Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Allen & Kaine both at 46% even with Dem-heavy sampling

I don't know if this story is more about the Allen-Kaine U.S. senatorial race, or if it's more about the Washington Post's skewed polling numbers in order to come up with their desired results in what is one of the most-watched races in the country in what has become a battleground state. Indeed, last week Politico called Virginia the "center of the political universe" for the 2012 elections.

Despite the WaPo's terrible methodology, they still had Republican George Allen tied with his Democratic opponent at 46%-46%  and, in fact, discovered George Allen's favorability numbers among Virginians at +15%.

Jim Riley at Virginia Virtucon has a great post about the numbers and wryly notes:
Let’s be honest. Anyone who thinks that only 27% of registered voters in Virginia consider themselves to be Republicans is either a.) stupid; b.) high; c.) incredibly biased or d.) all of the above. Well that is exactly the number the Washington Post used in their latest poll. To put that in context, the last time Republicans were less than 30% of the general election turnout in Virginia was when LBJ was elected in 1964. Let’s look at the last 3 statewide elections held in Virginia: 2006 – 39% Republican, 36% Democrats, and 26% Independents 2008 – 33% Republicans, 39% Democrats, and 27% Independents 2009 – 37% Republicans, 33% Democrats, and 30% Independents That gives us an average of: 36.3% Republicans, 36.0% Democrats, and 27.6% Independents
If the political bloggers can correctly crunch the numbers, why can't the Washington Post? Could it be that they -- gasp! -- want to skew the numbers? If we are to believe the Post, only 25 percent of the electorate is Republican (less than in heavily-Democratic California, mind you) while polling +7 Democrats.

Which then begs the question: Are George Allen's real polling numbers pulling away from Tim Kaine's? Instead of being tied 45-45 percent, is it a bit more lopsided in favor of the Republican?

But here's the gold nugget in this "hostile" survey: the favorable/unfavorable numbers:
Favorability Ratings
Fav - 46%
Un - 31%
Net +15%
Fav - 41%
Un - 39%
Net +2%
If you're Tim Kaine ... ouch. This despite the WaPo polling Dems at +7 and Republicans at only 25%.

And what about that June 12 Republican Primary when George Allen will face three opponents?
Of more immediate importance, the new poll shows Allen is in a dominant position ahead of his June 12 Republican primary. Among likely primary voters, Allen gets 62 percent, while Del. Robert Marshall (Prince William) gets 12 percent, former Virginia Tea Party Patriots head Jamie Radtke gets 5 percent, and Chesapeake minister E.W. Jackson brings up the rear at 3 percent.
Using skewed numbers and questionable methodology, it looks as if the Washington Post is setting up shop against Republicans ... again. With their financial numbers in the red as they join other print media who are hemorrhaging readers as well as cash, is that the best use of their resources? Or could they perhaps help themselves by doing what a newspaper is supposed to do ... provide an unbiased source of news?

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