Media Learned Nothing after their 2016 Polling Disaster
Harken back four years ago and recall how the media confidently predicted a Hillary Clinton landslide electoral victory over Donald Trump. They held firm to this prediction even when the election was all but over.
At 10:20 PM ET on November 8, 2016, election night, the New York Times confidently proclaimed, in the manner of Baghdad Bob, that Hillary Clinton had an 85 percent chance of winning the election. Long faces and tears graced cable news election night coverage shows by then and Hillary probably was on her second bottle of chardonnay, drowning her sorrows over a coronation that was not meant to be. Yet the “paper of record” continued to push the big lie.
Last week Politico reassured its Beltway audience that, “Biden extends lead over Trump amid protests.” Citing a Fox News Poll of 1343 registered voters, they giddily reported Biden with a 12-point lead.
They did not survey likely voters as more accurate pollsters such as Rasmussen Reports does, but those simply appearing on voter rolls, even if many of them don’t turn out to vote on election day.
Of those surveyed the self-described political affiliation was 47 percent Democrat and 41 percent Republican, a six-point swing favoring the DNC media’s preferred candidate. When respondents were asked who they would vote for, 50 percent said Biden while 38 percent said Trump. Take away the Democrat oversampling and it’s only a 6-point margin.
Panic time for Republicans. This must be it for Trump and his supporters. How can Trump overcome a double-digit deficit to the Democrat candidate? Just look at Trump’s Tulsa rally with empty seats despite over a million ticket requests.
First the virus, then protests and riots, now anarchy in Democrat run cities as the new normal for America, all destroying the Trump presidency. The latest chapter in the NeverTrump manifesto, starting with Russian collusion and Mueller, to Stormy and Avenatti, Omarosa and Scaramucci, Bolton and Mattis, each one supposedly the end of Trump.
Not widely discussed were the 7.7 million Tulsa rally viewers on Fox News, setting a Saturday ratings record, not to mention those watching on other internet video platforms. After the media spent the previous week predicting illness or death for anyone foolish enough to brave the Trump rally, and attendees were threatened by Black Lives Matter protesters, many chose to stay home avoiding getting beaten up or worse.
Joe Biden gave a speech in a gymnasium, drawing perhaps a few dozen. Compare the two photos. Does this foreshadow a Biden landslide?
Can President Trump overcome a 12-point deficit to Joe Biden? Aside from Biden’s failing cognition and mental acuity, as in “120 million Americans dead from the Chinese flu,” history may also provide an answer to that question.
Four years ago, June 15, 2016, CNN reported, “Hillary Clinton has a 12-point lead over Donald Trump nationally, a new Bloomberg Politics poll shows.” We know how that poll aged over the subsequent months. Is history repeating itself with another 12-point lead over Trump?
In unison was an ABC News/Washington Post poll two weeks later, also showing Clinton with a 12-point lead over Trump. This poll oversampled Democrats over Republicans by 36 to 24. What a coincidence, a 12-point difference in sampling and electoral preference. They got the poll result they wanted by fudging the sample.
Media delusion continued in mid-October 2016 when Newsweek confidently predicted, “Hillary Clinton on track for Electoral College landslide”, based on a Reuters/Ipsos poll. This poll was taken days after the Access Hollywood October surprise tape release which like everything else was designed to obliterate Trump’s campaign or presidency.
Is this déjà vu, the media believing the same polls as they did four years ago? Have they learned nothing? Especially knowing how Trump has foiled all other deep state and media attacks against him.
Rasmussen Reports publishes a daily presidential tracking poll of likely, not simply registered, voters. Trump and Obama are within a point or two of each other in total approval at the same points in their presidencies.
Remember that Obama was cruising to reelection with a gale force tailwind from the media and no resistance from tongue-tied Republicans while Trump faces a hurricane force media headwind and interestingly the same unhelpful Republican party, yet he is as popular at “The One” was at the same point in their respective terms.
Polling “wunderkind” Nate Silver agrees, saying that, “President Trump can absolutely win the 2020 presidential election despite his significant dip in the polls against former Vice President Joe Biden.”
It seems the media doesn’t understand polls, despite commissioning and paying big bucks for them. Polling registered rather than likely voters and oversampling Democrats skews the results. Are these polls designed to reflect public opinion or shape it? What is the purpose of these polls?
One aim might be the narrative that if Trump wins reelection, he stole it as he supposedly did in 2016. How else to explain him winning despite double digit polling predicting he would lose in a landslide? This reinforces the narrative that Trump is, as former President Jimmy Carter claimed, an illegitimate president.
This sets the stage for Mueller part two, the only unknown being who Trump will be accused of colluding with to steal the election. Schiff and Nadler already have generic articles of impeachment ready, assuming Democrats still control the House, a few fill-in-the blank lines of who Trump colluded with or what he obstructed.
Another goal of fake polls is to depress Trump supporters, convincing them that all is lost, and they needn’t vote as it won’t matter given the insurmountable Biden lead.
A national poll is also irrelevant as the Electoral College, 50 separate state elections, decides who wins the White House. Biden could win every vote in New York and California, winning the national popular vote by a huge margin, and receive the same number of electoral votes as if he won each of those states by only one vote. National polls predict the popular vote, not the Electoral College.
Philosopher George Santayana observed, “Those who cannot learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” It seems the media have short memories and are falling into the same trap as they did four years ago, preparing for a messy faceplant the day after Trump is reelected.
Brian C Joondeph, MD, is a Denver based physician and freelance writer whose pieces have appeared in American Thinker, Daily Caller, Rasmussen Reports, and other publications. Follow him on Facebook LinkedIn, Twitter and QuodVerum.