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A Look At The PPP Poll Numbers for McDonnell – Deeds Va Race

The McDonnell campaign has been very clear about the large lead in most polls. They don’t believe their lead is double digits. Public Policy Polling has some interesting and, I believe, highly partisan polls. The conclusions they reach in their explanations show their pro Democrat bias.

Take the just released poll concerning President Obama’s approval numbers for example. While Zogby, Rasmussen, Gallup, CNN, CBS and almost anyone taking polls have seen a significant drop in Obama’s approval ratings, PPP’s opinion is they were all wrong. His numbers were never that high to begin with. They claim his numbers are actually going up.

Now, after showing Obama’s approval ten points behind them all year, they’re at 50% and we’re actually at 52%, actually finding him slightly more popular…

Interestingly, their only national presidential poll listed on their website was an August 19, 2009 poll that shows this 52% approval mentioned in the above quote. If they were polling the same earlier this year, there appears to be no way to confirm this on their website. And as to the partisan nature of their polls, they used the term “birthers”, which is a left wing term intended to ridicule those that do not believe Obama was born in this country, in the same vein as the word Teabaggers, with it’s sexual connotation. It is hard to trust polls that have such an obvious bias.

Now the latest poll comes out on the Virginia Governor’s race. This poll shows McDonnell ahead 49%-42%, a drop for MaDonnell and an increase for Deeds over a poll taken in early August. That early August poll showed McDonnell with a lead at 51%-37%. PPP concluded:

Creigh Deeds has cut his deficit against Bob McDonnell in half, from 14 points a month ago to now 7.

Now, in looking at the internals in the poll, there are some glaring differences in the two sample groups. In the August 4 poll, they surveyed 35% Republicans and 32% Democrats. In the current poll, 38% were Democrats and 31% were Republicans. So, Republicans polled went from +3 to -7 – a swing of 10%. It seems that the only shift has been the in the sample. Deeds polls higher with women, and the latest poll surveyed more women (59%-41%) compared to the August 4 poll (55%-45%).

Several Left leaning blogs decried the first poll showing double digit deficits for Deeds. DailyKos said:

So…two badly-weighted polls in a week from Virginia. Don’t get too excited if McDonnell crashes back to a single-point lead once a well-weighted poll comes out, just as you shouldn’t panic at the sight of these results. If the polls return to a narrow GOP lead, it’s not a McDonnell meltdown or a Deeds surge, it’s the pollsters bothering to weight/check their samples once again. McDonnell doesn’t actually have a 14-point lead now; he can’t lose it if he never had it.

A number of other lefty blogs questioned the integrity of that August 3 PPP poll. (Not surprisingly, they don’t seem to have a problem with this one, even though it still has the same issues they took exception to last month, funny that.)

Now, having said all that, the McDonnell campaign has said all along the double digit poll leads were implausible. When Rasmussen and some of the others come out with their polls in the next few days, we will see what they say. I would predict that they will all trend to a much tighter race than previous polls have shown to date. But I think we all agree that PPP is not a very reliable poll.

About Tom White

Tom is a US Navy Veteran, owns an Insurance Agency and is currently an IT Manager for a Virginia Distributor. He has been published in American Thinker, currently writes for the Richmond Examiner as well as Virginia Right! Blog.Tom lives in Hanover County, Va and is involved in politics at every level and is a Recovering Republican who has finally had enough of the War on Conservatives in progress with the Leadership of the GOP on a National Level.

9 Responses to “A Look At The PPP Poll Numbers for McDonnell – Deeds Va Race”

  1. Bigvinu says:

    Tom,

    The weighting difference between Democrats and Republicans are a result of an enthusiasm shift. As for the Men/Women, I was a bit puzzled at the weighting differences in several categories. However, I cranked out the numbers for around an hour and finally concluded that many of the shifts (including the Male/Female breakdown) had no impact whatsoever on the topline numbers. I crunched the numbers for Male/Female and for what I thought was a bit confusing re-weighting of the area codes. Neither impacted the top-line numbers.

    This poll was taken after Obama came to Vriginia, Deeds Country started and Deeds started going on air. It might very well be possible that Democrats might be tuning in to this race. I do however think that those that are trying to paint a Deeds double digit margin by looking at the tiny sample taken after McDonnell's thesis was revealed (the margin on that sample is +/- 10%) are jumping the gun. We need to wait for more polling to look at the Thesis effect.

  2. Bigvinu says:

    Tom,

    The weighting difference between Democrats and Republicans are a result of an enthusiasm shift. As for the Men/Women, I was a bit puzzled at the weighting differences in several categories. However, I cranked out the numbers for around an hour and finally concluded that many of the shifts (including the Male/Female breakdown) had no impact whatsoever on the topline numbers. I crunched the numbers for Male/Female and for what I thought was a bit confusing re-weighting of the area codes. Neither impacted the top-line numbers.

    This poll was taken after Obama came to Vriginia, Deeds Country started and Deeds started going on air. It might very well be possible that Democrats might be tuning in to this race. I do however think that those that are trying to paint a Deeds double digit margin by looking at the tiny sample taken after McDonnell's thesis was revealed (the margin on that sample is +/- 10%) are jumping the gun. We need to wait for more polling to look at the Thesis effect.

  3. Tom White says:

    I think one strange thing is that yesterday, the margin of error was reported as 11%, but the PDF file says 4% or 4.5%, can't remember exactly. And it was a very small sample. Oddly, I think the results of this poll are probably more accurate than the last, I just have a problem with their methods.

  4. Bigvinu says:

    The margin of error is around 10-11% on the sample taken after the Thesis was revealed (almost 90% of the poll had already been completed by then). Of the people polled after the thesis, Deeds led 50-42, but lagged 49-42 among the entire polled electorate. The margin for the entire poll is lower (+/- 4.0%)

  5. Tom White says:

    Thanks for the clarification, Bigvinu. I knew I had heard that rather high margin. Have you seen any information on the internals of just the "post thesis" data? I have only found the overall internals. I am curious if the demographics of the respondents after the thesis were similar, or really skewed. It looks like if they were going to discuss those numbers, they should release them as well so we can take a closer look.

  6. Tom White says:

    Thanks for the clarification, Bigvinu. I knew I had heard that rather high margin. Have you seen any information on the internals of just the "post thesis" data? I have only found the overall internals. I am curious if the demographics of the respondents after the thesis were similar, or really skewed. It looks like if they were going to discuss those numbers, they should release them as well so we can take a closer look.

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  1. […] poll shows about the same results as a PPP poll released yesterday, but Rasmussen is historically one of the most accurate in the business, and many question the PPP […]


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Tom White Says:

Nothing is more conservative than a republican wanting to get their majority back. And nothing is more liberal than a republican WITH a majority.

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