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Sunday, September 30, 2012

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Bill Fleming

Superb essay from our "reasonable" pal, KB.

Gotta hand it to him, his ability to spin is singularly impressive. Somehoe behind a firewall of seeming rationality and acceptance of the inevitable, he still manages to maintain a strong position of denial on two key fronts:

1. That the polls are indeed accurate and predictive and
2. Even so the GOP will try to steal the election any way they can.

Good job, KB. You're always a fun read.

I'm going to go over it a few more times just to appreciate the subtlty of the pivots.

Donald Pay

We can count on a huge Republican steal the election push, so Obama is going to have to have a 3-5 percent cushion before anything is safe. Republicans have already been exposed in several swing states, where Republicans hired a firm that paid people to register voters. The result is a massive registration fraud. Other Republican elections officials in these states are refusing to register Democrats, or throwing their registrations away. This may account for the skewed registration numbers KB cites. Of course, there will be the usual attempts to snarl the vote in minority and college precincts. That's just the normal way Republicans act in any election, and there is no reason to expect that to change.

Wally

I see the liberal shills are quick to respond to the depressing reality for Obama.

Excellent post reporting the realities behind the skewed polls.

larry kurtz

This is the only the second time since I could vote back in '72 that I have been so embarrassed by a Republican candidate and so frightened by that party at the same time. Thank Goddess for the Second Amendment so I can defend myself after the President mops the floor of history with Willard Romney and the right wing shows its true hatred for America.

duggersd

Already liberals are accusing Republicans of stealing an election. One is even pointing to voter fraud, which according to his previous posts do not exist. I really do not know what to believe of the polls. However at this time, there has not even been one debate. Considering the state of the economy, the outright lying of the Administration about Benghazi, scandals such as Fast & Furious in which US citizens were killed and countless Mexicans have been murdered, it is difficult to see how this President can even think about running. Almost all of the polls show Obama losing support in just about every demographic, yet he is leading. It makes little sense, other than there is too large of a group of people in this country who depends upon getting something from the government. If the Fourth Estate did its job, I do not believe we would be seeing the polls as they are.
Speaking of polls, I had wondered why pollsters were willing to put out polls they knew were based upon faulty assumptions. I read an interesting article about the bandwagon effect.

the bob.bob

Do you actually believe this horse-pucky?

Despite the best efforts of the Party of No, Obama has righted the Ship of State, put the Economy back on the right track, stabilized our bankrupt foreign policy, took out the guy responsible for 9/11 and made the first significant improvement in our Health Care laws in decades.

What have Republicans done? Made up paranoid fantasies about Muslim Socialists, Birther nonsense, and non-existent voter fraud (except their own), tried to pass laws allowing State-mandated rape of women who need reproductive heath care, laws allowing Religious organizations to impose their own religious doctrine on non-believers, dismissed 47% of Americans (including the elderly, veterans, the disabled) as irresponsible social parasites.

Americans know who crashed the economy. They know who obstructed Obama from fixing the mess.

Obama 2012!

Fear, Hatred, Distortion, Distraction and Division is all Republicans have to offer America

Stan Gibilisco

In my opinion, the people who are most to blame for crashing the economy are those bought more expensive houses than they could afford, and those who all but hoodwinked them into doing it.

unicorn4711

For me the biggest issue is several senate races, MA in particular. If Brown loses, and he may, Warren will have that seat for as long as she wants it. She'll the strongest critic of the Wall Street insider system. As it is now, it's hard to claim Democrats and Republicans differ much on Wall Street regulation. Both sides draw heavily from Harvard Business School and Goldman Sachs.

duggersd

bob.bob,the people responsible for taking out the guy who was behind 9/11 is the US military with the SEALS in particular. The only thing President Obama did was to OK the operation, after apparently backing out several times. Can you honestly tell me there is a president would not have OK'd the operation?
If you want to continue to have an economy based on people taking from the government, then vote Democrat. If you want an economy based upon people working, then vote Republican. There are all kinds of people responsible for the meltdown, and two of them should be in jail. Barney Frank and Chris Dodd have escaped any repercussions of their actions. Most of your other stuff is made up. Are there people from the Republican party who might have their names on those things? Yes. Did the Republican party back those things? No. You sound like President Obama who makes stuff up.

Ken Blanchard

Bill: your dismissal would be more impressive if you bothered with arguments and evidence. Since I posted the above, the recent round of polls has shifted back toward a smaller Obama lead. I just looked at the CNN numbers, which give Obama three percent over Romney. Their sample of likely voters was composed of 29% Republicans, 32% Independents, and 37% Democrats. Do you really think those are realistic numbers this year?

I acknowledged wishful thinking but anyone interested in thinking at all would have to acknowledge my point: something is wrong in the polls. It just can't be true that Obama is losing independents by a large margin AND that Republican voter enthusiasm is much stronger than the same among Democrats AND that Obama is going to win all the swing states by large margins. Yet that is what the average of all the relevant polls shows.

As I said, I know the difference between wishful thinking and analysis. Do you?

