About that Fox News poll claiming 51% of voters want Trump out

We all know there's such a thing as a push poll.  We also know that a heckuva lot of pollsters get their results wrong.

Nevertheless, here's an unwelcome Fox News poll result being reported as news and being flashed, at least at first, in red letters at the center of the page on the Drudge Report:

Just over half of voters want President Trump impeached and removed from office, according to a Fox News Poll released Wednesday.

A new high of 51 percent wants Trump impeached and removed from office, another 4 percent want him impeached but not removed, and 40 percent oppose impeachment altogether. In July, 42 percent favored impeachment and removal, while 5 percent said impeach but don't remove him, and 45 percent opposed impeachment. 

Details about the poll, which should have been placed near the top of the piece, instead could be found onnly way down at the bottom:

Conducted October 6–8, 2019 under the joint direction of Beacon Research (D) and Shaw & Company (R), this Fox News Poll includes interviews with 1,003 randomly chosen registered voters nationwide who spoke with live interviewers on both landlines and cellphones. The poll has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus three percentage points for all registered voters.

It's undoubtedly a lot of randomly selected registered voters, even if it's not 51%, and that's likely a reflection of the wall-to-wall negative media coverage President Trump has gotten over this impeachment whistleblower issue, which I've seen on television news broadcasts.  Those are the ones that claim Biden did "nothing wrong" in his family lining their pockets with Ukrainian oligarch cash to head off corruption inquiries (latest news: Biden himself reportedly took a $900,000 payoff from the Ukrainian gas company) with little regard for the facts about this sorry spectacle — the backstage manipulations and conflicts of interest of the "whistleblower" activist/leaker and all of his Democratic allies enabling him.

What it doesn't explain is why Biden has since skidded in the polls behind Elizabeth Warren.  It also doesn't explain why NeverTrump pols, such as Ohio Gov. John Kasich, are now warning Democrats that in Ohio, "there's nobody talking about this."

So was the selection really random?  And are registered voters the best people to be asking as elections hearken?  Some pollsters have told me yes at this early stage, but it still seems a bit unrepresentative, given that the only people whose opinions count are those who vote, although that can include newly registered voters, who are voters pollsters pay attention to.

All the same, what's Fox News's track record on polls? 

Not good, actually.  Here is its 2016 pre-election poll, which forecast Hillary Clinton soundly beating Donald Trump by four percentage points, which, in election world, is a landslide.

If you want to follow pollsters, the best one to follow is IBD/TIPP, which has a long record of calling election results right, even against the herd.  They too are reporting troubles for Trump, but not as strongly as this Fox poll.  There are others who swear by Rasmussen, so a look at what they've got is worth a click, too

The bad thing with this is that it will embolden Democrats to keep pressing forward to remove President Trump from office, even on just obstruction grounds since they aren't doing any "impeachment inquiry" honestly or fairly to all sides.  They've gagged Republicans from asking questions, and their refusal to hold a real impeachment inquiry is nothing more than a bid to keep subpoena powers from Republicans.

Is any of that known to voters?  Not most Fox poll voters.  Worse still, the Drudge Report, for inexplicable reasons, is featuring almost exclusively negative Trump news these days, along with the NeverTrumps at Fox News.

It's tough to fight a barrage like this, with so much stacked against.  That said, it signals that the fightback from Republicans and Trump himself needs to be stronger — they've got their work cut out for them.

For the rest of us, it does well to take this Fox poll with a grain of salt, given its poll record and general trend of negative reporting on Trump.

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