table below shows how yesterday's releases compare to those from the day before. The changes show no consistent pattern. Two showed slight movement to Obama, two showed slight movement to McCain, one showed no change and one (Gallup) showed either no change or a one point improvement for Obama, depending on which population you look at.

081018 trackers.png

If the debates produced a change in vote preference, it was too small to be detected by the first post-debate release of the new tracking polls. We will have a much better sense of any post-debate trends tomorrow, when five of the trackers release their first full samples collected after the debate.


PA: Obama 52, McCain 39 (Muhlenberg 10/13-17)

Topics: PHome

Muhlenberg College
10/13-10/17
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

Pennsylvania 593 LV, 4%
Obama 52, McCain 39


Friday Night "Outliers"


Ron Brownstein unveils a massive micro-subgroup analysis of twenty years worth of exit poll data in a National Journal cover story on the "hidden history of the American electorate." It includes detailed interactive charts -- see this example to see how 14 Hispanic subgroups voted since 1988.

Gallup gives Democrats a six-point lead on the generic congressional ballot and says debate gave the third debate to Obama.

Rasmussen's respondents also rate Obama the winner.

Anna Greenberg and David Walker review trends among women voters in battleground states

Nate Silver continues to fisk Drudge.

Michael McDonald adds an analysis of new registrants in Nevada and plots 200 years of voter turnout.

A single trader drove up the price of McCain "stock" on intrade - can a single respondent have that much influence on a survey?

Simon Rosenberg expects McCain to close strong.

Marc Ambinder points to the Gerber and Green study on the ineffectiveness of robo-persuasion calls.

John Sides reviews The Persuadable Voter , the new book on microtargetting and wedge issues by Sunshine Hillygus and Todd Shields, and posts a trove of Polisci links, including Erikson and Bartels predictions of an Obama victory and Holbrook's electoral college forecast.

And for those who missed it...

(And if CNN's finicky embedded video isn't working, try this link).


Rasmussen: CO, NV (10/16)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen
Mode: IVR

Colorado 700 LV, 4%
Obama 52, McCain 45
Sen: Udall (D) 51, Schaffer (R) 44

Nevada 700 LV, 4%
Obama 50, McCain 45


CA: Obama 59, McCain 35 (SurveyUSA-10/15-16)

Topics: PHome

SurveyUSA
10/15-16/08; 615 LV, 4%
Mode: IVR

California
Obama 59, McCain 35


More Cell Phone Data from Gallup

Topics: Cell Phones

In my column this week, I summarized some recent data provided by both the Pew Research Center and Gallup on the interviews both have been conducting this year via cell phone. Both pollsters have seen a similar pattern. With the interviews among "cell phone only" respondents (those who live in households without landline telephones) included, Obama does a point or two better, McCain does a point or two worse.

One of the more significant findings in this data was from Pew. They found big differences between 18-to-29-year-old voters with landline phone service an those reachable only by cell phone. The cell phone only younger voters favored Obama by a much bigger margin (62% to 27%, n=250) than the landline younger voters (52% to 39%, n=146). While those differences were just large enough to be statistically significant, the sample sizes involved are relatively small, so it is hard to be certain about the magnitude of the difference.

081017 pew cell phone.png

Curious, I asked Gallup's Jeff Jones if they could replicate the Pew table, and he kindly sent along the following data. You do not see differences by party identification. The ballot numbers show the same general pattern, but the differences are not as large as they appear on the Pew survey. Obama, runs better among the Gallup cell-phone only 18-to-29-year-olds (+28) than among those reachable by landline (+20). Those differences still appear to be statistically significant given the larger sample sizes.

081017 gallup cell phone.png

The bottom line? Gallup and Pew have produced data supporting the theory of a likely "cell phone effect" in Obama's favor that weighting by age may not eliminate. However, the Gallup data implies a smaller effect than Pew. Of course, without seeing a weighted comparison for all voters by Gallup (something they may not have time to produce until after the election), we won't know for sure.


WY: McCain 58, Obama 35 (DailyKos-10/14-16)

Topics: PHome

DailyKos.com (D) / Research 2000
10/14-16/08; 600 LV, 4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

Wyoming
McCain 58, Obama 35
Sen-A: Enzi (R-i) 61, Rothfuss (D) 34
Sen-B: Barasso (R-i) 57, Carter (D) 36
At-Large: Trauner (D) 44, Lummis (R) 43


MO: Obama 52, McCain 46 (Rasmussen-10/15)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen
10/15/08; 700 LV, 4%
Mode: IVR

Missouri
Obama 52, McCain 46
Gov: Nixon (D) 57, Hulshof (R) 38


ND: McCain 45, Obama 45 (DailyKos-10/14-15)

Topics: PHome

DailyKos.com (D) / Research 2000
10/14-15/08; 600 LV, 4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

North Dakota
McCain 45, Obama 45


FL: McCain 49, Obama 47 (SurveyUSA-10/16)

Topics: PHome

SurveyUSA
10/16/08; 553 LV, 4.3%
Mode: IVR

Florida
McCain 49, Obama 47


US: Obama 51, McCain 45 (Gallup-10/14-16)

Topics: PHome

Gallup Poll
10/14-16/08
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National

Registered Voters (2,805, 2%)
Obama 50, McCain 43

**Likely Voters-Expanded** (2,314, 2%)
Obama 51, mcCain 45

Likely Voters-Traditional (2,155, 2%)
Obama 49, McCain 47


MS: McCain 50, Obama 40 (DailyKos-10/14-15)

Topics: PHome

DailyKos.com (D) / Research 2000
10/14-15/08; 600 LV, 4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

Mississippi
McCain 50, Obama 40
Sen: Wicker (R-i) 47, Musgrove (D) 46


FL: Obama 49, McCain 45 (R2K-10/13-15)

Topics: PHome

Times-Union / South Florida Sun Sentinel /
Research 2000
10/13-15/08; 600 LV, 4%
Mode: Live telephone Interviews

Florida
Obama 49, McCain 45


TX: McCain 52, Obama 40 (DailyKos-10/14-15)

Topics: PHome

DailyKos.com (D) / Research 2000
10/14-15/08; 600 LV, 4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

Texas
McCain 52, Obama 40
Sen: Cornyn (R-i) 50, Noriega (D) 44, Adams (L) 2


PA: Obama 53, McCain 39 (Muhlenberg 10/12-16)

Topics: PHome

Muhlenberg College
10/12-10/16
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

Pennsylvania 602 LV, 4%
Obama 53, McCain 39


Bradley Effect on SNL

Topics: Bradley/Wilder , SNL

We probably shouldn't be surprised that SNL would offer its take on the polling controversy everyone else wants to talk about. Here, "Jesse Jackson" offers his views:


GA: McCain 49, Obama 43 (DailyKos-10/14-15)

Topics: PHome

DailyKos.com (D)/Research 2000
10/14-15/08; 600 LV, 4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

Georgia
McCain 49, Obama 43
Sen: Chambliss (R-i) 47, Martin (D) 45, Buckley (L) 5


US: Obama 50, McCain 40 (Hotline 10/14-16)

Topics: PHome

Diageo/Hotline
10/14-16, 08; 804 LV 3.5%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 50, McCain 40


US: Obama 50, McCain 46 (Rasmussen 10/14-16)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen
10/14-16, 08; 3,000 LV 2%
Mode: IVR

National
Obama 50, McCain 46


US: Obama 49, McCain 45 (GWU 10/12-16)

Topics: PHome

GWU/Battleground
Tarrance Group (R)/Lake Research (D)
10/12-16, 08; 1,000 LV 3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 49, McCain 45


Morning Status Update for 10/17


We logged 21 new statewide polls yesterday, including 9 of the controversial Zogby Interactive surveys conducted online using a non-random panel of Internet volunteers. The overall pattern of the new polls is roughly the same as we have seen in recent days. Most confirm the gains registered by the Democrats since September, although the net impact on our trend estimates over the last 24 hours is mostly negligible. The exception is Ohio where two new surveys, including one from Zogby, narrow our trend estimate enough to shift that state and its 20 electoral votes from lean Obama back to our toss-up category.

Most of these polls follow-up on previous surveys from the same pollster conducted in September or earlier, and as such, most confirm the recent gains by the Obama-Biden ticket. Only three of the the new surveys track results gathered earlier in October, two of those show a slight shift to Obama, one shows a slight shift to McCain.

081017 daily.png

Virtually all of the interviews in the national tracking surveys posted yesterday were conducted before the Wednesday night debate. Today's releases will be the first to indicate whether the debates made any noticeable dent in vote preference nationally. Please note that for the rolling-average tracking polls, the table above lists the previous non-overlapping sample for each pollster, not the release from the previous day.


081017 trends.png

The new surveys moved our trend estimates in both directions in the closer battleground states. In five states, Missouri, North Carolina, North Dakota and Virginia, the estimates shifted slightly in Obama's direction. In five states, Colorado, Florida Indiana, Nevada and Ohio, the estimates moved slightly in McCain's direction.

