Washington Post Skews Poll for ‘The One’

The Washington Post was very excited to report on Feb. 5 that President Obama has finally achieved “the edge” over Mitt Romney in a “general election matchup” poll. The Post was pleased to note Obama was “boosted by improved public confidence” and that he now led Romney by over 50%. Well, he does if you don’t poll actual voters, anyway and therein lies the major problem with the Post’s polling.

The flaw in the Post’s poll is that they seem to have polled “adults” instead of “likely voters” and this fact calls into question the claim in the headline that “Obama holds edge over Romney in general election matchup.” You see, you have to be an actual voter before your opinion in an “election matchup” much matters but the Post apparently did not make sure that its respondents were actual voters before declaring that Obama is now winning over more voters.

But the bigger problem is the fact that the Post has decided it no longer needs to include the partisan breakdown of its respondents for readers to assess. The Post did not include the percentages of Democrats, Republicans, and Independents in its polling data so there is no way to know if the poll included a fair representation of all parties or if the whole poll was weighted heavy with Democrats.

The Post has had troubling polls before. Ed Morrissey notes for instance that a WaPo poll from April of 2011 had 22% Republicans overpowered by 33% Democrats and 38% purported independents. If the Post is shorting Republican representation, no wonder the Obamessiah seems to be surging!

By excluding in reports its partisan breakdown, the Post risks having its results easily dismissed by serious readers. It makes the poll practically worthless. Of course, the problem is that the average reader won’t realize that things are askew with the polling and will accept the claims of Obama’s popularity at face value. But maybe that’s why the Post won’t include its partisan breakdown in its reports? As Morrissey says, “it’s easy to assume that the reason that the Post has ended its sample transparency is because they have something to hide.”

And with quotes from the Post story like, “Overall, 55 percent of those who are closely following the campaign say they disapprove of what the GOP candidates have been saying,” one has to wonder if those respondents scoffing at the Republican message were actual voters that the GOP should pay attention to, or partisan Democrats whom they won’t be able to reach anyway, or even disinterested “adults” that aren’t voting in the first place? Unfortunately, with this poll we have no way to assess the answers to those questions.

Still, the Post assures us that, “Meanwhile, the president’s recent remarks are better reviewed.” How do we know? Well, we don’t. We just have to take the Post’s word for it if we are going to believe it.

Essentially, what we have with these Washington Post polls is simple cheerleading for the president instead of legitimate analysis of the current sentiments of voters.

Nancy DisGrace
Energy Consumption as Economic Indicator
  • Unless I am reading it wrong


    At the bottom

    Dems  34
    Republicans 23
    Independents 37
    Other 5
    No opinion 1

    So it seems (if I am reading this right) that Obama only reaches 50% when dems have a 3 to 2 advantage over republicans polled.

    Typical Lame stream media poll.

    •  That’s it, all right.

      Partisan breakdown is terribly skewed.  It explains the whole poll, from the bloated approval ratings to his stronger match-ups.

      WaPo has descended into pure hackery since Obama took office.  They were always a pretty liberal rag, but now they scarcely even put up a pretense.

  • GarandFan

    I would think that any “poll” out of the MSM is strongly suspect as to it’s composition.

    Or as Tingles is apt to say “We have a vested interest in the success of this administration!”

  • herddog505

    Given what we’ve recently learned about White House collusion with MMFA, which then feeds “stories” to the rest of MiniTru, I have to wonder if these polls were dreamed up in the West Wing.

  • Hugh_G

    Gee, then there are those pesky Rasmussen numbers and that damn NY Times poll which both support the trend upwards.

    As the say, denial ain’t just a river in Africa. Reality is setting in and it hurts doesn’t it?

    • Sky__Captain

      And the reality is that the SCOAMF in the White House is the weakest candidate in 2012.

      Hurts, doesn’t it?

      • Hugh_G

        That must be why he leads any of yours.

        Like I said….denial isn’t just a river in Africa.

        And what the hell does SCOAMF mean? I can only imagine the juvenile meaning.

        • Gmacr1

          Keep whistling past the graveyard and thinking that…

        • Commander_Chico

          Supreme Commander of all mother f…..

          • jim_m

            Yep, the very SCOAMF you will still be voting for despite all your whining.

        • Sky__Captain

          Of course D’Ohbama leads in skewed polls, that’s the point of this thread. Duh.

          If Barack Hussein Obama is soooo great, why doesn’t he run on his economic record?

          Or his foreign policy record?

          Or his scandals such as “Fast and Furious”?

          Or his voilations of the 1st Admendment of the Constitution?

          Or his constant flubs that make Dan Quayle look articulate?

          Heck, 0bama’s last campaign commercial concentrated on his 2008 campaign, not his actual record.

