Those Rasmussen Polls

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Polling is becoming increasingly meaningless. They largely miss the younger and more technological astute voters who aren’t bored or credulous enough to answer the phone when pollsters call, and of course, many of these voters never answer a land line at all. I can’t remember the last time I answered my land line, which only exists at all because the land line comes with my internet connection.

Rasmussen, for example, is often accused of favoring Republican and conservative candidates.

Most recently, Rasmussen declared a 4 point difference between Manchin-D and Raese-R in the West Virginia Senate race. They labeled the race a “toss up.” With 98% of precincts reporting,  Manchin has won by 10 points. It wasn’t even close.

In Colorado, Rasmussen had reported the Colorado governor’s race a toss up with Hickenlooper-D within the margin of error against Tancredo-I. (Tancredo was put in by the right-wing establishment after the GOP primary voters nominated someone they didn’t like.) With one-third of precincts reporting, Hickenlooper is winning by 16 points. Not even close. With more results, it could tighten to 10 points, but Rasmussen was WAY off on this one too.

On the other hand, they did get the Kentucky Senate race right where Rand Paul won easily by 12 points.

Rasmussen got some races right, but it’s hard to know which polls are correct by coincidence, and which were the result of sound polling research. But a method based on calling people on home phones seems dated at best.

10:10 pm on November 2, 2010
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