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OUR LAST AND BEST HOPE: Beat on Edison Media Research and Mitofsky

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Shalom Donating Member (832 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 06:39 PM
Original message
OUR LAST AND BEST HOPE: Beat on Edison Media Research and Mitofsky
Edited on Tue Jan-11-05 06:54 PM by Shalom
There's an intriuging article by Lynn Landes in Online Journal that emphasizes how the American people have been stiffed by the National Election Pool (NEP) and it's two exit poll providers, Edison Media Research and Mitofsky International:

One need not agree with the interesting hypotheses proposed by Ms. Landes to note how useful her efforts have been, even though as a single individual, she has merely scratched the surface of the stonewall that has been erected around the exit poll process.

It suggests that a concerted effort by thousands to contact staff members of these organizations, could put some more pressure on them to come clean. For example, the web site for Edison Media Research lists the following individuals on their management team:

Larry Rosin
Joe Lenski
Rob Farbman
Melissa DeCesare
Jason Hollins
Sean Ross
Tom Webster
Deena Hollander
Sabrina Benton

These are real people, who I guess work in Somerville, New Jersey (based upon the phone number on their web site). Without harrassing such people, one would hope that one of them might be willing to share some of the vital information on their sources and methods that we are unrightfully being deprived of.

I've focused a bit on Edison partly because Mitofsky seems to get a lot more attention, but this kind of focus should definitely be applied to both organizations, from top to bottom.

Going back to the info in the Online Journal Article, it cites information from the NEP website that 5,000 poll workers were hired to conduct the exit polls.


A final amusing tibdit from Larry Rosin, President of Edison Media Research (would be funnier if it wasn't really so sad):

"In Ohio, for instance, Cuyahoga County (Cleveland) tends to report extremely late. So there is a chance one will see Bush leading in the vote count throughout the night, only to be eclipsed by Kerry at the wire as heavily Democratic Clevelands votes come in."

Finding out more about these exit polls is our last best chance to demonstrate that something really rotten happened in the United States of America on Nov. 2 2004. The tracks of the computer hackers may have long been erased, and the more our scholarly research demonstrates statistical evidence of fraud, the more they will laugh at us.

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Up2Late Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 07:14 PM
Response to Original message
1. When they do an exit poll, do they take down the names?
...of the people that take the poll?

Couldn't E/M do follow up polls to "recheck the numbers they put out Nov, 2?

But check this post from Slate's Smoking Gun < >

Wednesday, January 5, 2005

"The only ones confused were the leakers and the bloggers." Chief exit pollster Warren Mitofsky responds (via email) to yesterday's "smoking gun" item:

The so-called smoking gun you wrote about was in the hands of every subscriber to our national election poll throughout election day. What took you and the others two months to locate it? At least a dozen news organizations have had this smoking gun since 11/2.

Second, the complex displays you ridicule, which were the source used by the leakers for the numbers that got posted by bloggers on election day, are not the tables you and others discovered. I stand by my original statement. Had you asked me I would have told you as much.

Third, if you doubt that we warned the NEP members on election day why don't you ask one of them? Or is ridicule with your eyes closed your preferred method of sounding smart?

And lastly, if my clients were as misinformed as you seem to think how come none of them announced an incorrect winner from the 120 races we covered that day? It seems that the only ones confused were the leakers and the bloggers. I guess I should include you in that list, but I'll bet you don't make mistakes. We have never claimed that all the exit polls were accurate.

Then again, neither is your reporting.
warren mitofsky

Boy, am I feeling less guilty that I didn't call Mitofsky before I posted that item (which was a bloggy thing to do, I admit). There doesn't seem to be any significant factual dispute at all. Mitofsky doesn't deny that his organization sent out erroneous data as late as 7:30 on election day showing Kerry winning nationally--indeed, he confirms it, saying it "was in the hands of every subscriber to our national election poll."

To the extent it's more than a macho taunt, Mitofsky's Paragraph #1 suggests the "smoking gun" couldn't have been all that important or else it would have leaked earlier. Not a powerful argument! The number of people clamoring for hot exit poll docs is pretty small, and Mitofsky's been barking loudly about "stolen" information. Maybe his loyal subscribers decided not to leak. And I'm not Bob Woodward. But Steve Coll of the Washington Post did complain about the bogus info in public.