Stan Gibilisco

You know, I'm at a loss to analyze all this stuff any more. I share some of Larry's sentiments about the Republican Party at this time, but I fear the Democrats just as much if not more. Why, just a few days ago, a prominent Democrat seriously suggested that the federal government ought to bail out all the states' floundering pension plans. It's as if some of these Dems either have a complete lack of concern for the deficit and the debt and its consequences, or else (and I hesitate to make an accusation like this) they want to destroy the U.S. economy and build some sort of hypothetical utopia on the ashes. Never mind all the human suffering that would entail; all these starving and freezing urchins would presumably constitute mere bumps in the road.

I'd say something more like tire spikes, but what do I know?

My guts tell me Obama will win the Presidential election by a narrow popular majority but a significant electoral majority. The House will stay in Republican hands, but possibly by a narrower margin than is the case now. The Senate -- aha, that is where the rubber will meet the road, tire spikes and all. If the Republicans can gain control of the Senate, then Barack Obama will be forced to compromise. Otherwise we'll have four more years of gridlock. But if the Dems get control of everything, watch out! In that case I might really follow through on my bug-out plans for fear of a complete collapse of the currency and a worldwide depression of unprecedented magnitude.

Have a nice day!

Ken Blanchard

Stan: Obama, if he wins, will be forced to compromise either way. The Democrats may control the Senate or not; however, they will not command a veto proof majority. Unfortunately, compromise requires negotiation. The President shows very little aptitude for that.

Bill Fleming

Not trying to impress you, KB. Sorry, that's not important to me. The point of my post was to pay you a compliment. Take it or leave it.

Bill Fleming

Here are a couple of links to support my points. As if you didn't already know about these things. Hence my compliment on the literary coyness with which you attempt to mask and at the same time feedyour party's mass neurosis:

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Elections/2012/0929/Potential-voter-registration-fraud-in-Florida-GOP-s-own-ACORN-scandal

http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/09/29/poll-averages-have-no-history-of-consistent-partisan-bias/

Bill Fleming

Ask and ye shall receive, KB. Again, I only provide these to support my claim that you are indeed a master of spin. And of course, to honor your request for specifics. But fear not. I certainly don't expect you to be impressed. ;^) Anyway, that will do it for now. I'm sure you and your readers can use google as well as (if not better than) I can.

http://www.progressohio.org/blog/2011/12/report-on-republican-gerrymandering-of-congressional-redistricting-released-secret-meetings-secret-p.html

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-06-21/republicans-voter-suppression-project-grinds-on.html

Bill Fleming

KB asks: "Their sample of likely voters was composed of 29% Republicans, 32% Independents, and 37% Democrats. Do you really think those are realistic numbers this year?"

Short answer: Yes.

Longer answer: It would perhaps be instructive to have a more in-depth discussion of polling methodology. I've not reviewed the CNN methodology or cross tabs, and so couldn't offer much more than a seat-of-the-pants guess as to what the proportions mean. If the primary qualifier was "likely voter" the party affiliation wouldn't really come into play. i.e One of the things being measured is which party has the most people who say they are "likely" voters. Perhaps, on this particular poll, the R's aren't identifying themselves as being "likely" in as large a proportion as Indy's and Dems.

In any case, the link I provided to Nate Silver's essay explains much more than I will attempt to here. It's a pretty good read for anyone really interested in how polling really works. Here's the link again:
http://fivethirtyeight.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/09/29/poll-averages-have-no-history-of-consistent-partisan-bias/

Bill Fleming

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Political_party_strength_in_U.S._states

As per the above linked Wiki article, here are the rough party affiliation proportions:

2010
Dems 31%, Repubs 29%, Indys 38%

2011
Dems 31%, Repubs 27%, Indys 40%

2012
Dems ? , Repubs ?, Indys ?

Bill Fleming

And apparently, because of the GOP registration scandal, they won't be signing up any more new Rs in these states any time soon:
http://www.mediaite.com/tv/rachel-maddow-stunned-by-gop-ceasing-voter-registration-in-swing-states-after-fraud-allegations/

Ken Blanchard

Bill: every time you post here I take it as a compliment. You are an intelligent interlocutor and a gentleman. I am running short on those.

As for spin, I doubt that I am indeed a master of it. I won't deny the occasionally commission. I am pretty sure that you suck at it. You think that an 8% Democratic turnout advantage is reasonable (a howler) and then show me wiki numbers where the Dems lead by 3 or 4%. One of us needs a refresher course in basic math.

Bill Fleming

LOL. Thanks Ken, as much for the kudos as for saying I suck. You sly dog.

Okay let's look at the math of the poll you reference without trying to read into it.

29% Republican (that's 2 points over the Wiki 2011 report), 32% Indy (that's 8 points UNDER the 2012 report) and 37% Dems (6 points over the Wiki).

Looks to me like it's the Indys who are grossly underrepresented, and that the net difference between R's and Dems is 4 points.

But again, the sample represents those willing to take a survey.

That's why I think the poll is realistic.

Because I think it says what it says.

Oftentimes the meaning of polls like this is in the internal crosstabs, not the topline numbers.

And that would perhaps be a more meaningful discussion. But alas, it wouldn't serve to prove your point, so, regardless of the teaching opportunity it presents you, dear Professor (little Scott Brown dig) you have chosen to forgo the lesson in favor of whining about how everybody's beating up on those poor Republicans.

Priceless. ;^)

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