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Reply #267: well, it is important to check facts [View All]

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OnTheOtherHand Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jun-02-06 12:12 PM
Response to Reply #253
267. well, it is important to check facts
If we are going to cite Jimmy Carter as an election monitor -- and I think we have it on record that the Carter Center wouldn't monitor a U.S. election because the system is too broken! -- then we might look to the Carter Center to see what it has to say about exit polling.

Jennifer McCoy on exit polls in Venezuela, 2004: "In countries as polarised as Venezuela, exit polls are risky. They require those conducting them to avoid bias in choosing whom to query, to avoid socio-economic bias in their dress and speech, and to work in a wide variety of neighbourhoods. They also require voters to tell the truthdespite intimidation and strong peer pressure on both sides. Any of these elements could have been lacking."

Carter Center recommendations for Mexico, 1994: "Avoid exit polls, which are unreliable in a climate of suspicion and which will create a negative atmosphere if the voters feel they are being watched. Quick counts, however, are essential, but they must be well coordinated and the public needs to be informed of their significance."

Carter Center reflecting on its 1994 recommendation with reference to the 2000 Mexican election: "In 1994, The Carter Center had
recommended that exit polls not be used for two reasons. First, and most important, voters needed to learn that their votes were secret. If it became known that people were asking how they voted, that would compromise their vote. Secondly, we felt exit polls would be unreliable precisely because of voter mistrust, and, therefore, would be misleading."

Carter Center and National Democratic Institute observers on Peru, 2001: "In addition, the observers encouraged the use of quick counts on election day to build confidence in the results, noting that these statistical projections of the vote totals are more accurate than exit polls."

OK? I'm not saying that the Carter Center is dead set against exit polls, but it looks a bit different to me than it did to you. I didn't see anywhere where they actually said that exit polls were a good idea.

As for Ukraine in 2004, there were many, many indicators of fraud. Here is the 15-page international observers' report, which does not mention the exit polls:

As I pointed out somewhere else, there were two exit polls in the 2004 Ukraine run-off, and they differed from each other by more than the U.S. exit polls differed from the official tally. So, no, I cannot agree that "Exit polling is remarkably reliable and accurate." Transparency is paramount.

I bet we can find some other points to agree on -- maybe in a different thread.
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