10-18-2012, 10:41 PM
Join Date: Oct 2005
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Re: Mormonism No Longer a Cult
Originally Posted by Vincent
I guess it depends which Americans you poll
Gallup vs. the World
The Gallup national tracking poll now shows a very strong lead for Mitt Romney. As of Wednesday, he was ahead by six points among likely voters. Mr. Romneyís advantage grew further, to seven points, when Gallup updated its numbers on Thursday afternoon....
However, its results are deeply inconsistent with the results that other polling firms are showing in the presidential race, and the Gallup poll has a history of performing very poorly when that is the case....
Usually, when a poll is an outlier relative to the consensus, its results turn out badly.
You do not need to look any further than Gallupís track record over the past two election cycles to find a demonstration of this.
In 2008, the Gallup poll put Mr. Obama 11 points ahead of John McCain on the eve of that Novemberís election.
That was tied for Mr. Obamaís largest projected margin of victory among any of the 15 or so national polls that were released just in advance of the election. The average of polls put Mr. Obama up by about seven points.
The average did a good job; Mr. Obama won the popular vote by seven points. The Gallup poll had a four-point miss, however.
In 2010, Gallup put Republicans ahead by 15 points on the national Congressional ballot, higher than other polling firms, which put Republicans an average of eight or nine points ahead instead.
In fact, Republicans won the popular vote for the United States House by about seven percentage points ó fairly close to the average of polls, but representing another big miss for Gallup.
Apart from Gallupís final poll not having been especially accurate in recent years, it has often been a wild ride to get there. Their polls, for whatever reason, have often found implausibly large swings in the race.
In 2000, for example, Gallup had George W. Bush 16 points ahead among likely voters in polling it conducted in early August. By Sept. 20, about six weeks later, they had Al Gore up by 10 points instead: a 26-point swing toward Mr. Gore over the course of a month and a half. No other polling firm showed a swing remotely that large.
Then in October 2000, Gallup showed a 14-point swing toward Mr. Bush over the course of a few days, and had him ahead by 13 points on Oct. 27 ó just 10 days before an election that ended in a virtual tie....
Itís much more likely that Gallup is wrong and everyone else is right than the other way around.