Friday, October 10, 2008

Poll Dancers

From Open Left:

Here are the latest electoral projections from independent, small media electoral forecasting websites:

Election Projection: Obama 364-174 Obama 349, McCain 174, 15 tied
Fivethirtyeight: Obama 347.6-190.4 McCain Obama 320, McCain 158, Toss-up 60
Real Clear Politics: Obama 277, McCain 158, Toss-up 103

There are many more, but I'll stop there. The key point is that all small media election projection websites, including the Republican Election Projection and Real Clear Politics, have Obama over 270 electoral votes. This is because polls now objectively show that Obama is well over 270 electoral votes. However, none of the big, and so-called liberal, media websites show Obama over 270 right now. Every single one is even more favorable to McCain than Real Clear Politics:

MSNBC: Obama 264-174 McCain
CNN: Obama 264-174 McCain
New York Times: Obama 260--200 McCain

None of these websites can admit what is patently obvious to even Republican poll watchers right now: Obama is over 270 outside the margin of error. The inability of these big media sites to simply admit reality--reality that is evident in their own reporting about McCain playing from well behind right now--is pathetic.

Maybe they are afraid of being accused of pro-Obama bias (probably). Maybe they are just biased toward McCain (possibly). Maybe they just suck at electoral forecasting (definitely). Maybe they are invested in a close campaign (absolutely). Whatever it is, you would be well served to never, ever listen to big media for election forecasts and horserace information. They just don't have it. Stick to the small media independent websites, since we pretty only exist because the big media websites suck so bad at this stuff. So much information is publicly available now that a few nerds obsessed with poll numbers are much better sources for election information than you will every get from big media. The lack of depth in horserace coverage on major news websites is actually how I discovered the blogosphere myself back in 2002.


Jim Finn said...

I watch a lot of CNN and MSNBC. It is true that they are mysteriously "stuck" on 265 electoral votes for Obama. But every analyst says that if the election were held today, Obama would win. And they show you by moving the states around how difficult it is for McCain to win. I think they are a) trying to keep their ratings up and b) trying to adhere to that old-time model of don't call the election til its done. It might be helping a bit. The worst that could happen would be for everyone to assume Obama is going to sail through this election and stay home on election day. Also, Fox news is in a full-on panic. They are saying that all the states where Obama is up are the states investigating ACORN.

Benjamin Hussein Coonley said...

He needs a big lead to compensate for the "Bradley Effect." Obama's poll numbers may or may not inflated. Rachel Maddow has an interesting interview with Melissa Harris Lacewell: