Gay Patriot Header Image

Desperately Spinning Surveys

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 6:09 pm - May 15, 2012.
Filed under: 2012 Presidential Election

It’s not the first time“, writes James Taranto today in his Best of the Web column, “the New York Times has been accused of bias, but it may be the funniest”:

Charlie Spiering of the Washington Examiner reports that the charge was leveled this morning by the Obama campaign. MSNBC host Chuck Todd asked deputy campaign manager Stephanie Cutter to comment on the latest Times/CBS News poll, and she said: “The methodology was significantly biased.” She then “said that she didn’t want to bore the viewers with talk of methodology, but repeated that she believed the poll was flawed.” Pressed by Todd, she said: “It’s a biased sample, so they re-biased the same sample.” Glad she cleared that up.

Yeah, I caught the Spiering piece too and Ms. Cutter’s reaction struck me as odd and counterproductive.  It reinforces the image that the Obama campaign is in panic mode — and reminds me of the time the McCain campaign in ’08 organized a bloggers’ conference call to comment a ABC/Washington Post poll showing their guy in trouble.

Instead of trying to attack one survey, Ms. Cutter would have served herself — and her boss’s campaign better — had she said, that this is just one survey and reminded her interlocutor of another data point favoring Mr. Obama  — without whining about that one poll, save to call it an outlier.

UPDATE: Commenting on Ms. Cutter’s complaints, Allahpundit offers:

Note to Team O: If you don’t like the fact that people perceive O’s gay-marriage “evolution” as opportunistic, why not try to find the silver lining in that result instead of whining about it?Debbie Wasserman-Schultz did!



  1. As a pre-emptive strike, I’ll point out that the TransAtlantic T**t had this to say on an earlier thread in response to My Sharia Moor’s statement that many polls conducted by our leftist media oversample Democrats:

    “Just like in 2008, right? ‘Poll bias’ is the last-resort argument of someone who doesn’t like what they’re seeing.”

    LOL. Please, someone from the left defend the remarks of Ms. Cutter.

    Comment by Jman1961 — May 15, 2012 @ 6:37 pm - May 15, 2012

  2. Well, I won’t pay much attention to polls until after the conventions. Right now, they are not worth a lot of worry. Better to worry about the rotten crap the DNC is going to haul out.

    And with that, I am out for the summer. Leaving next week and I promised my husband I would limit computer use this year. See you guys in October. Be sweet! 🙂

    Comment by David in New Orleans — May 16, 2012 @ 12:37 am - May 16, 2012

  3. ciao david

    Comment by rusty — May 16, 2012 @ 12:42 am - May 16, 2012

  4. Antio sas, Rusty!

    Comment by David in New Orleans — May 16, 2012 @ 1:28 am - May 16, 2012

  5. @Jman1961: As I said, I’m following averages, not individual polls. If the CBS/NYT poll is indicative of a trend, future polls will mirror it and the averages will change. If not, it’s an outlier of some variety, the reason is immaterial.

    Comment by Serenity — May 16, 2012 @ 2:47 am - May 16, 2012

  6. Although, something you may well find interested, although the RCP Average included the CBS/NYT poll the last time I look, they’ve specifically excluded it from their average now. I’m expecting every conservative here to declare RealClearPolitics to be obviously biased and devoid of all credibility in 3… 2…

    Comment by Serenity — May 16, 2012 @ 2:54 am - May 16, 2012

  7. Wonder why they excluded it. Pressure perhaps from the Obama camp? Interested that they still kept the notoriously flawed Associated Press and Reuters surveys in their average.

    Comment by B. Daniel Blatt — May 16, 2012 @ 3:05 am - May 16, 2012

  8. *Facepalm*

    Comment by Serenity — May 16, 2012 @ 3:33 am - May 16, 2012

  9. President Obama’s campaign is in total chaos; they reflect his meltdown.

    Comment by Sebastian Shaw — May 16, 2012 @ 8:51 am - May 16, 2012

  10. Polls don’t matter much until you get to early October, especially after the first two debates.

    Comment by davinci — May 16, 2012 @ 9:13 am - May 16, 2012

  11. @davinci: I think you are pretty much right. Even in 2008 when Obama led for most of the election and won by a considerable margin, he didn’t start opening up a consistent lead and pulling away from McCain until September. Same goes for 2004 when the polling was very competitive right up to early September (and then still tightened again in October).

    I’m already hearing shouting in the media about this, and all it’s succeeding in doing is giving me a headache. I already saw this in the damn Republican primaries, one day the media practically declares Mitt Romney the nominee, 24 hours later they’re asking if Romney’s campaign is finished. Before that I saw in the 2008 elections as well, it being a seemingly never-ending cycle of Obama supporters declaring it all over and McCain supporters giving up hope, followed by yet another McCain surge, Obama supporters getting all panicky and McCain supporters crowing about how they were sure to win now.

    I need another coffee.

    Comment by Serenity — May 16, 2012 @ 10:10 am - May 16, 2012

  12. Quick aftermath update: Latest poll from Fox News shows Obama leading Romney by 7 points. What does this mean? Not a whole lot.

    Comment by Serenity — May 17, 2012 @ 10:02 am - May 17, 2012

  13. Serenity, as I recall, the last FoxNews poll from 2004 had Kerry up on W. FoxNews may lean right, but its poll sure don’t.

    Also note that in the poll, Obama only musters 46.

    Comment by B. Daniel Blatt — May 17, 2012 @ 11:03 am - May 17, 2012

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.