Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Media Drunk on Exit Polls: WI Big Win for Obama?

Here is how ABC News' (the same news organization whose president's wife works for Obama) headline about last night's Wisconsin recall vote reads:

Walker Wins, But Obama Bests Romney in Wisconsin

So, Wisconsin's recall vote is a win for Obama?  The mainstream media is touting exit poll data that shows WI voters favor Obama over Romney by 7%.  Most Republican talking heads are responding by pointing out that Obama won WI by 14% in 2008 and the new 7% figure shows a big decline in support for Obama.  Unfortunately, they are both wrong.

The simple truth is when you take garbage data in, your analysis gives garbage data out and unfortunately for the mainstream media, last nights exit polls were complete garbage.

How do I know this?  Because last night, as soon as the polls closed, the mainstream media was besides them selves with glee over the same exit poll data that showed the governor's race was a dead heat:
As Wisconsin voting places were closing, exit polls showed the recall race in a dead heat between Gov. Scott Walker and challenger Tom Barrett.
But the race wasn't a dead heat was it?  Walker actually beat Tom Barrett by a wider margin than he did the first time the two political opponents butted heads.  The final tally has Walker beating Barrett 53% to 46%, a difference of 7%.

Haven't we heard that 7% number before?  Oh yeah, that's the same delta the mainstream media is applauding as by how much Wisconsin voters support Obama over Romney according to last night's exit polls.

Here's what we know.  Exit polls showed a 50/50 tie between Walker and Barrett, the final results showed those polls were off by 7% in favor of the Democrat, showing they were over represented in the sample.  Those same exit polls show Obama leading Romney by 7%.  Since these numbers are from the exact same polls it's safe to say the oversampling of Democrats by 7% holds true.  

What does that all mean?  It means the Obama and Romney are actually in a dead heat and the state is, for the first time in nearly 25 years, in play for Republicans.

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