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democraticinsurgent Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 07:20 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. we didn't take names
we asked every nth person to do the survey; in my case, it was every 7th person. no names were taken.
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Shalom Donating Member (832 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 07:23 PM
Response to Reply #1
4. That's the Idea: FIND THE PEOPLE...
Which means we stop letting Warren Mitofsky act as the spokesman and plays games with our brains - the point of the Landes article is that we have absolutely no information about WHO, WHAT, WHEN, or WHERE about these exit polls.

If there were 5,000 pollsters out on Nov. 2, I insist that we should be able to find one who will talk to us. It's not like they work for the FBI and the CIA, or is it ?
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democraticinsurgent Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 07:18 PM
Response to Original message
2. i was one of the 5000
and am a regular DU'er. In fact I found out about the opportunity to do the exit poll thru a post here.

I have posted this on other threads as well:

- the coordination and logistics end of this, as it related directly to my job as an exit pollster, was outstanding. I received phone training, plenty of materials to look over, and phone calls after the training to make sure I had everything I needed.

- on election day, I made three calls to report my surveys. each call was taken right away, i was not put on hold.

- i used the 2 sided survey. i was not aware of the longer version until recently

- in my precinct, if i recall correctly i turned in 13 completed questionnaires. if my precinct was average-sized, 5000*13=65,000 completed surveys. which is what was supposedly done, according one count.

What else do you want to know?
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Shalom Donating Member (832 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 07:26 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. Who Did you Work For ? All that training for 13 responses ?, +
Edited on Tue Jan-11-05 07:27 PM by Shalom
What was the name of the person who hired you ?

What was the name of the person who trained you ?

Do you know other poll workers by name ?
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democraticinsurgent Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 07:40 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. Edison-Mitofsky, but paycheck was from Blum & Weprin Associates, a Manhattan polling firm. I am assuming they were subcontracted to manage the exit pollsters.

I don't remember any of the names, there were several phone calls. The woman who took me thru the training was, I am sure, herself being trained. She had to have help from someone who was with her a couple of times.

I did not know any other pollworkers. I met a woman at my precinct who was there to do a second job after the polls closed. She was a young college student. I don't know exactly what she did, but I believe she was there to get final/actual vote totals from the precinct. I gave her my email address because she was writing a paper on her experience, but she never contacted me, unfortunately.
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Fly by night Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 07:45 PM
Response to Original message
7. My 11/4 letter to Mitofsky and Edison (and I'm still holding my breath)
My first tentative step on the tortuous "election theft" road that we have all been on since the election was to write a letter (on 11/4) to Mitofsky and Edison, which I copied to all the MSM who were sponsoring the exit polls. I am posting my letter in its entirety, in part to show how naive I was just two months ago that the disconnect between the exit polls and the "reported" vote had a simple (non-sinister) explanation. Since sending this initial letter, I have sent Mitofsky and Edison two more letters (also cc'ed to the MSM). To date, I have received no response of any kind. IMHO, the exit pollers were clearly in on the fraud, and TruthIsAll's analysis that Republicans were oversampled, based on the raw exit poll data, confirms that for me. (His and others' analyses have also helped answer some of the four questions I posed to Mitofsky/Edison in this letter, and their answers also help confirm fraud.)

Our only hope with the exit poll companies is that there is someone on the inside with a speck of moral/patriotic fiber who will come forward. My guess, however, is that their pre-employment screening procedures default for malleable, amoral slime. I do think it would be worthwhile to get close to the researchers who conducted the exit polls in 2000 and 2002, who left this enterprise themselves, leaving a vacuum that slime filled.

Now here's my 11/4 letter, written when I was so much younger:

(Dear Mitofsky and Edison),

For the past two days, I have been hearing commentators in all media (including those networks which funded your activity) criticize your two companies, saying that the exit polling that you conducted was seriously flawed because it did not more accurately reflect the final outcome. Some have even called for ending the exit polling process entirely because of its apparent inaccuracy. I count myself among the many people who went to bed early Wednesday morning confident that John Kerry would win -- based on your exit polling information provided on a state-by-state basis by CNN on-line in the states whose results were still in question -- only to wake up to find that Bush had won again. I imagine that your companies are unhappy and uncomfortable with this negative media attention and attacks on your competence and credibility.

