My personal musings about anything that gets on my radar screen--heavily dominated by politics.


Poll Madness

If you, like me, have been trying to follow the polls to see what's going on, you're probably about as confused as I am.

I think it's important to separate the national polls from the tracking polls. Watching the tracking polls will make you nutty--TIPP showed an 8 point swing away from the President over four days this week, which has since reversed a little; Zogby (who has already admitted to "tweaking" numbers that he didn't believe in South Dakota) has been steady on the national numbers, but the state numbers are so whacky that you wonder if anything he does is valuable; ABC/WaPo tracking has been zig-zagging; and Rasmussen has also been a bit unstable.

The national polls, on the other hand, have been remarkably consistent: Gallup Bush +5; Battleground Bush +5; FoxNews Bush +5; Newsweek Bush +6. Even looking inside the Battleground poll at the tracking numbers shows a bit of constancy notably absent from the other tracking polls.

So who to believe? I know Hindrocket thinks the Newsweek poll is bad, and it may be; but when four separate organizations come op with the same numbers using the same basic methodology, and four organization come up with wildly different numbers using their methodology, as a scientist I'm inclined to lean a little heavier on the first set.

Besides, I'd really like to think that this is a Bush +5 race--I can't conceive of it being anything else in this 9/11 world.

A local note: The Rocky Mountain News has the President up by 9 in Colorado again. If those numbers hold up, that should be enough to "coattail" in a Senator, a couple Representatives, and a State Legislature.

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