A new poll in North Dakota sponsored by a Democratic affliated union, only the second public poll released their in a month, confirms the very close result obtained by the The Forum there earlier this week and solidifies our surprising "toss-up" status for that state.

Two new surveys in Ohio were from Rasmussen (showing a 49% to 49% tie) and Zogby Interactive survey (showing McCain leading, 50% to 45). These narrow Obama's lead on our Ohio trend estimate by nearly two points, enough to shift Ohio back to the toss-up category. Our estimate shows Obama leading McCain by two and a half points (49.0% to 46.5%)

Ohio is the one state where -- for the moment at least -- our inclusion of the Zogby surveys affects the classification. If we use the "filter" tool on our charts to remove the Zogby surveys from the trend estimate (as in the modified chart above), Obama's lead widens by about a point (to 49.6% to 45.8%), which would have left Ohio in the lean Obama column.

All of which raises the question of how Internet panel surveys like Zogby's work and why we include them. The short version is that Zogby, like most companies doing survey research online draws, a sample from a non-random panel of volunteers that have agreed to complete surveys online. They then attempt to weight the completed interviews to match the demographics and partisanship of the electorate. (Interests disclosed: Pollster.com receives financial support from YouGov/Polimetrix, another company that conducts internet panel surveys).

Despite the hype on their website, the Zogby Interactive surveys have produced results of dubious accuracy. Following the 2006 elections, the Wall Street Journal's Carl Bialik found that Zogby's online surveys "missed by an average of 8.6 percentage points" in U.S. Senate races, "at least twice the average" of results from four other pollsters he examined, SurveyUSA, Rasmussen and Mason-Dixon. The Zogby Interactive surveys also rank second to last on Nate Silver's computations of "pollster introduced error," earning an error rate (5.73) more than double the average (1.97). Charles Franklin also noted some odd patterns in their national trial heat results in late 2007.

So why include them here? Our philosophy since launching Pollster.com two years ago has been to include all polls, good, bad and ugly. We do so partly to provide a reference and record of all polls, and partly because the loess regression trend lines usually resist the influence of "outlier" results from a single pollster (Charles Franklin discussed this issue at length here). And finally, we have worked hard to provide interactive charts that allow you to filter out individual pollsters to check for instances where one poll or one pollster may have a disproportionate impact on our perceptions of where the race stands.


US: Obama 52, McCain 42 (Daily Kos 10/14-16)

Topics: PHome

Daily Kos (D)/Research 2000
10/14-16, 08; 1,100 LV 3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 52, McCain 42


US: Obama 49, McCain 44 (Zogby 10/14-16)

Topics: PHome

Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby
10/14-16,08; 1,210 LV 2.9%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 49, McCain 44


Nightly "Outliers?"**


Nielsen says 56.5 million watched last night's debate.

Karl Rove uses Post/ABC data to claim that Obama hasn't "closed the sale" on qualifications.

Jon Cohen, Washington Post pollster, says Rove "exaggerates" doubts about Obama's experience compared with Bush in 2000.

Brian Schaffner considers Rove's claim that Obama is underachieving.  

Charles Franklin considers McCain's best path to 270.

Gallup looks at the demographic patterns of Obama's recent gains and sees some "tapering" in negativity on the economy.

Slate's Explainer ponders "what's with all the Quinnipiac polls?"

Sam Boyd digs deep into "dial testing."

Carl Bialik reports on a brand consulting firm that monitors and quantifies candidate "advocacy" in the comments sections of website (and says Obama leads there too).

Nate Silver has fun with Drudge.

PPP finds a West Virginia list sample.

Nancy Scola reports on a new deal among Democratic data gatherers (via Smith).

And a new right wing polling conspiracy theory to ponder (via Sullivan).

**The volume of polling related items on the "tubes" is much greater than usual, so I'll try to do this on-again feature on a more or less daily basis between now and November 4.

Also a self-promotion alert: I'll be on CNN tomorrow morning at about 7:24 a.m. Eastern Time. So tomorrow's morning update might be a little later than usual


Is Obama Underachieving?


"With a restive electorate, with an economy that's sort of chugging around, with a war in the background, at the end of eight years of Republican rule in the White House, Obama should be way ahead."
Karl Rove, Face the Nation, August 10th

The conventional wisdom put forth by political pundits is that Obama should be winning this election by huge margins. The argument is that with a weak economy and an unpopular president, the Democratic nominee should be "crushing" the Republican nominee and the fact that Obama hasn't had double-digit leads throughout means that there must be something wrong. But how well should the Democrat really be doing in this race? Is Obama really underachieving as much as most people assume?

To get a sense of whether Obama is underachieving, we first need to know how the Democrat should be doing in this election. This can be difficult to quantify, but one way of doing so is to borrow from political science models that are used to project presidential election outcomes. Each presidential election year, a handful of political scientists publish their predictions in PS: Political Science & Politics. Most of these models include at least some of the following: various measures of the status of the economy, an accounting for which party holds the White House (and how long they have been there), and the president's approval rating. This year, all but one model predicted a Democratic victory in the presidential race.

These models can provide us with some guidance on how well Obama should be performing in this race. After all, they are based on the same economic and political factors that pundits have used as evidence for their claims that Obama is underachieving. In the chart below, I show the percentage of the two-party vote that each model predicted the Democrat would win in this election. (I excluded 3 predictions that use polling data from earlier in the campaign as one of their predictors. Since a measure of Obama's support earlier in the race is included in the model, their predictions wouldn't provide good estimates of how the Democrat should be performing). The chart also includes the variables being used in each model to generate the predictions. The horizontal line indicates the share of the two-party support that Obama is currently winning in the Pollster.com national trend.

predictions.PNG

The predictions indicate that the Democratic nominee should win anywhere between 50.1% and 58.2% of the two-party vote. Currently, Obama is receiving 54% of the two-party support in the Pollster.com trend estimate. That places him right in the middle of the range of predictions. By the way, if you are keeping score, Alan Abramowitz's model is presently closest to the two-party breakdown in the national polling. His model generated this prediction based on the president's low approval rating, the second quarter GDP growth, and the fact that Republicans have controlled the White House for 8 years.

Despite the fact that pundits have claimed that Obama is not performing as well as he should be given the economic and political conditions, the models used by political scientists to predict election outcomes--models based on these very conditions--tell a different story. Obama is currently out-pacing the predictions made by some models and lagging only a few percentage points behind others. But his support does not stray more than 4.2% away from any of these predictions. Thus, there isn't much support here for the notion that Obama is greatly underachieving in this election. At least not at this point in the race.


Rasmussen: CT, NY, OH, OR (10/14)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen Reports
10/14; Mode: IVR

Connecticut 500 LV, 4.5%
Obama 56, McCain 39

New York 500 LV, 4.5%
Obama 57, McCain 37

Ohio 700 LV, 4%
Obama 49, McCain 49

Oregon 500 LV, 4.5%
Obama 54, McCain 41
Sen: Merkley (D) 47, Smith (R-i) 47


Getting to 270 for McCain


EvoteBarChart.png
(Click chart to see full size)

It takes 270 to win this game. McCain is behind in national polls, down 7.5 in our Pollster.com Trend Estimate. But as you know, this is a game won in the states. So what does it now take for McCain to eek out a 270-268 electoral vote win?

The chart above shows the states allocated to candidates based on my Political Arithmetik trend estimate. The classification of states is the same as Pollsters, but differ slightly in the order.

The states are ordered left to right according to the Obama minus McCain margin. Yellow states are classed as tossups but are allocated to candidates based on who is ahead in the trend, no matter how small that margin may be. The width of each state's block is proportional to the state's electoral vote.

With this classification, Obama has 364 electoral votes to McCain's 174.

So what would it take for McCain to come back at this point? Ohio and Florida, above all else.

Ohio and Florida are the largest states that are in Obama's row but still close. McCain led in both states in August and the first half of September. Without them, it is hopeless. With them, he still needs more, but they are the necessary conditions for a win.

Can he do it?  The trends in Ohio and Florida offer a small glimmer of hope. While most states have continued to move in Obama's direction (see PA, MI and WI), these two have leveled off, and in Ohio moved back in McCain's direction.

OhioTrend.png
FloridaTrend.png
No matter what, McCain has a long shot to get to 270. But The road has to go through Ohio and Florida and both states are looking better for him than any others he must win. What he is doing in Pennsylvania and Wisconsin is a mystery to me.


On Pizza and Politics

Topics: 7Eleven , Domino's

Politico's Ben Smith forwarded me this email (and the attached graphic) from one of his readers:

I've attached an image from an online poll that is from, of all places, the Domino's Pizza online ordering interface. After you place your order you can track it's progress, but you can also fill out a little political poll as a diversion. Your answers are then added into a national map (pictured) which has the unique crosstab of which sandwich is everyone's favorite. The funny thing is that percentage wise it's not too far off. I guess I should notify pollster.com.