However, there are a number of us out here today who are wondering whether the problem was with your exit polling efforts or with the ways in which votes were "counted" in this election. For several years, many of us have worried about the electronic voting machine (EVM) phenomenon and its potential for fraud and abuse. It seems to many of us today that the results of your exit polling process provides us an opportunity to determine whether the exit polling results in states using EVM (particularly in Republican-controlled states) were less accurate in predicting the actual vote than states without EVM or with EVM that include a paper trail.

A number of commentators on-line over the past two days have suggested that these differences exist and are apparent in their own comparisons of your exit polling results and the final "reported" votes in several critical states. Some on-line commentators have pointed out that your exit polling results were highly accurate in states without EVM or with EVM and a paper trail compared with states with EVM and no paper trail. You -- and you alone -- are in a unique position to address these questions and to inform the American people about the answers to those questions.

Specifically, I think that you need to answer the following questions for the integrity of the exit polling process, for the future of your companies and for the sake of the American people:

1) What were the differences (if any) in the predictability of your exit polling process (i.e., how close your exit polling predictions were to the final vote) between states without electronic voting machines (EVM), states with EVM and a "paper trail" and states with EVM and no "paper trail"?

2) What were the differences (if any) in the predictability of your exit polling process for the above three categories between battleground and non-battleground states?

3) What were the differences (if any) in the predictability of your exit polling process between states whose election process was controlled by Republicans and those controlled by Democrats?

4) Much has been made about the differences in voter preferences based on the time of day that voters went to the polls. Did you find any evidence that Democrats/Kerry supporters were more likely to vote earlier than Republicans/Bush supporters? If there were differences, how did they shake out between battleground and non-battleground states?

I sincerely hope that you will seek a fully formed analysis of the above questions and that you will share that analysis with the American people. Most importantly, if you find anything in your analysis which suggests that your exit polling process was less predictive in states with EVM but no "paper trail" and/or that there were differences in predictability in those states based on which political party controlled the election process, it is incumbent on you to make this information public in order to allow the American people to decide if our election process has been high-jacked -- as too many of us fear. To remain silent on these issues will foment even more mistrust within the American people about the sanctity and security of our voting process. It will also further embolden the anti-democratic forces that are afoot in our current body politic to continue to high-jack the election process, because they may have gotten away with it yet again.

I sincerely appreciate the work that you do and (as a social scientist myself) am concerned that the credibility of the exit polling methodology is being challenged when the problem may be deeper (and much more serious) than simply one of flawed methodology. In closing, however, I must tell you that the most distressing thing I have read since the election is this concluding paragraph in Richard Morin's article in today's Washington Post, "New Woes Surface in Use of Estimates": "After the (exit polling) survey is completed and the votes are counted, the exit poll results are adjusted to reflect the actual vote, which in theory improves the accuracy of all the exit poll results, including the breakdown of the vote by age, gender and other characteristics."

Nothing would distress me more than for evidence of illegal manipulation of the election process to be covered up by adjustments in the exit polling results based on the "reported" vote. Please allow us to see and compare the differences between your final exit polling predictions (unadjusted by the final vote counts) and the actual "reported" votes in every state. Allow us to learn -- and to discuss and (as a country) to act on -- the answers to the four questions I have listed above. Please do this to salvage the reputations of your companies, to dampen criticism of the exit polling methodology and to restore faith in the integrity of our election process. Please do so for the sake of this country and for the future of democracy worldwide. Thank you. (Me)

Once again,I think appealing to Mitofsky/Edison at this point is as useful as writing the MSM to ask them whether they have any journalists in their employ. Picking your nose would be a better use of your energies, I am afraid.
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Shalom Donating Member (832 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-11-05 10:14 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. You Gave Them A Chance to Redeem Themselves....
Edited on Tue Jan-11-05 10:15 PM by Shalom
and they totally failed.

