No one knows for sure what will happen on Election Day on November 6, but the Rasmussen polling firm, which has a very good record for accuracy, shows former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney three points ahead of President Barack Obama, 48 percent to 45 percent, in today’s national tracking poll. Rasmussen adds that Obama’s convention bounce has disappeared.
The polling firm notes that it’s too early tell whether the anti-American violence in the Middle East will have any political consequences for either candidate’s fortunes.
Many of the polls hyped up by the mainstream media in general operate with flawed methodology in that they tend to oversample Democrats and undersample Independents and Republicans and also based their results on registered voters rather than likely voters. Such polls are using a 2008 turnout model which many observers believe is inappropriate. Sampling could also be effected by voters simply refusing to answer the phone, not revealing their true intentions to the pollsters, and so on. The mainstream media obviously has its own agenda in terms of how it publicizes polling results and which ones it chooses to report on.
National polling, however, is far less significant than head-to-head matchups in so-called battleground states where it appears to be a tight race. A presidential election is a state-by-state contest, of course, with the winner determined by the Electoral College. Despite the headlines, no poll should should necessarily be accepted at face value without at least examining the underlying metrics.
Campaigns and parties typically conduct internal (i.e., private) polling but those results are kept under wraps unless leaked.
Last month, two University of Colorado professors, who have been correct in every presidential election since 1980, predicted that Mitt Romney would win the presidency using their own Electoral College simulator. The controversial pundit Dick Morris, who guided Bill Clinton to the White House in two elections, has been saying for months that Romney will prevail in the general election.
Do you pay any attention to polls?