081016 pizza.png

As he did. Obviously, the Domino's "survey" is not projective and intended for entertainment and marketing purposes only, but it certainly shows that Electoral Vote maps are getting pretty ubiquitous these days.

And I should have it, but as I was writing this item -- literally -- an email dropped into my inbox from a public relations firm representing Domino's sharing the latest round of results" from their "Pizza and Politics" poll, "which garnered 82,400 respondents in week two" (I pasted their press release on the jump for your amusement).

7-Election 2008.png

Yesterday, I also got FedEx delivery from the 7Eleven chain with 20 Obama and McCain paper cups, part of the 7Election 2008 promotion. These now adorn Eric's cubicle. Not that we could be bought with the gift of some paper cups, but I'm sure Eric would not complain if Domino's wanted to send over some lunch.

No, we don't take any of this seriously. It just makes us smile. It just means that the election is close and interest in what we do is soaring. As the legendary Jimmy Durante often once said, "everybody wants to get in on the act."

[Typos corrected, including errant reference to "Pizza Hut" -- brand marketing efforts obviously lost on me & thanks to RS]

Continue reading "On Pizza and Politics"


US: Obama 51, McCain 45 (Gallup-10/13-15)

Topics: PHome

Gallup Poll
10/13-15/08
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National

Registered Voters (2,786 RV, 2%):
Obama 49, McCain 43

Likely Voters-Expanded (2,312 LV, 2%):
Obama 51, McCain 45

Likely Voters-Traditional (2,143 LV, 2%):
Obama 49, McCain 47


Zogby: 11 States (10/9-13)

Topics: PHome

Zogby Interactive online surveys test McCain and Obama in eleven battleground states.


US: Obama 49, McCain 41 (Hotline 10/13-15)

Topics: PHome

Diageo/Hotline
10/13-15, 08; 817 LV 3.4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 49, McCain 41


MA: Obama 59, McCain 35 (SurveyUSA-9/13-14)

Topics: PHome

SurveyUSA
10/13-14/08; 624 LV, 3.9%
Mode: IVR

Massachusetts
Obama 59, McCain 35
Sen: Kerry (D) 59, Beatty (R) 29, Underwood (L) 5


US: Obama 50, McCain 44 (GWU 10/9, 10/12-15)

Topics: PHome

GWU/Battleground
Tarrance Group (R)/Lake Research (D)
10/9, 10/12-15, 08; 1,000 LV 3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 50, McCain 44


PA: Obama 53, McCain 37 (Muhlenberg-10/11-15)

Topics: PHome

Muhlenberg College
10/11-15/08; 595 LV, 4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

Pennsylvania
Obama 53, McCain 37


US: Obama 50, McCain 46 (Rasmussen 10/13-15)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen
10/13-15, 08; 3,000 LV 2%
Mode: IVR

National
Obama 50, McCain 46


US: Obama 52, McCain 41 (Daily Kos 10/13-15)

Topics: PHome

Daily Kos (D)/Research 2000
10/13-15, 08; 1,100 LV 3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 52, McCain 41


Morning Status Update for 10/16

Topics: Status Update

Before the debates (and the quick reaction surveys released late last night), the flood of new surveys continued, as we logged 22 new statewide polls yesterday, plus three new standalone national polls and the latest updates from the (now) seven daily national trackers. The pattern at the state level remained consistent with we have seen since mid-September. Of the 18 new surveys that track previous results from the same pollster, and 13 show net movement to Obama, 3 to McCain and 2 show no change. Only three of the statewide polls represent updates since early October, and all three show net shifts to the Obama-Biden ticket.


2008-10-16 daily new

Note for rolling-average tracking polls, that the first table lists the previous non-overlapping sample for each pollster, not the release from the previous day.

The new polls affect our statewide trend estimates in two ways. They nudged the estimates in Obama's direction in six states, including a 1.3 point shift in Virginia that increased the Democrats' margin there to just over five percentage points (51.0% to 45.9%), enough to move Virginia and its 13 electoral votes to the light blue "lean Democrat" category on our map.

Although only three states show movement in McCain's direction, those changes helped shift both Colorado and Florida back from dark blue "strong" to light blue "lean" Democrat status.


2008-10-16 daily


The current Obama margin on our national trend estimate has fluttered around over the last few days, but has remained somewhere between 7 and 9 points over last week. Keep in mind that while the forward "tail" of the trend line (a funny sounding term, but I'm not sure what else to call it) tends to jump around as we add new polls, but regression trend line smooths out as we move forward. Charles Franklin sent an update of his "national forces" chart late yesterday and it shows continuing movement over the last week to the Democrats on both the national trend and his mash-up of all state polls.

2008-10-16 natinal forces.jpg

A note on the "all state polls" trendline. Franklin makes no effort to adjust or weight the state poll numbers to create a nationally representative statistic. He simply calculates the Obama minus McCain margin for each new statewide poll and plots a regression trend line through those points. The closeness of the level of "all state polls" trend to the national trend line is mostly coincidental. Theoretically, the "all state" trend could go up or down if the statewide polls over any particular period happened to be mostly from red or mostly from blue states. For the most part, the polls distribute consistently and the national poll and state poll trends generally mirror each other closely and right now, both trends continue to favor the Democrats.


US: Obama 49, McCain 44 (Zogby 10/12-15)

Topics: PHome

Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby
10/12-15,08; 1,208 LV 2.9%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 49, McCain 44


Final Debate Reactions

Topics: Barack Obama , Debates , John McCain

The same networks that conducted "instant reaction" surveys two the first two debates are out with the results to tonight's debate.   Again, see my post from the first presidential debate for more detail on the methodologies used by each network. Here are the results just broadcast (with links to online reports when available):

CBS News once again recontacted uncommitted voters (638 in this case) who had been previously interviewed through the random sample Knowledge Networks Internet panel. The results:

  • Who won the debate? 53% say Obama, 22% McCain, 25% rate it a tie.
  • How did the debate impact vote preferences? 28% say they are now committed to Obama, 14% to McCain and 58% are still uncommitted.
  • Candidates rated - would raise your taxes?
    McCain: 56% before the debate, 48% after
    Obama: 68% before the debate, 63% after
  • Candidates rated - would make the right decisions on health care?
    McCain: 27% before the debate, 30% after
    Obama: 61% before the debate, 69% after
  • Candidates rated - would make the right decisions on the economy?
    McCain: 38% before the debate, 48% after
    Obama: 54% before the debate, 65% after

CNN and the Opinion Research Corporation conducted follow-up telephone interviews with a random sample of 620 registered voters who watched the debate.  In a previous survey, conducted October 13-14, they inidicated they planned to watch tonight's debate.

  • Who did the best job?  58% Obama, 31% McCain.  
  • Obama's rating (favorable-unfavorable):  Pre-debate 63-35%, Post debate 66-33%
  • McCain's rating (favorable-unfavorable):  Pre-debate 51-45%, Post debate 49-49%
  • Who expressed his views more clearly?: 66% Obama, 25% McCain
  • Who spent more time attacking his opponent?:  80% McCain, 7% Obama
  • Who seemed to be the strongest leader?: 56% Obama, 39% McCain
  • Who was more likable?: Obama 70%, McCain 22%
  • Who would better handle the economy?:  59% Obama, 35% McCain
  • Who would better handle health care?: 62% Obama, 31% McCain
  • <Who would better handle taxes: 56% Obama, 41% McCain

Update -  From the CNN summary:

The poll was conducted by telephone with 620 adult Americans who watched the debate. The audience for this debate appears to be a bit more Democratic than the U.S. population as a whole. Forty percent of debate watchers in the poll were Democrats and 30 percent Republicans.

Update II - CNN subsequently updated it's summary:

Eighty-eight percent of Democrats questioned in the poll said Obama did the best job, with 68 percent of Republicans saying McCain performed best. Among independents, 57 percent said Obama did the best job, with 31 percent backing McCain as the winner of the debate

That result is consistent with the reactions by party to the Town Hall debate.  Democrats were more impressed with Obama's performance than Republicans were with McCain's, and independents preferred Obama.

Update III - The Media Curves online/text message survey, a SurveyUSA post-debate poll in California and the Democracy Corps "dial groups" conducted by Democratic pollster Stan Greenberg showed similar results (see also the account by Time's Amy Sullivan).


The Return of "Outliers"

Topics: 3BlueDudes , David Hill , Ezra Klein , Gary Langer , Jay Cost , Jon Cohen , Mark Mellman , Michael McDonald , Mike Murphy , Nate Silver , PPP , Ruy Teixeira

Somewhere during the conventions, I got out of the habit of posting these. So for those new to the site, here is a collection of links to "outliers" -- interesting polling related items from the last week:

Mike Murphy thinks televised "dial groups" are madness (a certain blogger agrees).

Mark Mellman explores the disconnect between the way pundits and voters graded the debates.

