Strengthening Constitutional Self-Government

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Campaign Observations

News out this morning is that the latest ABC/Post poll has Obama up by nine points, well outside the margin of error. Sure, as our friends on The Corner are pointing out, the poll arguably oversampled Democrats. Maybe, but if you look at state-by-state polls by several different pollsters you see Obama moving ahead over the last week on account of the rising salience of economic woes and McCain’s unsteady response last week. This can’t be dismissed as sampling error. The wonder is that Obama hasn’t roared to an even bigger lead.

Meanwhile, our friends at the Corner are also having a back-and-forth about whether Palin should get out more this week. Good arguments on both sides, but I have a hunch there is a rope-a-dope dynamic in play. Once again the MSM is rising in chorus that she’s being hidden, kept from view, etc, even as she racks up record crowds on the stump. Remember what happened last time the MSM went with this theme? The big convention speech that blew everyone away.

There has been some chatter that the McCain people want a short-answer format for the VP debate, and some think this is a mistake as the longer you let Biden talk, the worse he gets. To the contrary, if you look back at Palin’s TV debates in Alaska, she tended to give crisp, concise answers. Crisp, concise answers are not Biden’s specialty. He’ll have problems. I have a hunch she’s going to cause some big problems for Biden (like, "Why have you voted for 25 years against developing missile defense to protect Alaska from North Korean missiles that can reach our cities right now?") I predict a fresh round of Palin-mania as a result of the debate.

Discussions - 4 Comments

Often outlier polls have been found to have over or under sampled certain demographics. Why were they even published, then? They function as unpaid advertising for one campaign or another. If the poll is guaranteed publication, isn't this an inducement to sloppiness? Someone who knows this business please explain.

I do not like the Gallup polling methods (especially in this case) for several reasons. 1) they count registered voters--they are unreliable voters and usually skew Democrat. 2) They then went and oversampled more Democrats via an interview method. Both of these reasons lead me to believe the Gallup poll is imprecise. Obama may indeed be ahead--he probably is--but not by that much.


One last thing: Obama over polls by about 2-3% consistently and has even since the Dem primaries.

You mean city of course. Alaska only has one.

Now Clint, I'm sure Fairbanks would consider itself a city as well as Anchorage. I visited a rather large oil refinery and a university campus there last summer, and it looked like a city to me.

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