The National  Memo Logo

Smart. Sharp. Funny. Fearless.

Monday, December 09, 2019 {{ new Date().getDay() }}

If you followed the punditocracy’s conventional wisdom in 2012, you were likely surprised by President Obama’s popular vote margin—which is now 3.7 points and climbing.  Despite the fact that President Obama consistently led Mitt Romney– and by significant margins in the battleground states where a close race would likely be decided—pollsters and pundits presupposed a very tight race. Joe Scarborough pronounced, “…Anybody that thinks that this race is anything but a tossup right now… should be kept away from typewriters, computers, laptops and microphones for the next 10 days.”  The Wall Street Journal proclaimed “Obama and Romney deadlocked.”  The Economist asserted the race was “about as close as it could be.”  Most other media and pundits thought so, too.  Except us.

Our final Democracy Corps poll (completed two days before Election Day) showed the race 49 to 45 percent –an unrounded margin of 3.8 points.  With other public polls still showing the race tied or Romney ahead, our poll was an outlier.

We were so confident in our results, we put our reputations on the line in the waning days of the campaign.  We were confident we had it right because we believed that the national poll tracking averages were likely underrepresenting Obama’s vote.  The main issue was cell phones and the changing demographics that most other pollsters miscalculated.   Those pollsters did not reach the new America.  Plain and simple.

Our accuracy in this election reflected years of intense study and a series of careful decisions about demographic and turnout trends among pivotal voting groups, notably Latinos.  And our accuracy also reflected our intense focus on the methodological changes necessary to accurately sample the full American electorate – such as insisting on a higher proportion of cell phone interviews, despite the higher costs.

This matters for many reasons.  It is great to be right.  It is even greater to be the rightest.  But most of the time, we do not produce polls to predict imminent election outcomes. Most of the time, as now with the fiscal cliff, we poll the American people on major policy issues, on their own pocketbook experiences, and on the messages that speak to the positions and issues most critical to their lives.  That we got it right not only undergirds our ability to speak authoritatively on these policy issues in the halls of power, but also allows us to fulfill our mandate to tell powerful people what real people think.  After all, we cannot accurately represent American voters if we are not producing representative polls.

At this moment, when a very few leaders in Washington are making decisions that will effect our economy now and in the years to come, more than anyone else, Democracy Corps has the authority to tell leaders what voters sent them to Washington to do.  It was not, as it turns out, to keep taxes low for the wealthiest while bargaining away middle class tax deductions. Nor was it to slash the Medicare and Social Security benefits on which this and future generations so deeply depend.  Nor was it to defund local governments, preventing them from making investments in education and infrastructure.

Instead, this election was about the middle class—how to sustain, secure, and grow the middle class in this generation and the next.  The people spoke clearly on this topic… and we were happy to represent them.

Democracy Corps projected the final vote more accurately than any other pollster:

Advertising

Start your day with National Memo Newsletter

Know first.

The opinions that matter. Delivered to your inbox every morning

Donald Trump
Youtube Screenshot

Allies of former President Donald Trump have advised members of the Republican Party to cool down their inflammatory rhetoric toward the United States Department of Justice and the Federal Bureau of Investigation following the execution of a search warrant at Trump's Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida on Monday.

Trump supporters, right-wing pundits, and lawmakers have been whipped into a frenzy over what Trump called a "raid" by federal agents in pursuit of classified documents removed from the White House during Trump's departure from office.

Keep reading... Show less

Former President Donald Trump

Youtube Screenshot

On August 20, 2022, Donald Trump will have been gone from the White House for 19 months. But Trump, unlike other former presidents, hasn’t disappeared from the headlines by any means — and on Monday, August 8, the most prominent topic on cable news was the FBI executing a search warrant at Trump’s Mar-a-Lago home in South Florida. Countless Republicans, from Fox News hosts to Trump himself, have been furiously railing against the FBI and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ). And in an article published by Politico on August 11, reporters Kyle Cheney and Meridith McGraw describe the atmosphere of “paranoia” and suspicion that has become even worse in Trumpworld since the search.

“A wave of concern and even paranoia is gripping parts of Trumpworld as federal investigators tighten their grip on the former president and his inner circle,” Cheney and McGraw explain. “In the wake of news that the FBI agents executed a court-authorized search warrant at Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida, Trump’s allies and aides have begun buzzing about a host of potential explanations and worries. Among those being bandied about is that the search was a pretext to fish for other incriminating evidence, that the FBI doctored evidence to support its search warrant — and then planted some incriminating materials and recording devices at Mar-a-Lago for good measure — and even that the timing of the search was meant to be a historical echo of the day President Richard Nixon resigned in 1974.”

Keep reading... Show less
{{ post.roar_specific_data.api_data.analytics }}