Michael McDonald analyzes the new voters in North Carolina and Ohio and posts a trove of Census demographic data on the voters of 2004.

Ruy Teixeira posts a trove of his own: analyses of the political geography of OH, Mi & MO, VA & FL, PA, the Intermountain West and a summary presentation.

Nate Silver sees Obama dominating among early voters.

Gary Langer examines the sharpening perception that the McCain campaign is more negative.

Jay Cost ponders the Palin effect and shares his thoughts on Gallup's likely voter model.

David Hill thinks pollsters could do a better job documenting the role that Obama's race plays in this election.

Jon Cohen links to a vintage report on the 1980 election by the late Warren Mitofsky that debunks claims that Reagan trailed Carter by a wide margin in mid October (see also this chart).

Ezra Klein thinks swing voters get too much attention (via Sullivan).

PPP asks you to vote on where they should poll next week, seeks a better list for West Virginia and posts a report on how at how party unity has shifted since the conventions.

And if you haven't yet seen the 3BlueDudes massive mash-up of electoral vote projections, by all means, check it out.  


Rasmussen: IL, KS, MA, NM (10/13)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen
Mode: IVR

Illinois 500 LV, 4.5%
Obama 56, McCain 39
Sen: Durbin (D-i) 62, Sauerberg (R) 31

Kansas 500 LV, 4.5%
McCain 54, Obama 41
Sen: Roberts (R-i) 55, Slattery (D) 36

Massachusetts 500 LV, 4.5%
Obama 62, McCain 34
Sen: Kerry (D-i) 63, Beatty (R) 31

New Mexico 700 LV, 4%
Obama 55, McCain 42
Sen: Udall (D) 57, Pearce (R) 37


US: Obama 45, McCain 42 (IBDTIPP-10/9-14)

Topics: PHome

IBD-TIPP
10/9-14/08; 872 LV, 3.3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 45, McCain 42


Bradley-Wilder: New Data on Interviewer Race

Topics: Adam Berinsky , Bradley/Wilder , Gary Langer , Kathy Frankovic

Just yesterday, I expressed a bit of frustration that much of the recent media focus on the "Bradley-Wilder Effect." Much of it, and much of the debate in the blogosphere, inevitably turns on looking backward at what surveys did or did not miss 20 or 30 years ago. Instead, my hope is that pollsters will share with use new measurements based on their current survey data that can help us determine whether any such "effect" is in store for 2008.

Today, the ABC Polling Unit and its director Gary Langer posted data indicating that on at least one measure, the 2008 surveys are not yielding evidence of the "effect."

First, a bit of background for those who are just tuning in: The pattern seen in surveys in the 1980s and early 1990s was that in races pitting black Democrats against white Republicans, the final public opinion polls would accurately forecast the percentage of the vote for the African American candidate but would understate support for the white candidate. One piece of evidence that the effect was real was the apparent presence of "race of interviewer effects." Here is the way I described the issue in a column earlier this year:

Pollsters concluded [20 years ago] that racial attitudes were at work in the Bradley-Wilder effect when they observed that white respondents tended to report different vote preferences depending on whether the interviewer was black or white.

The best known study of this phenomenon -- a 1989 Public Opinion Quarterly article [PDF] based on surveys of the Virginia governor's race -- closed with an "unambiguous recommendation: survey organizations must record the race of interviewers and check for these effects whenever they conduct polls in black-white electoral contests."

That is exactly what Langer and ABC have done with 7,281 white respondents interviewed so far this year, and they see no evidence of race of interviewer effects in their recent surveys:

Among registered voters in a dozen national ABC/Post polls this year, 53 percent of white respondents told white interviewers they supported McCain - as did 52 percent of white respondents speaking with black interviewers. Forty-one percent of whites told white interviewers they supported Obama; an identical 41 percent said the same to black interviewers. And 93 or 94 percent of back respondents backed Obama, regardless of the interviewer's race. (It's unclear, moreover, how well respondents can even tell the interviewer's race in a telephone survey. In one of our recent polls 55 percent identified it correctly, but 23 percent were wrong and 22 percent declined to hazard a guess.)

The pollsters at CBS News did a similar analysis earlier this year and also found some "limited" evidence of race of interviewer effects in surveys conducted in 2007, but not in 2008, and then only on questions asked about the primary election contest between Clinton and Obama. Here is the way CBS polling directory Kathy Frankovic described that evidence recently (emphasis added):

This spring we aggregated several polls and looked at the interaction between the race of the interviewer and the race of the respondent and how that might impact vote choice. We did find some race of interviewer effects among white respondents, but it was relatively small, and appeared limited. White Republicans, the oldest white voters and the youngest white voters, and whites in the South and the West, showed no race of interviewer effect. There was some among white voters who were Democratic identifiers, those who were between the ages of 44 and 64, and those who lived in the Northeast or Midwest. However, more recent polls haven't found a significant race of interviewer effect. But clearly we need to look at this on a regular basis.

Again, pollsters including Langer and Frankovic continue to debate the theories and evidence behind the apparent "effect" seen 20 or so years ago. That is an interesting discussion, but not particularly relevant to the 2008 election. The bottom line: if present day surveys are yielding little or no evidence of race of interviewer effects, that is a big strike against the possibility of a pronounced "Bradley effect" this year.

Bonus: And speaking of looking backward, friend-of-Pollster Adam Berinsky reminds me of his three-part series on past evidence of the Bradley-Wilder effect. His second post in the series provides some very helpful explanation of why interviewer effects are an important clue:

They key to understanding the Bradley effect from this point of view is to think about who would be uncomfortable answering the candidate preference question. For this, we need to put each election in its proper context. The 1989 New York City mayoral election is the case I'm most familiar with, both because I've done some analysis of the pre-election polling data, and because I was a New York resident at the time. In that election the preferred candidate of older Jewish Democrats (or, as I like to call them, Mom and Dad*), Ed Koch, lost a contentious Democratic primary to David Dinkins, who is black. Considering that many older Jewish Democrats had never in their life voted for a Republican candidate, a vote for Giuliani in the general election could be seen as nothing but a vote against Dinkins. Indeed among Jews over 50, 30 percent claimed that they didn't know who they were going to vote for a week before the election, even though 93 percent said they would definitely cast a vote (among non-Jews under 50, 7 percent said they didn't know who they were going to vote for and 89 percent said they would definitely vote). These are the precise circumstances where we would expect to see the polls perform poorly - and they did.

The whole series is worth reading in full.


US: Obama 52, McCain 44 (Gallup-10/12-14)

Topics: PHome

Gallup Poll
10/12-14/08
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National

Registered Voters (2,785 RV, 2%):
Obama 50, McCain 43

**Likely Voters-Expanded** (2,319 LV, 2%):
Obama 52, McCain 44

Likely Voters-Traditional (2,160 LV, 2%):
Obama 49, McCain 46


CNN/TIME: CO, FL, GA, MO, VA (10/11-14)

Topics: PHome

CNN / TIME / ORC
10/11-14/08
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews
(source)

Colorado 762 LV, 3.5%
Obama 51, McCain 47

Florida 765 LV, 3.5%
Obama 51, McCain 46

Georgia 718 LV, 3.5%
McCain 53, Obama 45

Missouri 763 LV, 3.5%
McCain 49, Obama 48

Virginia 698 LV, 3.5%
Obama 53, McCain 43


US: Obama 50, McCain 41 (LABloom-10/10-13)

Topics: PHome

Los Angeles Times / Bloomberg
10/10-13/08; 1,030 LV, 3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews
(story, results)

National
Obama 50, McCain 41


US: Obama 48, McCain 39 (Ipsos-10/9-13)

Topics: PHome

Ipsos-McClatchy
10/9-13/08; 1,036 RV, 3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interivews

National
Obama 48, McCain 39, Nader 2, Barr 1


The Evidence on Cell Phone Only Voters

Topics: Cell Phones , National Journal

My NationalJournal.com column for the week looks at what we know about whether the rise in cell-phone only households is causing any skew in polling results. The short answer is that polls that cannot reach cell-phone-only voters may be slightly understating support for Obama and overstating support for McCain, although the difference is small (and likely within the margin of error of any individual poll). As the Pew Research Center's Scott Keeter recent told the Arizona Reporter (in a clip received too late to make the column), "For the first time, we’re actually seeing a difference between cell-only voters and land line voters when you take into account age."

I hope you read it all.


