Why 2018 is a Status Quo Election

DB DAILY UPDATE | 9/21/2018 | Staff
jenn1020 (Posted by) Level 3
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Annnndddd the race between Cruz and O’Rourke is…still all over the damn place. – A polling group that calls itself Vox Populi came out with a poll in the Texas senate race on Thursday, showing Ted Cruz and Irish Bob O’Rourke tied at 50-50 in the race. In its sample, Vox Populi included 39% Republicans and 36% Democrats, a sample that the group apparently feels is reflective of the Texas voter population.

Think about that for a minute. Texas is a state in which no Democrat has won a statewide election in 24 years. Not one. It is a state in which Republicans prevailed in the statewide elections four years ago by about 15-20 points each. It is a state in which the GOP voter turnout in the primaries earlier this year exceeded Democrat primary turnout by a whopping 50%, even though the Democrats had close contested races for the governor’s race and several other statewide offices.

Sound - State - Vox - Populi - Reality

Does that sound like a 39-36 state to you? I’m picking on Vox Populi, but the reality is that their sample is pretty typical of the samples being taken in polling in Texas this year. It is instructive to note that, four years ago, Texans were being treated to an array of polls about this time in the race pretending to show that Democrat Wendy Davis was a serious threat to Republican Greg Abbott in the governor’s race. Abbott won that race by 21% of the vote.

In fairness to Vox Populi, the group does say it applies a complex weighting method to its sampling, including this passage: “These screens significantly improve how reflective the sample is to the actual target voting population. Finally, Pop Polling weights survey results based on projected voter demographics. We do not weight on partisan affiliation or identification, helping reduce the...
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