Polling is an integral part of any election season. As such, we want to display those polls and poll results that are relevant to our readers: Gallup; Pew Research; Rasmussen; Real Clear Politics; networks (NBC/WSJ, CBS, ABC, CNN, Fox) and others as relevant.

Truth about media narratives and political polls

from The Gray Area:
Surprisingly, there is a lot of truth in the post below from the Columbia Journalism Review (CJR). Normally a far left leaning media spokes-newsletter, in this post it says out loud the major issues with political polling:
  • polls are hard to separate from the expectations the media has of them and the ways in which we talk about them—and about politics as a whole.
  • polls do not merely reflect some abstract notion of public sentiment but rather exist within a media feedback loop
  • our coverage shapes people’s perceptions of the world, which they then feed back to us through polls, which we then (often) cover as if we played no role in shaping them
  • If Biden is underwater, such critics argue, that’s because his coverage is currently—and many might argue unduly—awash in negativity
  • media does have the power to shape public perception
  • If we have the power to shape perception, though, this is true regardless of the proportionality and substantiveness of our coverage. So the question of how we present polls still applies
  • ABC at the top of its Sunday-morning show This Week—which, as various critics pointed out, sent its own message, intentional or not, as to how they viewed the worth and reliability of its findings
  • how one could “even publish [such] a poll
In addition to this insight, CJR also gets to important considerations regarding polls and political reactions to them:
  • A blanket refusal to publish outlier polls strikes me as untenable
  • there are polls and the narratives journalists weave from those polls—and polling postmortems and the narratives journalists weave from those postmortems—and these things often do not align.
  • the two outlets can’t claim the poll is an outlier given that a survey they published earlier this year also showed a significant lead for Trump over Biden
Read this post and remember that political polls Do NOT represent public opinion. They are presented both because they produce a message that supports a media political narrative, or, a message can be produced from them to support a media political narrative which then creates a public reaction and/or opinion that supports the narrative.
from CJR:
Yesterday, a pair of polls drove a great deal of discourse in political media. One, from NBC News, wasn’t especially remarkable in isolation—it showed deep voter misgivings about both President Biden and his likely 2024 presidential challenger, Donald Trump, and found that the pair would be locked in a dead heat among registered voters if the election were held today, 46 to 46 percent. The other poll, from the Washington Post and ABC News, also found voter misgivings about Biden. But its head-to-head numbers were astonishing, showing Trump leading Biden by ten points—52 to 42 percent—among registered voters. (ABC led its coverage of the poll with a slightly lower margin—51 to 42 percent—reflecting the responses of all adults.) ABC’s main story about the poll splashed the head-to-head numbers in its headline. The Post’s topline framing was more circumspect: the paper’s headline focused on criticism of Biden’s performance, and while the subhead mentioned the head-to-head finding, it noted that it “does not match other recent polling… suggesting it is an outlier.” This WaPo/ABCNews poll did neither, which is why the political and media class roundly criticized it and wished it had not been published, and the right applauded the situation. More From CJR:

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