InsiderAdvantage: FL, NV, NC, WV

Topics: PHome

InsiderAdvantage
Mode: IVR

Florida 10/13, 612 LV, 3.8%
Obama 48, McCain 44

Nevada 10/13, 506 LV, 4%
Obama 49, McCain 46

North Carolina 10/13, 474 LV, 5%
Obama 48, McCain 46

West Virginia 10/13, 522 LV, 4%
McCain 49, Obama 47


US: Obama 49, McCain 42 (Pew-10/9-12)

Topics: PHome

Pew Research Center / PSRA
10/9-12/08; 1,278 RV (3.5%), 1,191 LV (3.5%)
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews
(source)

National
Likely Voters:
Obama 49, McCain 42

Registered Voters:
Obama 50, McCain 40


FL: Obama 47, McCain 42 (Datamar-10/12-13)

Topics: PHome

Datamar Inc
10/12-13/08; 1,328 RV, 2.7%
Mode: IVR

Florida
Obama 47, McCain 42


US: Obama 49, McCain 41 (Hotline 10/12-14)

Topics: PHome

Diageo/Hotline
10/12-14,08; 823 LV 3.4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 49, McCain 41


US: Obama 51, McCain 43 (GWU 10/08-09, 10/12-14)

Topics: PHome

GWU/Battleground
Tarrance Group (R)/Lake Research (D)
10/08-09,10/12-14, 08; 1000 LV 3.0%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 51, McCain 43


DE: Obama 56, McCain 41 (Rasmussen-10/10)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen Reports
10/10/08; 500 LV, 4.5%
Mode: IVR

Delaware
Obama 56, McCain 41
Gov: Markell (D) 62, Lee (R) 34


SurveyUSA: NM, SC, WA (10/12-13)

Topics: PHome

SurveyUSA
Mode: IVR

New Mexico 10/12-13/08; 568 LV, 4.2%
Obama 52, McCain 45
Sen: Udall (D) 58, Pearce (R) 40

South Carolina 10/12-13/08; 561 LV, 4.2%
McCain 55, Obama 41
Sen: Graham (R) 56, Conley (D) 40

Washington 10/12-13/08; 544 LV, 4.3%
Obama 56, McCain 40
Gov: Gregoire (D) 48, Rossi (R) 47


US: Obama 50, McCain 45 (Rasmussen 10/12-14)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen
10/12-14, 08; 3,000 LV 2%
Mode: IVR

National
Obama 50, McCain 45


Morning Status Report for 10/15

Topics: Status Update

The last 24 hours were relatively slow for new statewide polls, mostly because I included the crack-of-dawn releases by Quinnipiac University in yesterday morning's update. These new polls make no change in our map classifications or even in the rank of states based on the Obama-McCain margin on our trend estimates.

2008-10-15 Daily.jpg

The two new polls from Democratic pollsters PPP happen to be from the two states currently showing the closest margins on our trend marginals, North Carolina and (believe it or not) Missouri. Both help move increase Obama's margins slightly on our trend estimates.

The latest SurveyUSA poll in Ohio shows Obama leading by five points (50% to 45%), providing further confirmation of Obama's gains there. It nudges Obama's advantage on our trend estimate there up to 4.3% (49.6% to 45.3%).


2008-10-15 trend


My morning snapshot of the national trend estimate catches what will likely be a momentary high point for the Democrats, largely as the result of the new CBS/New York Times poll showing Obama with 14 point advantage. While the other daily tracking results will probably lower the 9.1 percent margin on the national trend by the time I get this entry posted, the national tracking surveys have been essentially flat this week. Some move up, some move down, suggesting that most of the variation is statistical noise. Still, as should be obvious from the electoral vote count, a 6 to 8 point lead in the national polls translates to crushing margin in the electoral college.


US: Obama 52, McCain 41 (Daily Kos 10/12-14)

Topics: PHome

Daily Kos (D)/Research 2000
10/12-14, 08; 1,100 LV 3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 52, McCain 41


US: Obama 53, McCain 39 (CBS/NYT 10/10-13)

Topics: PHome

CBS News/New York Times
10/10-13/08; 972 Registered voters, MOE +/-3%; 699 "effective likely voters,*"
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews
(CBS election story, election results, economy story, economy results; NY Times story, results, methodology)

National
Likely Voters:
Obama 53, McCain 39
(10/5: Obama 48, McCain 45)


*From the CBS Release: "*Every registered voter is included in the likely voter model, and is assigned a probability of voting, which is used to calculate the likely voter results. The sum of these probabilities is the effective number of likely voters."


US: Obama 48, McCain 44 (Zogby 10/11-14)

Topics: PHome

Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby
10/11-14, 08; 1,210 LV 2.9%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 48, McCain 44


Different Polls, Different Trends


As the discussion of Charles Franklin's column on house effects suggests, most people believe that "who's right" in their poll results these days will be resolved after Election Day. Then we can compare which polls came closest to the final results, and infer that the most accurate polls in the final pre-election predictions were probably the most accurate during the campaign as well.

 

But it doesn't usually work out that way. In 2004, the seven polls noted in the accompanying chart all showed Bush winning by a margin of one to three percentage points, except for Fox, showing Kerry the winner by two. All the results were well within the polls' margins of errors in comparison with the actual election results.

 

0810_14 Final Poll Predictions 2004 Election.png

However, the interesting point is that during the month of September, these very same polls showed dramatically different dynamics. As shown in the next graph, there were three basic stories: ABC, Gallup, Time and ABC all showed Bush gaining momentum in the weeks following the Republican National Convention, and then falling toward the end of the month. Furthermore, although these pollsters all agreed with the general pattern, at the end of the month Gallup showed Bush with an 8-point lead, CBS and Time had him at one point, and ABC at 6 points.

 

The second story, reported by Fox, Zogby and TIPP, showed very little movement over the month of September, with the margin varying from a Kerry lead of one point to a Bush lead of three points.

 

Finally, Pew had its own dynamic, not found by any of the other polls, showing a significant surge for Bush after the convention, followed by a dramatic decline, then another significant surge.

 

0810_14 Bush Lead Sept 2004.png

One of the most interesting comparisons is between Gallup and Pew, which diverged by 13 points in mid-September, but closed to agreement by the end of the month.

 

At the end, all the pollsters could claim they were "right" on target, and NCPP dutifully noted the fine performance of the media polls. That performance, of course, was only in the final prediction. No effort was made to evaluate the polls during the campaign, though clearly they presented contradictory results. It appears as though we need a means of evaluating the polls during the election campaign.

 

It's true, of course, that we can't know which polls are most accurate during the campaign, but we can say that collectively they often tell quite divergent stories. And that hardly qualifies them for plaudits after Election Day.

Last week (Oct. 6), Gallup and DailyKos/Research 2000 tracking polls both showed Obama up by 9 and 11 points respectively, the same figures they show as of Oct. 13. Diageo/Hotline, GWU/Battleground and Zogby tracking polls all showed quite different results - with quite different trends.

 

On Oct. 7, Diageo/Hotline, GWU and Zogby showed an average of a 2-point lead for Obama, while DailyKos and Gallup showed an average of a 10.5 point lead. All three of the former polls reported an increasing lead for Obama in the subsequent week, while Gallup and DailyKos told us there was essentially no change.

 

Obama's Lead Among Five Tracking Polls

 

Gallup

Gallup2

DailyKos

Diageo

GWU

Zogby

6-Oct

9

 

11

2

7

3

7-Oct

11

 

10

1

4

2

8-Oct

11

 

10

6

3

4

9-Oct

10

 

12

7

8

5

10-Oct

9

 

12

10

 

4

11-Oct

7

6

13

8

 

6

12-Oct

10

10

12

6

8

4

13-Oct

9

10

11

6

13

6

 

 

After the election, will we know which tracking polls were right? If history is a guide, all will come within their polls' margins of errors compared to the final election results. And we will all forget how confusing their different prognostications were during the campaign.

 

Perhaps we need another standard by which to judge the polls' performances during the election campaign.


The Bradley-Wilder Media Tour

Topics: Bradley/Wilder , Kathy Frankovic , Pew Research Center , Scott Keeter

The last few days have certainly been a boon for anyone interested in the "Bradley Effect" (also known as, variously, the Wilder or the Bradley-Wilder effect.). Long analytical pieces have appeared on Sunday in the New York Times , The Washington Post and on CBS Sunday Morning. CBS News survey director Kathy Frankovic devoted her column to it this week. Nate Silver added his thoughts. And Lance Tarrance, the Republican pollster who worked for Tom Bradley's Republican opponent, published a skeptical piece on RealClearPolitics on the subject (skeptical puts it mildly -- he calls the potential of an "effect" skewing the results this time a "pernicious canard and is unworthy of 21st century political narratives").

For the unlikely few who may be tuning in to this subject for the first time, the Bradley Effect describes a pattern witnessed in the 1980s and early 1990s in a series of contests between black and white candidates, including the historic gubernatorial candidacies of Tom Bradley in California in 1982 and Doug Wilder in Virginia in 1989. Polls in those races typically got support for the black candidate about right, but usually understated support for the white candidate. Over the last ten years, however, that effect largely disappeared (for more details, see the analysis by the Pew Research Center, the paper by Harvard post-doctoral fellow Daniel Hopkins and my own posts here and here).

