The most accurate pollsters
by Jerome Armstrong, Fri Nov 21, 2008 at 11:04:53 AM EST
Wow, according to Markos, by my giving Research 2000 the "Zogby Award" for their 2008 polling, I've committed a "serious accusation" in that I "claim that Research 2000 cooked its numbers" in their polling. Yikes, no fun with that guy until he gets his needed vacation...
One of his commenters gives a good definition of why Research2000 gets the award:
Then from Oct. 30 through the election, R2K basically didn't change, ending up at 51-46, still a 5 point lead, while the RCP average showed Obama's lead opening up again, to 52.1-44.5.
From Oct. 25 to Nov. 4, the RCP average went from Obama +8.0 to Obama +7.6. Over the same period, R2K went from Obama +12 to Obama +5. I can't point to how this was done, but I got the distinct impression that R2K was tired of being a pro-Obama outlier as the election approached and decided to tighten up its numbers.
I hate to say that, because I think it was so great that Markos paid for this tracking poll and made it so transparent for all of us. But if you look at the R2K trendlines, you get the impression that the race was an Obama blowout for 6 weeks and then tightened at the end. No other poll shows that and I don't think I believe it.
Sounds Zogby-like to me (without needing the hyperventilating accusations in response). Markos, why dig? Every criticism I made about the polls sample turned out accurate-- end of debate. In the public poll of polls tracking I did, I wound up not even weighting Research 2000's numbers, once they slid to the middle. They helped formulate my opinion of taking the average and giving an even allocation of the undecideds for predicting a 6.4 margin for Obama.
It is useful to turn to looking at whom among the national pollsters got it right. Mark Blumenthal has the list, but doesn't give the bragging rights, so I will rank them, according to getting closest to the 6.6 margin and the candidate amounts breaking ties:
1. CNN/Opinion Research 1. Ipsos/McClatchy 3. Democracy Corps 4. Fox News/Opinion Dynamics 5. Pew Research 6. ARG 7. Harris Interactive 7. IBD/TIPP 8. NBC/WSJ 9. Rasmussen 10. You/Gov Polimetrix 11. Battleground (Lake) 12. Research 2000 13. Diego/Hotline 14. ABC/Washington Post 15. Marist College 16. CBS/NYTimes 17. Reuters/C-SPAN/Zogby 17. Gallup 19 Battleground (Terrance)Opinion Research and Ipsos/McClatchy each only missed the final number by .4, so they get the top award. Democracy Corps got the margin pretty close, but was off by more with each candidate. The dog, loser, is Battleground's Terrance. What a humiliation. This is the polling group that nailed it in '04, and was the top in '96 as well. The runner-up dog is Gallup. Their "expanded voter" model was a failure, and Zogby, lol.