A Theory on Clinton-Obama and McCain-Romney
by Senate Guru, Tue Jan 08, 2008 at 06:42:23 PM EST
So the polls had Obama taking a significant bump from Iowa to a large New Hampshire victory over Clinton, and there was only supposed to be a hair of difference between McCain and Romney.
Were the polls crazy?
No. I don't think so. How? Here's a pretty simple theory.
New Hampshire's independent voters ostensibly preferred Obama among the Democrats and McCain among the Republicans. These independents were waiting until the day of the primary election to decide which candidate to turn out for.
Given that the polls looked so much stronger for Obama's victory, many of these independents (who were polling in support of Obama) decided that, with Obama's New Hampshire victory looking so secure, they might as well use their vote to make sure McCain bested Romney. Only, so many of these independent voters thought the same thing that it shifted Obama's comfortable margin of victory to McCain.
So what should the pollsters and the media do? Instead of analyzing how Clinton beat Obama, they should check in with McCain-voting independents who decided in the last couple days to vote in the Republican primary for McCain, and I'll bet you that a good chunk of them saw Obama comfortably winning so they gave their vote to McCain - and that the polls were accurate in terms of gauging their support - they just weren't accurate in gauging whether they'd vote in the Democratic or Republican primaries.
That's my theory anyway.