          Yet, the likes of you and Comrade_Chico will happily vote again for our first Un-American (P)resident even though he is a SCOAMF.

          (For the uninormed, that means Stuttering Custerf**k Of A Miserable Failure.)
          (Or, Making Jimmy Carter Look Like A Genius.)


          • Hugh_G

            You didn’t disappoint me with your juvenile acronym.

            What will he run on:

            1. His record – proudly. Both domestic and foreign.

            2. Against the crackheads who call themselves congressional Republicans. I think the tax man has a higher standing than congressional Republicans.

            3. If all else is lost – which it isn’t – any of the collection of Republican clowns currently running. Let’s see Romney would probably say he’s really a democrat if it would get him elected; Santorum should have or maybe even was a Cardinal from the 16th century (which is charitable as some think he actually came from the Stone Ages); or Newt…oh what the hell can I say about Newt, even you guys can’t stand him.

          • Sky__Captain

            You want to “juvenile” – go look at Stephen.

            My responses to your points:

            1. BWHAHAHAHHA

            2. The Congressional Republicans in control of things are RINOS, but better than the Marxist-in-Chief.

            3. Every one has a better record than the SCOAMF- even Ron Paul (and he’s a bit of a nut).

          • Hugh_G

            Your juvenile acronym speaks volumes. I don’t need to compare you to another.

          • Sky__Captain

            Don’t think I did not notice you did not actually adress my post.

          • Sky__Captain

            Oh, and if Barry’s going to run on his record – when is he going to start?

            What will YOU do when he does not?

          • Hugh_G

            Well you might take the time to do a little reading in between listening to Limbaugh et al.

            If you did you could even go to the President’s election website where it’s stated clearly, even for you, that he is running on his record.

            O you might find the statement from his Press Secretary (hint:it was in January) that President Obama is running on his record.

            So what I will do is vote for him.

          • jim_m

            He;’s running on his record?  Like all those budgets he’s gotten passed?  It would be nice if he could offer a budget that his dem controlled Senate would vote for but it’s been 1020 days and he’s failed on that score.

            So by all means let the fool run on his record.  But everyone except you is saying that he will run a negative campaign agianst the GOP and plead that he needs more time.  If he had a record of accomplishment he wouldn’t need more time.

          • Hugh_G

            You know I really do believe you hear voices.

            If he believes he has a record of accomplishment he shouldn’t run again? Are you nuts or are you nuts?

            The only one who counts is President Obama. He says he’s running on his record. Is the “everyone you’re referring to those voices you hear?

            You won’t catch anything if you go look at his website where it’s clear that he’s proud of his record. You may not be, which is your right. I am, which is my right. But don’t just make shit up or say whatever it is from the voices you hear.

          • Sky__Captain

            So enlighten us.

            For the last time – detail Obama’s record of accomplishments.


            Or shut up.

          • Hugh_G

            I don’t choose to shut up. I suggested a place to find them. Take yourself there.

  • Hank_M

    We’ll see more and more of this this year.
    All part of the plan to keep Obama in the WH.
    We’ll see more bogus polls telling us that Obama’s popularity is rising.
    We’ll see more “economic” reports telling us how everything is improving.

    And in the echo chamber that is DC and the MSM, it may indeed appear to be that way.
    But in fly over country it isn’t going to sell.

    Nope. We’ll have to wait for a Repub to win the WH before we start seeing stories on the homeless, downtrodden and needy. We’ll need a Repub in the WH before we start getting honest “reporting” on the deficit, cronyism, Justice Dept scandals and an out of control foreign policy.

    • Hugh_G

      A poll that is favorable is bogus. A poll that isn’t favorable isn’t bogus.

      You are so predictable.

      • jim_m

        No a poll that is not done well is a poll that isn’t done well.  I look at whether the breakdown of dems vs republicans reflects what surveys of affiliation say. I look at whether it is adults vs registered voters vs likely voters.  I look at whether it was conducted over a weekend or if it was done through the week.  I look at the sample size and I look at the questions asked and the answers.

        Criticism of polls is based on that first. 

  • Commander_Chico

    Arguing about polls is like arguing about astrology.

  • Hank_M

    Due to the weird formatting with loys of replies, here is the record Hugh is referring to, from Obama’s web site.

    Putting Americans back to work
    Reforming Wall St and protecting consumers
    Making college more affordable
    Ending the Iraq war
    Repealing DADT
    and delivering affordable health care

    I cannot imagine why he’s leaving out the lilly Ledbetter act. Hell, that’s a game changer.

  • Hugh_G

    Oh my gosh another of those nasty favorable polls today. CNN.

    Yeah, yeah it’s a fix.

  • W

    As often and as big as many of the pollsters have been off so far in the primaries, I am putting less credibility in them than usual.