I’ve spent enough time on racetracks in my other journalistic life that I’ve come to have a healthy disregard for poll knowledge in this life. Polls are not only a gateway drug for lazy political journalism, they distort the political process. This includes the public perception that polls play an important role in autonomy. Additionally, the polling industry seems to be lagging behind the technology used to gamify the entire business. over the weekend, new york times We’ve demystified this phenomenon to figure out why so many people got the 2022 midterm elections so wrong.
A similar series of events played out on battlefields across the country. Surveys showing Republican approval ratings, often by pollsters of the same party, honked Democrat horns in Pennsylvania, New Hampshire and Colorado. The skewed polls, combined with political factors already in favor of Republicans, such as inflation and the unpopularity of President Biden, fueled what quickly became the inevitable political narrative. Democrats in each of these states won the Senate elections. Murray beat Smiley by nearly 15 points. It wasn’t the first time a distorted understanding of the contours of a national election came to dominate the views of political operatives, donors, journalists and, in some cases, the candidates themselves.
The 2022 misleading polls didn’t just unnecessarily startle some worried candidates into spending more money than they needed for their races. , led several candidates from both parties who were likely to win to lose money they could have had a chance of winning. all.
Gone are the days when the industry found polling to be both an indifferent analytical tool and a sophisticated rat-ficking vehicle.of new york times It makes it clear that it’s time to abandon the poll average as a measure of everything, let alone an indicator of what will happen in the election three months from now. In the third consecutive election cycle, polls opposed William Goldman’s assessment of Hollywood, who always had deep relevance to American politics. no one knows anything
Worse, of course, are those who deceive themselves and others into thinking that they know something, that they possess magical alchemical formulas that are beyond the reach of ordinary people. Some of them became famous, some became rich, and I wouldn’t follow most of them to his $2 window on his $1,500 bill. And while the reliance on poll averages inevitably leads to political coverage of horse racing that everyone laments, no one seems willing to stop. new york times Peace, pointing out.
Red Wave’s misleading investigations have proven particularly beneficial to the right-wing media. Demand for proof of Republican victory and Democrat defeat was high among audiences, especially on Fox News. The network’s own voting unit, respected throughout the news industry for its nonpartisanship and transparency, had not detected a Republican wave. It began introducing polls from Kahali and Insider Advantage’s Matt Towerley. It was an indication of race.
One thing that could serve as an effective counterweight to the heavily gamified poll industry is aggressive local reporting. Leaving national election coverage to grand generalities underpinned by dubious public opinion bone worship is to ensure that hundreds of local issues that lead to real national trends are missed.capsize Law vs. Wade —permeated into local politics.
Numbers always lie. Anyone on the Belmont backstretch will tell you so.
Charles P Pierce is the author of four books, most recently stupid americaand has been working as a journalist since 1976. He lives near Boston and has three children.
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