If you read through any one of the pieces on the subject this week you will pick up two themes: First, pollsters and survey researchers continue to engage in vigorous debate over how real the effect was twenty to thirty years ago. Second, they often disagree about exactly what the effect was or how it was measured. It can be a confusing topic for those of us who conduct surveys, so I can imagine how bewildering it is for ordinary news consumers trying to make sense of this season's political polls.

Pollsters that I respect fall into two camps on this subject. Kathy Frankovic sums up an argument that has the merit of being based on the available evidence of polls conducted over the last ten years:

Despite all the claims that Americans have moved beyond race, we still want to talk about race!

Why else was "race" practically the first explanation offered in New Hampshire this year when pre-primary polls failed to predict the outcome? Was it really the resurrection of the so-called "Bradley Effect" from all the way back in 1982?

Why else did people "forget" (or disregard) that in 2006 pre-election polls in two state-wide races involving black candidates showed NO indication of ths "effect? [...]

We've gone through this topic many times, yet we still seem to worry about people lying to pollsters, or that black interviewers will get different answers from respondents than white interviewers do. Some of us even believe that every person who has yet to declare a preference publicly must, somehow, be motivated by race.

Yet several Democratic campaign pollsters I talk to and respect still have strong memories of the illusory leads their clients had in some of those high profile races in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Their attitudes are a lot like those of this non-pollster friend of TPMCafe contributor Todd Gitlin:

Whether there is or is not a "Bradley effect," it is very helpful to believe there is one, and very dangerous to believe there is not. And since we don't know for sure, the only prudent thing to do is to assume that there is one. Any other assumption is reckless. Whether it is due to a "Bradley effect," an October surprise, or some other variant, the good guys always need 60% to eke out a 1% victory. If Dems get overconfident, then McCain will have us just where he wants us. Instead of measuring the drapes, we need to be fighting to stave off defeat.

Reading over all of the articles over the last week -- and the debate that continues in our comments section -- I realize I could spend every moment of the next three weeks writing and speculating about the "effect" without getting any closer to the truth of what we might see on November 4. What would be helpful, and what I hope pollsters will pursue, are new measurements to guide us in how to interpret or allocate the remaining undecided voters and tell us (something admittedly harder to measure) whether those refusing to participate in surveys may be skewing results in a particular direction.

If you are a pollster, I highly recommend this plan of action that Scott Keeter, director of survey research at the Pew Research Center, shared with me last June:

We plan to do three things to monitor this. One is to continue to try to measure the impact of racial attitudes on voter judgments, as we did in our March 2008 national poll. We don't have a way to bring this to bear directly upon our vote estimates, but at least it can tell us how important racial attitudes are relative to other considerations. Second, we will look at race of interviewer effects. In my polling in Virginia in 1989, race of interviewer effects were quite strong, and my polls (like almost everyone else's) understated support for the white Republican candidate against Doug Wilder. Third, we will look at respondents who are hard to reach and especially at refusal conversions to see if there is any pattern there. As you may recall, in our 1997 non-response experiment we did find some weak evidence that the most resistant respondents were less favorable to African Americans. We were unable to replicate this in our 2003 nonresponse study, but we think it's worth looking at during this election season.

Finally, with respect to the allocation of undecideds, we will very much follow the course we did in 2004 and that Andy described to you in [your 2006] interview. We'll probably discard a portion of them, and then allocate the rest based on the evidence we have about them in the survey: their demographics, the attitudes and values, and perhaps a little bit on the basis of how the leaners overall are leaning. Racial attitudes are likely to be a part of this evidence-based process, especially if we continue to find them to be correlated with the vote among the decided.


21 Days to Go and McCain's Slide Continues


The last eight days have been devastating for the McCain campaign. The deepening economic crisis (yesterday's historic market surge notwithstanding) is giving Obama an electoral surge that in the current environment may prove to be insurmountable. While three weeks is the equivalent of three lifetimes in politics, time is running out for McCain to turn this thing around.

To fully understand the impact of the economic situation on this race, take a look at the trajectory of our regression analysis vote projection of all public polls. The current regression estimate has McCain down -7.9 points.

regression oct 14.png

The McCain decline since his peak following the convention is startling. While it is unlikely that this trend will hold over the final three weeks (there will probably be some tightening - more on that later), if it did hold McCain would lose by double-digits. Again, the important point is that the McCain descent is real.

Sometimes really smart ideas come from young people and one such example is an analysis that came from a high school student named Arjun Modi, who graphed the trend of the S&P 500 with McCain's vote according to the Gallup Daily Tracker of registered voters. It shows how McCain's drop in vote share accelerated during the stock market crash of the last two weeks.

markets oct 14.png
Note the high degree of correlation between the two lines. The question, of course, is whether days like yesterday (when the market surged) will translate into a vote increase for McCain. Time will tell. But we tend to think that the underlying economic turmoil (job losses, slowing of retail and a weak housing market) will mitigate the upside for McCain. However any improvement that moves the economy to a page two story will be a help for the Republican.

Here is our up-to-the-minute assessment of the political landscape:

  1. The President just spoke (8:05 am) and announced that the Federal Government would take an equity stake in the nation's largest banks. This will help free up the credit market and it will keep the financial situation on the front pages for at least another two days.


  2. Yesterday's market surge (936 points for the Dow) was the largest point gain ever and the largest percentage gain since 1933. As of this writing, Japan's Nikkei index was up 14% and the U.S. market looks to open higher. This will not erase the memory of last week. The Dow Jones industrials lost 18% last week - their worst week in history. Regardless of what happens this week, the country experienced a stock market crash and there has been saturation media coverage. Its effect on this political campaign cannot be overstated.


  3. Last night General Motors announced that it is closing two plants: one in Grand Rapids, MI and the other in Janesville, WI, eliminating 2,700 jobs. The trickle-down effect of the economic crisis is just beginning; this is yet another blow for Team McCain.


  4. Obama and McCain meet for their final debate tomorrow night in NY and this is the last face-to- face between the two candidates. Obama will try not to lose and McCain has to go for the political jugular. If this is another non-event, Obama will have won all three debates.


  5. According to the Washington Post, Barack Obama is outspending John McCain by nearly a three-to-one margin on television time in the final weeks of the election. Team Obama's advantage in several battleground states may be even greater. Voters in key states like Pennsylvania, Virginia, Wisconsin and Ohio are seeing four Obama spots for every one McCain television commercial.


Current Political Situation and Issue Handling Measures

Without sounding like a broken record, it bears repeating that we are in one of the longest and deepest periods of voter discontent in modern U.S. history. This compares to 1992, 1979 and 1974. Below is a chart using multiple sources of public and private data over a 25 year period.

historical direction.png

Currently more than 80% of the country believes that things are going in the wrong direction. This is an obvious change election environment and it will pervade down-ballot elections, too.

Obama benefits from this but there is more to his lead than the perceived state of the union. In the last three weeks he has taken a large lead over McCain on voter perceptions of his ability to handle issues. According to a recent NBC/WSJ poll, Obama leads McCain by 17 points on which candidate would better handle the economy. In that poll, Obama was perceived as better able to handle the mortgage and housing crisis (a 15-point advantage) and the issue of energy and the cost of gas (six points).

And there's more. According to a CNN/ORC poll done seven days ago, Obama led McCain by 21 points on his ability to handle the economy. In the same poll, Obama is also seen as better able to handle the current financial crisis (21 points) and-get this-the war in Iraq (three points). On virtually every issue (with the exception of terrorism, which McCain wins narrowly) Obama leads McCain. And remember, the economy is far and away the number one issue in the country.

EV Map and Key States

map oct 14.png

Trends in critical states are all moving toward Obama. In Colorado, a state we've followed closely as a key battleground, the tide has decidedly shifted for Obama in the past two weeks. We are now placing it in the Obama column, giving him 273 relatively safe electoral votes. If he is capable of holding serve in the states he currently leads, he will win the election handily.

CO oct 14.png

Looking at other battleground states, Missouri in particular has to be worrisome for Team McCain. Not only is it the Presidential bellwether, this year it is critical to McCain's electoral math given his slides in Nevada and New Mexico. McCain should be winning in Missouri, and it's unlikely that he can win the Presidency without it.

MO oct 14.png

The only positive--or, at least, the least negative--news for McCain is that Florida and Ohio, worth a whopping 47 electoral votes between them, remain within reach.

OH oct 14.png

FL oct 14.png

This seems like a massive hill for McCain to climb. And it is. We do believe, however, that the gap between the two candidates will close somewhat over the next 14 days. For the most part it will happen naturally (because that is the nature of the electorate in these modern times), though some of it will be driven by McCain attacks on Obama and the continued latent insecurity that many voters have with the Democratic nominee--and to a certain extent the media will latch on to the comeback narrative as well. This week will go a long way toward telling us if that swing back is going to be big enough.


