Cialis On Line
Here is an op ed I sent to the New York Times on Oct.12, 2007, commenting on the “frontrunner” status of Rudy Giuliani and the “commanding lead” enjoyed by Hillary Clinton.I post this now because 1) I didn’t have a blog site last October, and 2) the article has taken on new relevance in light of the post by ABC’s Gary Langer on “A Look Back at the 2008 Primary Season,” June 3, 2008 – cialis on line.My rejected article shows that my concerns about using national polls to comment on the nomination contests, posted on Pollster.com, are not just ex post facto; cialis on line. Cialis on line: i was not alone with concerns last year, but I saw no other articles with this point of view that were seen as fit to print by the major news media. Cialis on line: the mesmerizing vision of dominant frontrunners for each party’s presidential nomination trumped the reality that there were none.
Polls and The Phantom Electorate
by David W. Cialis on line: moore (sent to ‘email@example.com’, Friday, October 12, 2007 11:35 AM)
If we believe the media polls these days, Rudy Giuliani remains the “frontrunner” in the national 2008 Republican presidential nomination, while Hillary Clinton maintains a “commanding lead” in the national Democratic race.And who doesn’t believe the polls? There is no objective yardstick by which to judge their accuracy, and they provide interesting – if irrelevant – numbers, so what’s to argue?
Of course, everyone knows that there is no “national” electorate for the nomination process.Yet, all the media polls dutifully report the vote preferences of Democrats and Republicans for their respective party’s candidates based on national samples; cialis on line. Cialis on line: this phantom electorate includes many people who will not vote in any primary and who have little familiarity with the candidates. Cialis on line: still, it is convenient and relatively cheap to create (by asking election questions of Democrats and Republicans in national polls that are being conducted anyway), which makes the phantom electorate attractive to pollsters regardless of its irrelevance to the nomination process.
That process, of course, starts in Iowa and a week later shifts to New Hampshire. Cialis on line: we’ve all seen in past election campaigns that the New Hampshire vote is greatly affected by what happens in Iowa, and the vote in subsequent states is usually affected by what happens in the first two contests.In 2004, Howard Dean’s 8-point lead in New Hampshire, and also his national 17-point lead, evaporated after he lost to John Kerry in Iowa; cialis on line.Kerry went on to win New Hampshire by 11 points, and two weeks later, the phantom (national) electorate dutifully recorded its acceptance of the primary process, giving the Massachusetts senator a 35-point margin over the second ranking candidate.
This doesn’t mean the victors in Iowa and New Hampshire always win their respective party’s nomination, but it’s naïve to pretend the early contests have no effect on subsequent primary elections; cialis on line.Yet, that seems to be the case with the current designation of Giuliani as national frontrunner for the Republican nomination – cialis on line. Cialis on line: the polls in the two early contests show Mitt Romney ahead of the pack, with Giuliani trailing badly in Iowa and modestly in New Hampshire.Romney also appears to be leading in Nevada cialis on line, while Fred Thompson is leading in South Carolina.It’s hard to see Giuliani as a frontrunner for the nomination when he is not the frontrunner in any of the first four nomination contests.
On the Democratic side, Hillary Clinton can justifiably be tagged as the frontrunner, not because she leads nationally, but because she has large leads in all the early primaries – with her most tenuous lead in the Iowa Caucuses – cialis on line.Still, I would be cautious about characterizing her advantage at this point as “solid” or “commanding.” Pollsters typically ask voters their preferences “if the election were held today.” That question elicits only a small proportion who say they are undecided, because it’s so easy to pick any name, knowing that it doesn’t really matter.After all, the election is not today; cialis on line.So cialis on line, respondents give an off-the-cuff response, and the poll results suggest a more decisive electorate than is the case, which is why Clinton’s lead appears “solid.”
The truth of the situation is suggested by the latest CNN/WMUR poll in New Hampshire, conducted by the UNH Survey Center, which did the unusual when it asked respondents (before the vote choice question) if they had definitely made up their minds whom to vote for when the primary is actually held next January.Just 17 percent said yes, while another 28 percent said they were leaning toward a candidate – cialis on line.Over half, 55 percent, admitted they were still trying to decide.
When the interviewers then asked respondents their preferences if the election were held today, only 11 percent acknowledge indecision, while Clinton led Barack Obama by 43 percent to 20 percent.Those were the reported results cialis on line, conforming to the conventional wisdom that Clinton’s lead is “commanding.” But the real situation, taking into account the vote of the “definite” and “leaning” voters measured in the first question, showed the Democratic electorate in New Hampshire favoring Clinton with only 24 percent of the vote (two-thirds of which was in the “leaning” category), while Obama trailed with 10 percent (more than half classified as “leaning”), hardly the “commanding” lead for Clinton that the conventional figures suggest – especially since only one in six voters had definitely made a firm decision, and more than half said they were completely undecided.
The media polls could give us a more accurate measure of voter sentiment than they do now, but apparently it’s not very interesting to report a large undecided vote.So we have a “frontrunner” who trails in all the early contests, and a candidate with a “solid” lead though more than half the voters are undecided.Hard to believe…but that’s what the media pollsters tell us.