November 9, 2004
IF 59% OF VOTERS HAD BEEN WOMEN KERRY WOULD HAVE WON:
Election Day: Rigged Polls, Rigged Networks (Nicholas Stix, November 9, 2004, Men's News Daily)
So far, two possible and two baseless explanations, respectively, have been offered for the exit poll/real poll discrepancy: 1. The exit pollsters fudged their numbers, to make it look like Kerry was beating Bush, so as to discourage Bush supporters who had not yet voted from going to the polls, and bringing about a self-fulfilling prophecy (my theory); 2. According to the American Spectator’s “Prowler,” the phony exit poll numbers were not from the exit pollsters at all, but were counterfeits that had been packaged by the Kerry campaign to fool “everybody” (on the Left), and then spread via leftwing bloggers and Web sites; 3. Democrat talking point: “Mean” Republican voters skewed the exit poll results, by refusing to speak to pollsters; and 4. Kerry supporters (including an e-mail one of them sent to me, and which sounds like something out of democraticunderground.com’s conspiracy factory) insist that the exit poll numbers were the real deal, and were only countered through massive, Republican election fraud.
Actually, there were two different sets of bad exit poll numbers: phony and phonier. The phony numbers came from Joe Lenski’s “legitimate, professional” exit poll, while the phonier ones came from a Democrat hoax.
As Dennis Simon observed, the exit polls used to work just fine. And as John Zogby rued, the 2004 numbers were “terrible.”
As the Times’ Jim Rutenberg reported on November 5,
“The new system was engineered to avoid such problems. It was built by the National Election Pool, a consortium of the major television networks and The Associated Press, after an earlier set-up, the Voter News Service, helped lead the networks to call the state of Florida in the 2000 election first for Al Gore, then for George W. Bush, then for neither. The system broke down almost entirely on Election Day 2002.”
Let’s see. When Bill Clinton was winning national elections during the 1990s, there were no problems with the exit polls. But once Republicans started winning one election after another, the exit polls, old and new, either produced worthless numbers or crashed altogether, as the VNS did in 2002. I’m sure that’s all just a big coincidence.
For the “phonier” numbers explanation, consider the report by “Prowler” at The American Spectator.
“According to at least three sources, one inside the Kerry campaign, and two outside of it, but with ties to senior Kerry advisers, some of the ‘early polling numbers’ were in fact direct reports from Kerry campaign or Democratic Party operatives on the ground in such critical states as Pennsylvania, Ohio, North Carolina, Virginia, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, and Wisconsin. According to a Washington lobbyist with knowledge of the numbers, the numbers were packaged together so as to appear to be exit poll results. They were then scrubbed through several sources to land in the lap of sympathetic bloggers who these operatives believed would put the numbers up with little question.
The exit poll numbers actually looked pretty good for the President once you realized the gender discrepancy. Posted by Orrin Judd at November 9, 2004 11:58 AM