US: Obama 48, McCain 42 (Hotline 10/11-13)

Topics: PHome

Diageo/Hotline
10/11-13,08; 829 LV 3.4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 48, McCain 42


US: Obama 53, McCain 40 (GWU 10/08-09, 10/12-13)

Topics: PHome

GWU/Battleground
Tarrance Group (R)/Lake Research (D)
10/08-09,10/12-12, 08; 800 LV 3.5%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 53, McCain 40


US: Obama 50, McCain 45 (Rasmussen 10/11-13)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen
10/11-13, 08; 3,000 LV 2%
Mode: IVR

National
Obama 50, McCain 45


Morning Status Update for 10/14

Topics: Status Update

I delayed this morning's update to include the new Quinnipiac surveys that include pre- and post-debate samples in the battleground states of Colorado, Michigan, Minnesota and Wisconsin. We thus have 21 new statewide surveys logged since this time yesterday.

2008-10-14 daily

While most indicate progress for the Obama/Biden ticket since the last poll by the same pollsters, trends over the last week are less evident. The table above includes 12 new polls that are in states where the pollsters have released two surveys since October 1. Seven (7) of the 12 show net movement in Obama's direction, two in McCain's direction and three show no change at all in the margin.

2008-10-14 trends.jpg

Nonetheless, the new polls continue to improve the Democrats standing on our state trend estimates. In 10 of the 11 states we have been tracking, the new polls increased the Obama margin slightly.

Probably nothing shows how far the Democrats have come in just a few weeks than the states that shifted to our dark blue "strong Democrat" designation over the last 24 hours. The new surveys increased Obama's leads on our trend estimates to nearly 10 points (51.1% to 41.3%) in Michigan, 8 points (51.7% to 43.7%) in Colorado and nearly seven points (51.2% to 44.4%) in Florida, all enough to merit a "strong Democrat" designation. As such, we now show Obama leading by "strong" margins in states with 256 electoral votes, just 14 shy of the necessary 270 (and that does not include the 64 electoral votes classified as "lean" Obama).

Maine, where Obama leads by 7.5 points (50.7% to 43.2%) remains in the "lean category" because pollsters there typically use smaller than average sample sizes.

Virginia remains just barely in the toss-up column despite a 3.8 point margin for Obama over McCain (50.3% to 46.5%), also due mostly to smaller than average sample sizes there.

North Dakota, one state not listed above, shifted into our "toss-up" category on the basis of a new poll yesterday from The Forum and Minnesota State University Moorehead showing Obama with a 2-point advantage over McCain (45% to 43%). A better designation would be "not enough information necessary to classify. We have logged only four polls total in North Dakota since the conventions, and this new poll is the first new data since the Democrats started gaining in mid-September. Moreover, the samples sizes of the few polls are smaller than average. Our trend estimate still shows McCain ahead (47.4% to 43.8%) but not by enough to remain in the "lean Republican" column. Take that "toss-up" designation with a big grain of salt.

Finally, the national margin had narrowed a bit over the last 24 hours, but that is mainly because we started including Gallup's new likely voter results and because of a new tracking poll from Investor's Business Daily/TIPP that shows Obama leading by just two percentage points.


US: Obama 52, McCain 41 (Daily Kos 10/11-13)

Topics: PHome

Daily Kos (D)/Research 2000
10/11-13, 08; 1,100 LV 3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 52, McCain 41


Quinnipiac: CO, MI, MN, WI (10-8/12)

Topics: PHome

Quinnipiac University/ Washington Post / Wall Street Journal
Two new surveys in each state, conducted 10/3-7/2008 and 10/8-12 2008
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews
(Washington Post story, Wall Street Journal article, Quinnipiac release)

Colorado
10/8-12 (1,088 LV, +/-3): Obama 52, McCain 43
10/3-7 (997 LV, +/-3.1): Obama 52, McCain 43

Michigan
10/8-12 (1,043 LV, +/-3): Obama 54, McCain 38
10/3-7 (1,122 LV, +/-2.9): Obama 55, McCain 37

Minnesota
10/8-12 (1,019 LV, +/-3.1): Obama 51, McCain 40
10/3-7 (1,076 LV, +/-3): Obama 51, McCain 43

Wisconsin
10/8-12 (1,201 LV, +/-2.8): Obama 54, McCain 37
10/3-7 (1,081 LV, +/-3): Obama 51, McCain 43


US: Obama 49, McCain 43 (Zogby 10/10-13)

Topics: PHome

Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby
10/10-13, 08; 1,208 LV 2.9%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 49, McCain 43


OK: McCain 66, Obama 29 (TVPOLL-10/4-5)

Topics: PHome

TVPoll.com
10/10-12/08; 813 LV, 3.4%
Mode: IVR

Oklahoma
McCain 63, Obama 32
(10/4-5: McCain 66, Obama 29)

Sen: Inhofe (R-i) 53, Rice (D) 40, Wallace (I) 2
(10/4-5: Inhofe 53, Rice 40, Wallace 2)


US: Obama 45, McCain 43 (IBD-TIPP-10/6-12)

Topics: PHome

Investor's Business Daily /
TechnoMetrica Institute of Public Policy
10/6-12/08; 825 LV, 3.3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 45, McCain 43
(9/2-7: Obama 45, McCain 40)


PA: Obama 51, McCain 38 (Muhlenberg-10/9-13)

Topics: PHome

Muhlenberg College / Morning Call
10/9-13/08; 580 LV, 4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

Pennsylvania
Obama 51, McCain 38


Gallup's New Likely Voter Model

Topics: Charts , Gallup , Likely Voters , Pollster.com

Though I caught reference to it elsewhere, I managed to overlook the detailed description in today's Gallup Daily release of how they will report "likely voter" results for the rest of the campaign:

Likely Voter Estimates

Obama's current advantage is slightly less when estimating the preferences of likely voters, which Gallup will begin reporting on a regular basis between now and the election. Gallup is providing two likely voter estimates to take into account different turnout scenarios.

The first likely voter model is based on Gallup's traditional likely voter assumptions, which determine respondents' likelihood to vote based on how they answer questions about their current voting intention and past voting behavior. According to this model, Obama's advantage over McCain is 50% to 46% in Oct. 9-11 tracking data.

The second likely voter estimate is a variation on the traditional model, but is only based on respondents' current voting intention. This model would take into account increased voter registration this year and possibly higher turnout among groups that are traditionally less likely to vote, such as young adults and racial minorities (Gallup will continue to monitor and report on turnout indicators by subgroup between now and the election). According to this second likely voter model, Obama has a 51% to 45% lead over McCain.

With a fifty-year time series of presidential polling to consider, Gallup has often demonstrated a reluctance to change its methods. As such, Gallup does deserve credit for trying, as Jay Carney put it today, "to apply a [new] model that accounts for the electorate's likely new complexion," even if they are essentially "hedging their bets by going with two models."

Of course, that hedging presents us with a difficult decision to make about which Gallup results to include in our national trend charts. Our usual rule is to give preference to results among registered voters over samples of adults, and to "likely voter" samples over registered voters. Charles Franklin and I had a two-part exchange on this subject back in August that explains the rationale for our usual rule. As Franklin put it, "our first rule for Pollster is that we don't cherry pick." So we rely on a simple inclusion rule that relies on the pollsters' judgements:

Our decision rule says "trust the pollster" to make the best call their professional skills can make. It might not be the one we would make, but that's why the pollster is getting the big bucks. And our rule puts responsibility squarely on the pollsters shoulders as well, which is where it should be.

Unfortunately, in this case, Gallup is producing two different "likely voter" models without expressing a clear preference for either. So in this rare case, we will exercise our own judgement and opting to plot Gallup's newer "Likely Voter Model II," at least for the time being. Why? First, the Likely Voter II (the one based only on respondents current voting intention) splits the difference between the registered voter results we have been reporting for the Gallup Daily and the traditional model.

Second, and more important, the traditional Gallup likely voter model has been producing samples that have significantly fewer 18-to-29-year-olds than both the likely voter models of other pollsters and available estimates of the 2004 electorate. While no one can be certain about who will vote, the least likely outcome is a 2008 electorate that is older than those who voted in 2004.

Now should Gallup change and express a clear preference for either model, we will yield to their judgement. Until then, we will plot the "likely voter II" model for both Gallup Daily (as of today) and the remaining USA Today/Gallup polls.

Update: Nate Silver comes to the same conclusion. 