I hope you hold on to your statement, because I hope that someday it will stand as an eloquent reminder of our best hopes and aspirations.

You don't need affirmation from these creeps, and you no longer need to hold your breath.

Go back to breathing the fresh air of freedom.
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Up2Late Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 03:24 AM
Response to Original message
9. I don't know how many of you followed the links on Slate
until you get this link < >

But, if you want to see the blatant manipulation of the E/M Exit polls, check out this link < />

Call me a "Conspiracy Theorist," but I really doubt it would take until 1:24pm on November 3rd (That's 18 HOURS after the 2nd set of Election Day exit pole numbers at 7:34pm), :wtf: if they where NOT faking (or correcting as the Bush Cabal would say) the final numbers.

I'd encourage ALL of you to copy and save the pif files from that page, just in case they get "Accidentally" deleted off the Internet.

If nothing else, their is more than enough evidence for a conspiracy conviction for at least the Mitofsky folks. :evilgrin:
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flyarm Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 03:59 AM
Response to Original message
10. i don't know if this will help but...
i was a poll watcher for the kerry campaign on nov 2nd. in florida pinellas county.. we had to call in the numbers of votes from each machine at specific times during the day. we were calling in to the kerry hdqtrs here in pinellas to paid kerry staff, they in turn were calling the numbers into kerry hdqtrs in washington.

the precinct i worked also had a challanger/poll watcher from the * campaign the man who was with * campaign who was at my precinct was an attorney. he also had a time table of times to call votes in.
The attorney for * came late ..he also came with the supervisor for the precint ( precinct captain? i dont know his title but he oversees several precinct voting places)

we kerry poll watchers had to go to each machine and take down the number of votes that were registered on each machine.
i took dilegent notes on everything, and i was making sure people who were not in the books were at 1. the right precinct and 2. if they were and were being declined to vote that they got to do a provisional ballot..

i took dilegent records of each voter given a provisonal ballot and any problems with machines throughout the day, and i even kept records of how many people came to the wrong precinct and had to be sent elsewhere.
unfortunately the paid staffers for pinellas kerry campaign took all my notes and forms when the polls closed and i returned to kerry hdqtrs, hindsight i so wish i had made copies..but i did not..
the following day the paid staffer was already gone from our area and no one knows what happened to all my notes and records of early vote and general election.

but i assure you kerry campaign was getting the numbers of voters on each machine..with the numbers of the machines ( serial numbers) and the numbers of voters per machine.

sorry i am not a computer wiz, but as i read stuff here i wonder if i have info that could be valuable or those of you working so hard and who do have the rather than wonder if any of this is significant..i will error is throwing this stuff out there...

i appologise if this is redundant, and useless .
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troubleinwinter Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 11:09 AM
Response to Reply #10
11. It is absolutely fascinating!
Thanks, fly! It sounds like you provided very valuable information to the campaign. Whether they actually did anything with it, we can't know, but you did great work.
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understandinglife Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jan-12-05 11:39 AM
Response to Original message
12. Cross posting one person's opinion and warning....
Edited on Wed Jan-12-05 11:39 AM by understandinglife
By 2am EST, 3 Nov 2004, I had already adopted a very simple perspective on any subsequent 'exit poll' data released by any pollster or those who pay them.

Unless all relevant information was retrieved by subpoena including all data, analysis, internal communications at ME, communications with the media customers... -- zero credibility.

Unless all personnel involved in polling, analysis and communications of results were required to make statements under oath -- zero credibility.

And, even under those conditions, would expect all materials to be scrutinized by independent, non-partisan information experts, statisticians, and forensics experts.

In other words, when it was obvious to me and many others, following the events at CNN and elsewhere after ~ 11pm EST 2 Nov 2004, that something inexplicable was happening, I decided I'd consider everything suspect until the full force of the law and independent investigative experts were brought into the matter.

Events of the past 2+ months have only strengthened my perception of intentional manipulation of the purpose and veracity of 'exit polls.' However, that's all it is; my opinion and its not what I do for a living so I may be way, way incorrect.


"Prove My Vote Counts, Now"

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