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Census Savings 'Outliers'

Topics: Outliers Feature

Robert Groves defends use of advance letters by the Census; Jennifer Agiesta has more.

Democracy Corps sees a rise in public support for health care; Jon Chait has more.

Chris Bowers notes that "unlikely" voters approve of Obama.

PolitiFact describes as "barely true" Dana Milbank's claim that G.W. Bush was our "least popular" modern president.

Katie Connolly says there's bad news for Obama in a new Harvard survey of young voters.

 

Comments
GARY WAGNER:

Wow. Talk about cherry picking polls. James Carville and his Democracy Corps is so desperate to twist the polls that he uses the two most notoriously bad polls available. He uses the You/Gov poll that shows support at 53%. Even healthcare advocates laugh at that result. Then he includes the Kaiser poll which very few put much faith in.

His own polling company, PPP, puts support at 39% but he wants to include the outrageous outliers so that it makes it look like 46% support compared to 47% opposition.

Did anyone notice that the pollster.com poll graph they include in their report is a "user generated" poll? They picked the results they liked and threw out the results they didn't in order to paint a distorted picture.

If you look at today's unfiltered graph it shows 44% support and 47% opposition. When you remove the YouGov results, you get to 43% support and 49% opposition. You can't blame this differrence on Rasmussen either - their polls are spot-on with the other polls. In fact, Rasmussen shows higher support than even Ipsos-McClatchy and AP-GfK on the same dates.

I don't know how they manipulated the graph to show what they did but maybe that is a question that pollster.com should be asking them. I have tried various filter selections for polls, date ranges, and percentages and the only way I can get close to the numbers they show is to exclude both Rasmussen, PPP, and exclude all polls taken after 03/02/09.

There is no denying that there was a several point bounce following the healthcare "summit". But it also appears that the bounce might already be disappearing.

I'm surprised that pollster.com lets political activists manipulate their graphs in such a way to distort the true picture. I thought pollster.com was about showing a more accurate picture than any single poll can show.

Jon Chait's take on it is even more ridiculous. He includes in his opening line and bases his entire article on the YouGov poll that shows 53% support. To his credit he does show the real pollster.com graph but then he uses the PPP report to justify his opinion.

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Mark Sanford:

I would like to second the commenter above me. The You/Gov Polimetrix poll is a joke. Even the Daily Kos has called it "crappy". It is an internet poll, for crying out loud. Those types of polls are notoriously inaccurate.

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Mark Sanford:

Here is the description of the YouGov poll from the Daily Kos:
"...crappy (pro-Democratic) internet YouGov poll".

Looking at the RealClearPolitics polling average, an average that excludes internet polls, the average is 41.3% support and 48.9% opposed.

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Wong:

Polls have consistently shown that of those who disapprove of the President's health care plan at least 1/3 do so because the plan does not go far enough (meaning no public option or single payer). This cohort will be easy to swing in the President's direction when the case is made that the current proposal is the most that is possible right now.

The important number is only 1/3 disapprove because the plan goes too far(excessive government involvement.

The attempt to portray the President's plan as deeply unpopular is just the latest example of the GOP's attempt to deceive the public. The breast-beating by the con-jobs over the slightest hint such a narrative is false only serves to display their desperation as passage of HCR nears.

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GARY WAGNER:

You just made that number up, Wong. There is no evidence anywhere to support that ridiculous claim that 1/3 disapprove of it because it doesn't go far enough.

If you can point to a poll that supports that claim then I will apologize. Otherwise I think you just grabbed those numbers out of thin air.

The plan that passed congress has a public option. Support didn't move beyond the margin of error when it passed. The senate version didn't contain the public option. Again, there was almost no movement in the support. When the president threw the public option under the bus support didn't change either. Those numbers don't support your claim.

With or without the public option, approval/disapproval is almost exactly where it was 6 months ago. Right now you could call a piece of blank paper a healthcare bill and the poll numbers wouldn't change. This is no longer about specifics - it is about concept.

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Ptolemy:

PolitiFact rebuts Milbank by concluding that several modern presidents were equally unpopular or worse than George W. Bush, by "slicing" Gallup job approval data several different ways.

On the other hand, Gallup data (going back as far as Truman) could be sliced to indicate that Bush was actually the most popular. At the zenith of his popularity he had a higher job approval than any president:

http://www.gallup.com/poll/124922/Presidential-Approval-Center.aspx

Second highest job approval? George H. W. Bush.

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