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Reply #63: Would like to agree , but... [View All]

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bruised Donating Member (43 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Mar-23-05 01:20 PM
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63. Would like to agree , but...
I was convinced by this argument for about 2 hours yesterday.
I hate to say it, but having thought over it and worked on the figures I am now less convinced for 2 reasons.

1 /the calculations are based on the fixed (present CNN exit polls that have been fiddled. If you take the 12.20 exit polls which were "less fixed", the figures are much less convincing. (I agree that that serves them right for fiddling with all the figures)

2/The argument relies on the fact that respondents remember accurately how they voted 4 years ago. I remember reading somewhere else (a discussion on exit polls in the UK) that the question about how you voted in the last election (several years before) is the one to which the replies are the most unreliable. It is possible that quite a few (5% or more?) either think they voted differently or don't really remember.

OK you say that on average those errors would tend to cancel each other out (same number wrongly stating they voted for Gore as those wrongly stating they voted for Bush). But who knows maybe (some) people are more likely to incorrectly think they voted for the winner than the loser last time. You can be sure that the answer from NEP would go something like that.

As you know I have spent a lot of time like you on the exit polls, and would love the smoking gun to be found. I think this argument is interesting but I doubt it's the smoking gun. It needs more data like indications from other years about the accuracy of the "HOW I VOTED LAST TIME" replies.

But we should not give up, the smoking gun may be in all those figures, this could be it, or it could be something else. We may still be missing the obvious.

What is clear is that NEP either
1/ lied again in their report about what the exit polls were really stating. or
2/ deliberately sent out vote predictions that were not backed up by any of their data, neither their "best GEO survey indicator"
nor their so called "composite estimate" which is based partly on the exit polls and partly on the opinion polls of the previous week!

This became clear to for Colorado - simply because I have an original document with the Vote estimate on it. The vote estimates were confidential and in general not published, neither are they in the NEP report!
You can check out the data on - (then Select Colorado from the CNN 02/11 interface.

I am still trying to figure out whether what they did in Colorado was typical or whether whether there is a particular reason why they would
pretend that their Colorado Presidential exit poll was spot on.
(You may remember that I pointed out way back in January that
it was strange that the Senatorial exit poll was spot on but not the presidential - especially as it was in reality the same respondents!

I'll try and spend more time on checking that out.
Keep up the good work.
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