Atlas Forum

Election Archive => 2016 U.S. Presidential General Election Polls => Topic started by: heatcharger on October 16, 2016, 06:09:20 pm



Title: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: heatcharger on October 16, 2016, 06:09:20 pm
Link. (http://midnightsunak.com/2016/10/16/midnight-sun-exclusive-new-poll-shows-trump-clinton-tied-alaska/)

Trump - 37% (-1)
Clinton - 36% (+6)
Johnson - 7% (-4)
Stein - 3% (+1)

Conducted Oct 11-13. 500 LV.

I don't believe this is an internal poll from any specific campaign, so in my opinion, this deserves its own thread.


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: voter1993 on October 16, 2016, 06:10:58 pm
I see Trump winning this plus has a democratic tilt.. i take this with a grain of salt.


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun: Trump +1
Post by: Fusionmunster on October 16, 2016, 06:11:14 pm
Thats alot of undecideds.


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Lief 🐋 on October 16, 2016, 06:14:34 pm
Wow, nothing like a SUNDAY NIGHT SHOCK POLL to start the week!


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Maxwell on October 16, 2016, 06:17:15 pm
I see Trump winning this plus has a democratic tilt.. i take this with a grain of salt.

i do too but wow even Trump +6 is incredibly weak.


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Eraserhead on October 16, 2016, 06:18:02 pm
So Clinton is picking up some Johnson people, I guess.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: cinyc on October 16, 2016, 06:18:46 pm
This is an internal poll for the Alaska Democratic party.  Midnight Sun had nothing to do with conducting it.  You probably should remove the reference to Midnight Sun from the title.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: GeorgiaModerate on October 16, 2016, 06:22:15 pm
This is an internal poll for the Alaska Democratic party.  Midnight Sun had nothing to do with conducting it.  You probably should remove the reference to Midnight Sun from the title.

It should probably go to the Internal Poll megathread.


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: voter1993 on October 16, 2016, 06:24:03 pm
I see Trump winning this plus has a democratic tilt.. i take this with a grain of salt.

i do too but wow even Trump +6 is incredibly weak.

It is trump we won't see 2012 margins in republican states this time around, he will win these states but not by big margins like mitt romney.


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Secret Cavern Survivor on October 16, 2016, 06:25:19 pm
Internal and AK polls in general suck, but still, wow.


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: dspNY on October 16, 2016, 06:26:25 pm
Even with my 5 point rule, Trump +6 in Alaska is very weak


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: rafta_rafta on October 16, 2016, 06:32:20 pm
This is an internal poll, already being discussed in that thread


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Fmr. Pres. Griff on October 16, 2016, 06:35:07 pm
Thats alot of undecideds.

Usually, I'd say "junk poll". In a state like AK, though, that number of undecideds - even at this point - isn't necessarily a deal-breaker.

Everybody should also remember that AK is the only state to swing Democratic in the past three elections (Bush +31, Bush +26, McCain +22, Romney +14). All good things must come to an end, but it's not a stretch based on recent AK swings to see this as a low-to-mid single-digit race. If we see that happen this time, then AK definitely is trending hard toward the Democrats.


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: RJEvans on October 16, 2016, 06:44:15 pm
Thats alot of undecideds.

Usually, I'd say "junk poll". In a state like AK, though, that number of undecideds - even at this point - isn't necessarily a deal-breaker.

Everybody should also remember that AK is the only state to swing Democratic in the past three elections (Bush +31, Bush +26, McCain +22, Romney +14). All good things must come to an end, but it's not a stretch based on recent AK swings to see this as a low-to-mid single-digit race. If we see that happen this time, then AK definitely is trending hard toward the Democrats.

Can anyone with insight to AK politics explain this. Why would Alaska trend Democrat. And it's quite consistent since 2000. I'm surprised by that Romney number.

All the polls so far show AK in the single digits. She won't win it, but it will be within 10 points I think.


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: NOVA Green on October 16, 2016, 06:48:22 pm
I called it awhile back, that Trump is extremely vulnerable in Alaska, but even if one uses a +5 rule for internals, my "surprising prediction" from a few hours ago, and various comments over the past few weeks, this is definitely a state in play for a ton of reasons.....

Pacific Northwest will be solid Democrat come November.... even "way up North to Alaska... North of Russia's own" in the words of the great classic country/folk artist Johnny Horton back in the '50s.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JSt0NEESrUA


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: darthpi on October 16, 2016, 06:57:24 pm
Thats alot of undecideds.

Usually, I'd say "junk poll". In a state like AK, though, that number of undecideds - even at this point - isn't necessarily a deal-breaker.

Everybody should also remember that AK is the only state to swing Democratic in the past three elections (Bush +31, Bush +26, McCain +22, Romney +14). All good things must come to an end, but it's not a stretch based on recent AK swings to see this as a low-to-mid single-digit race. If we see that happen this time, then AK definitely is trending hard toward the Democrats.