OR: Obama 57, McCain 40 (SurveyUSA-10/11-12)

Topics: PHome

SurveyUSA
10/11-12/08; 584 LV, 4.1%
Mode: IVR

Oregon
Obama 57, McCain 40
(9/24: Obama 52, McCain 41)

Sen: Merkley (D) 46, Smith (R-i) 41
(9/24: Merkley 44, Smith 42)


FOX/Rasmussen: FL, MO, OH, NC, VA (10/12)

Topics: PHome

FOX News / Rasmussen
10/12/2008, 1000 likely voters interviewed in each state, MOE +/- 3
Mode: IVR/Automated
Fox story, Rasmussen overview

Florida (story, toplines)
Obama 51, McCain 46, Nader 0, Barr 1, McKinney 0
(10/5: Obama 52, McCain 45, Nader 1, Barr 0, McKinney 0)

Missouri (story, toplines)
Obama 50, McCain 47, Barr 0, Nader 1, McKinney 0
(10/5: Obama 50, McCain 47, Barr 1, Nader 1, McKinney 0)

North Carolina (story, toplines)
Obama 48, McCain 48, Barr 1, Nader 0, McKinney 0
(10/8: Obama 49, McCain 48, Barr 0, Nader 0, McKinney 0)

Ohio (story, toplines)
Obama 49, McCain 47, Barr 0, Nader 1, McKinney 0
(10/5: McCain 48, Obama 47, Barr 1, Nader 1, McKinney 0)

Virginia (story, toplines)
Obama 50, McCain 47, Barr 1, Nader 0, McKinney 0
(10/5: Obama 50, McCain 48, Barr 1, Nader 0, McKinney 0)


US - Obama 52, McCain 45 (USA Today/Gallup)

Topics: PHome

USA Today / Gallup
10/10-12/2008; 1,269 adults.
Mode: Live Telephone Interview.
USA Today story, blog post preview.

National

Registered Voters
Obama 51, McCain 44
(9/27-29: Obama 49, McCain 45

Likely Voters
"A measure that takes into account the individuals' past voting histories."
Obama 50, McCain 46

"A measure of 'likely' voters that does not take into account the individuals' past voting histories, and instead focuses solely on their 'current voting intentions.'"
Obama 52, McCain 45




SurveyUSA: GA, NJ, NY (10/11-12)

Topics: PHome

SurveyUSA
10/11-12/08
Mode: IVR

Georgia
547 likely and actual voters, MOE +/- 4.3%
McCain 51, Obama 43
(9/30: McCain 52, Obama 41)

Senate: Chambliss (R) 46, Martin (D) 43, Buckley (L) 6
(9/30: Chambliss 46, Martin 44, Buckley 5)

New Jersey
551 likely voters, MOE +/- 4.2%
Obama 55, McCain 40
(9/29: Obama 52, McCain 42)

New York
547 likely voters, MOE +/- 4.1%
Obama 64, McCain 31
(9/25: Obama 57, McCain 38)


MO: Obama 51, McCain 43 (SurveyUSA 10/11-12)

Topics: PHome

SurveyUSA
10/11-12/08; 546 LV, 4.3%
Mode: IVR

Missouri
Obama 51, McCain 43,
(9/23-24: McCain 48, Obama 46


Gov: Nixon (D) 56, Hulshof (R) 34
(9/23-24:Nixon 54, Hulshof 37)


US Obama 51, McCain 41 (Gallup 10/10-12)

Topics: PHome

Gallup
10/10-12, 08; 2728 RV 2%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 51, McCain 41



OH, PA: Marist (10/5-8)

Topics: PHome

Marist College Institute for Public Opinion
Mode: Live telephone interviews conducted October 5-8, 2008

Ohio
961 registered voters, 771 likely voters, margin of error +/-3.5% for both

Likely voters with leaners: Obama 49, McCain 45
(9/11-15: Obama 47, McCain 45)

Registered voters: Obama 48, McCain 40
(9/11-15: Obama 44, McCain 44)

Pennsylvania
943 registered voters, 757 likely voters, margin of error +/-3.5% for both

Likely voters with leaners: Obama 53, McCain 41
(9/11-15: Obama 49, McCain 44)

Registered voters: Obama 49, McCain 40
(9/11-15: Obama 45, McCain 42)



NV: Obama 47, McCain 45 (MasonDixon-10/8-9)

Topics: PHome

Las Vegas Review-Journal / Mason Dixon
10/8-9/08; 625 LV, 4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

Nevada
Obama 47, McCain 45
(8/13-15: Obama 41, McCain 47)


ND: Obama 45, McCain 43 (The Forum - 10/6-8)

Topics: PHome

The Forum/In-Forum.com
Public Affairs Institute at Minnesota State University Moorhead
10/6-8/2008, 606 likely voters, margin of error +/- 4%

North Dakota
Obama 45, McCain 43


US: Obama 50, McCain 40 (DemCorps-10/8-12)

Topics: PHome

Democracy Corps (D) /
Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research (D)
10/8-12/08; 1,000 LV, 3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 50, McCain 40, Nader 2, Barr 3, Paul 0


US: Obama 48, McCain 42 (Hotline 10/10-12)

Topics: PHome

Diageo/Hotline
10/10-12,08; 823 LV 3.4%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 48, McCain 42


US: Obama 50, McCain 45 (Rasmussen 10/10-12)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen
10/10-12, 08; 3,000 LV 2%
Mode: IVR

National
Obama 50, McCain 45


US: Obama 52, McCain 40 (Daily Kos 10/10-12)

Topics: PHome

Daily Kos (D)/Research 2000
10/10-12,08; 1,100 LV 3%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 52, McCain 40


US: Obama 53, McCain 43 (ABCPost-10/8-11)

Topics: PHome

ABC News / Washington Post
10/8-11/08; 945 registered voters (MOE +/-3%), 766 likely voters (MOE +/- 3.5%)
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews
(ABC story, results; Post story, results)

National
Likely Voters:
Obama 53, McCain 43
(9/27-29: Obama 50, McCain 46)

Registered Voters:
Obama 54, McCain 41
(9/27-29: Obama 49, McCain 45)


US: Obama 51, McCain 43 (GWU 10/07-09, 10/12)

Topics: PHome

GWU/Battleground
Tarrance Group (R)/Lake Research (D)
10/07-09, 10/12, 08; 800 LV 3.5%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 51, McCain 43


Morning Status Report for 10/13

Topics: Status Update

Sunday was, as usual. a light day for new poll releases other than the national daily tracking polls. Since our last update Saturday afternoon, the only new statewide polls we had logged in battleground states were new surveys from PPP in Colorado and the new University of Cincinnati poll sponsored by a consortium of Ohio newspapers. The two news polls are counter trend in opposite directions. new Colorado poll shows a bigger Obama margin than other recent polls, while the Ohio surveys shows McCain with a two point advantage.

2008-10-13 Daily.jpg

The national daily tracking polls do, for the most part, show slight shifts back to Obama since the middle of last week, although Obama's margin on our national trend estimate as of this writing is almost exactly where it was this time last week.


2008-10-13 trends.jpg


US: Obama 48, McCain 44 (Zogby 10/09-12)

Topics: PHome

Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby
10/09-12,08; 1,206 LV 2.9%
Mode: Live Telephone Interviews

National
Obama 48, McCain 44


Tracking Poll House Effects

Topics: House Effects

dailytrackers.png
There are six daily tracking polls currently reporting data, up from just two (Gallup and Rasmussen) during most of the year. How are they doing?

Compared to our Pollster.com trend estimate based on all public polls, not too bad. The trend based on trackers only is close to that for the all polls trend, with an average difference of just 0.35 percentage points, a very slight under-estimate of the Obama minus McCain margin. Recently the difference has been negligible, with most of this difference coming early in the year.

A bit of visual inspection shows the GW Battleground poll seemed more out of line until they shifted their party weighting plan after a few days. Likewise Hotline had a couple day "hiccup" but has returned to trend.

What about house effects? The range is moderate, from +4.3 points on the margin for Daily Kos, to -4.2 points for Zogby, though the latter has only just started polling so the confidence interval is wide.

TrackerHFX.png


US: Obama 50, McCain 43 (Gallup 10/09-11)

Topics: PHome

Gallup
10/09-11,08; 2,783 RV 2%

National
Obama 40, McCain 43


US: Obama 49, McCain 41 (Hotline 10/09-11)

Topics: PHome

Diageo/Hotline
10/09-11,08; 814 LV 3.4%

National
Obama 49, McCain 41


CA: Obama 56, McCain 40 (Rasmussen 10/9)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen
Mode: IVR

California 10/9, 500 LV, 4.5%
Obama 56, McCain 40


US: Obama 51, McCain 45 (Rasmussen 10/09-11)

Topics: PHome

Rasmussen
10/09-11,08; 3,000 LV 2%

National
Obama 51, McCain 45


US: Obama 49, McCain 43 (Zogby 10/08-11)

Topics: PHome

Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby
10/08-11,08; 1,206 LV 2.9%

National
Obama 49, McCain 43


US: Obama 53, McCain 40 (Daily Kos 10/09-11)

Topics: PHome

Daily Kos (D)/ Research 2000
10/09-11,08; 1,100 LV 3%

National
Obama 53, McCain 40


 

MAP - US, AL, AK, AZ, AR, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, GA, HI, ID, IL, IN, IA, KS, KY, LA, ME, MD, MA, MI, MN, MS, MO, MT, NE, NV, NH, NJ, NM, NY, NC, ND, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VT, VA, WA, WV, WI, WY, PR