ABC – Gary Langer:
This was so off-the-charts wrong. All of these polls. I think there were a couple of exceptions, but all the big-time polls, as you know, had it Obama up by five to ten, some cases 12 points. Now, they got the Republican race fairly close, but they really blew the Democrat side. These pollsters, their reputations are crucial to them.
Polling is such a fundamental element of the Media these days, because polling is used to make news. Polling is used to shape public opinion.
Polling is not a reflection of news.
This is the thing that a lot of people don’t understand, but it is not meant to tell you, “Hey, this is what people are thinking.”
The purpose of polls — be it pre-election polls or Iraq war polls — those polls are being used by the Media as a substitute for news, and the purpose is to shape your thinking and your opinion, and if they continue to botch these things, nobody’s going to pay attention to them.
Wouldn’t it be just fun, wouldn’t it be fascinating if there were no polls, no pre-election polls whatsoever?
Stop and think for a moment. It will never happen, I know, but stop and think if every election, primary or general, had no polling in it, and you had no idea what your neighbors were thinking unless you asked them, but you couldn’t talk to everybody in the state.
If you lived in New Hampshire, you couldn’t talk to everybody to find out what was going to happen. All you could do is talk to your friends and some of your neighbors. You wouldn’t have the slightest idea. It would be totally up to you and what you think: not joining the crowd, not opposing the crowd. It would be totally up to you. I think it would be fascinating.
It will never happen, but these pollsters are going to have to get to the bottom of this. They are going to have to find out what went wrong and caused their polls to be so skewed. They’re going to have to go about this in a purely objective way, and then if they have guts, they’re going to have to tell us what they found.
ABC posted on its own blog – Gary Langer, and he’s “covered the beat of public opinion for more than 15 years.”
Here’s how he began:
“There will be a serious critical look at the final pre-election polls in the Democrat presidential primary in New Hampshire. That is essential. It is simply unprecedented for so many polls to have been so wrong. We need to know why. But we need to know it through careful, empirically based analysis. There will be a lot of claims about what happened, about respondents who reputedly lied, about alleged difficulties polling in biracial contests,” and that’s the only reference to that that he makes: “about alleged difficulties polling in biracial contests.”
Can I explain what this means to you, fokes?
It’s called the Wilder Effect. In other places, it’s called the Bradley Effect. In still other places, it’s called the Dinkins Effect. But here’s how it works…
You have on a ballot a black candidate and a white candidate. A pollster calls and asks you who you’re going to vote for. You, in the privacy of your phone call with the pollster, not wanting the pollster to think that you’re a racist, likely would say, “I’m voting for the black guy,” so as to get the pollster’s approval, whether the pollster actually grants it or not. (You know, the tenets of political correctness.)
But then, when you go into your polling place, and you go into the place behind the curtain where it’s just you, and there’s no pollster, you vote for the white guy, thereby skewing the results of the pre-election poll.
Now, I would also like to add to this hypothesis what I would call the Reverse Wilder Effect. Wilder, by the way, being Doug Wilder, the governor of Virginia who was black, and about whom it was first postulated; and Tom Bradley, the mayor of Los Angeles, running for governor out there; and Dinkins.
Now keep in mind, all these guys are Democrats and you’re dealing with Democrats being called by the pollsters.
So if you call up your Democrat and say, “Hi, I’m from the ABC Polling Unit. Who you gonna vote for?”
“I’m voting the black guy, I’m voting a good America. I’m not racist: I’m voting the black guy. I’m open-minded! It’s time for a change.”
“Oh, good! I’ll put it down.”
You go to the ballot box, and you vote the white guy, where nobody can see what you’re doing and nobody will know what you’re doing.
But Iowa, the Hawkeye Cauci… You go into somebody’s house; you go into some gymnasium, some school cafeteria, and you got all your friends knowing what you’re doing. You have all your friends watching what you’re doing, and so when it comes to time to vote in the Hawkeye Cauci on the Democrat side, in order that your friends don’t think you a racist, you vote Obama, because you can’t vote in private in the Hawkeye Cauci.
This would be the Reverse Wilder Effect.
So who knows if we’ve got an accurate result out of Iowa.
We’re talking Democrats who are immersed in political correctness and who live and die based on what people think of them, and the voting booth is the only place nobody will know what you’ve done, unless you tell them. So there’s no worry what people will think of you.
But in the Hawkeye Cauci, when everybody can hear what you say, or read what you vote or can hear you advocating or whatever? Well, you might have skewed Obama’s big victory in Iowa. Who knows? Then you get on to New Hampshire, and, of course, the Obama Effect here, or the Wilder Effect in full force in the sense that when it’s time to go vote, you do so in private.
You’ve told the pollsters, “I am caught up in the Obama wave coming out of Iowa,” and so forth. Then you get into the voting booth and say, “Screw it! I’m voting Hillary.” You couple that with who knows what other kinds of shenanigans went on with people first-time voting in New Hampshire. I don’t know if there’s a way of finding that out, but it’s probably not difficult to do if they would release those kinds of statistics.
The secretary of state said the ballots supposedly ran out. But the New Hampshire secretary of state said they’re expecting records numbers of first-time voters, which means (ha ha…) out-of-state people. It’s not illegal in New Hampshire.
Regardless what happened, pollsters are going to have to find out: for their own good, for their own understanding.
I’ve heard some pollsters saying, “Well, you know what, we’ve got a problem with our models. We haven’t found a way to calculate this massive turnout that’s surprising everybody,”