Can anyone with insight to AK politics explain this. Why would Alaska trend Democrat. And it's quite consistent since 2000. I'm surprised by that Romney number.

All the polls so far show AK in the single digits. She won't win it, but it will be within 10 points I think.

If I had to guess, I'd say the Alaska Native population is probably either trending Democratic and/or is voting at higher turnout rates. I was there last summer and from what I understand the native population tends to have pretty strong concerns about climate change.

The borough maps for the elections in Alaska on Wikipedia seem to indicate the areas with high Alaska Native populations seem to be trending Democratic the most strongly.


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: dspNY on October 16, 2016, 06:58:56 pm
Thats alot of undecideds.

Usually, I'd say "junk poll". In a state like AK, though, that number of undecideds - even at this point - isn't necessarily a deal-breaker.

Everybody should also remember that AK is the only state to swing Democratic in the past three elections (Bush +31, Bush +26, McCain +22, Romney +14). All good things must come to an end, but it's not a stretch based on recent AK swings to see this as a low-to-mid single-digit race. If we see that happen this time, then AK definitely is trending hard toward the Democrats.

Can anyone with insight to AK politics explain this. Why would Alaska trend Democrat. And it's quite consistent since 2000. I'm surprised by that Romney number.

All the polls so far show AK in the single digits. She won't win it, but it will be within 10 points I think.

Not an expert on Alaska politics, but could it be an increase in Native American population? (which trends Democratic). Remember, Alaska was only 64% non-Hispanic white according to the last census


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: heatcharger on October 16, 2016, 07:18:06 pm
Remember, the race will be declared at 11 PM ET, and will essentially be over many hours before that. Alaska's polls close at 12 PM ET. The idea that demoralized Trump voters won't bother voting is very intriguing.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Clinton and Trump in a "statistical tie"
Post by: mark_twain on October 16, 2016, 07:33:56 pm

Getting closer in this state for Clinton.

Let's see how AK looks after the last debate!


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Clinton and Trump in a "statistical tie"
Post by: GeorgiaModerate on October 16, 2016, 07:34:56 pm
Boos for using the awful term "statistical tie".


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: NOVA Green on October 16, 2016, 07:40:31 pm
Thats alot of undecideds.

Usually, I'd say "junk poll". In a state like AK, though, that number of undecideds - even at this point - isn't necessarily a deal-breaker.

Everybody should also remember that AK is the only state to swing Democratic in the past three elections (Bush +31, Bush +26, McCain +22, Romney +14). All good things must come to an end, but it's not a stretch based on recent AK swings to see this as a low-to-mid single-digit race. If we see that happen this time, then AK definitely is trending hard toward the Democrats.

Can anyone with insight to AK politics explain this. Why would Alaska trend Democrat. And it's quite consistent since 2000. I'm surprised by that Romney number.

All the polls so far show AK in the single digits. She won't win it, but it will be within 10 points I think.

Alaska is a state that is extremely ornery when it comes to the politics of the lower 48.

This is a state, that is one of most dovish in the country when it came to the Gulf of Tonkin Resolution, where there where two Senators that called BS on the authorization for war in Vietnam (The other was Oregon).

It is a state, that similarly to Texas views itself as being virtually an independent country, but was and is essentially the final frontier of Western expansionism, as part of the foundation myth of Alaskan exceptionalism.

Alaska is also a state heavily dependent upon natural resource extraction with Timber and Fishing, being major sources of employment that recognizes the value of "renewable natural resources" to the point where so see an odd alliance between environmentalists and workers in the industry on total agreement regarding issues like sustainability.

Exxon-Valdez also crystallized this in a dramatic manner where we all saw back in the late '80s how one single oil spill did not only destroy sensitive ecological areas, but also destroyed the livelihoods of small fishermen dependent upon the Salmon runs and other harvests for their livelihoods.

Fast forward into the 1990s and 2000s, the politics of oil extraction shifts the statewide dynamics, and it amounts to a real paycheck into the pockets of every Alaskan, even citizens going to college/university out of state (Like one of my friends back in the late '90s).

Obama was the first Democrat in many years, that both ran as opposed to an extremely unpopular war in Iraq (Way up North in Alaska), while also striking the right balance between jobs/environment in a resource dependent state.

In general Alaskans don't like "Billionaires" from New York telling them what to do, and additionally as I have stated on other threads previously, making insane foreign policy platform claims regarding "Seizing Iraqi Oil" doesn't play so well when all of the residents of Alaska get a check from the oil industry as part of a negotiated state sovereign deal gig.

Clinton is likely seen as more favorable to the American domestic petro industry than Obama, considering her holdout on Keystone back in the primaries, and Trump seems like an a** even in roughneck oil country, fishing/cannery jobs, etc...





Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Clinton and Trump in a "statistical tie"
Post by: Alcon on October 16, 2016, 07:46:08 pm
Boos for using the awful term "statistical tie".

^

Burn it in a fire!


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Clinton and Trump in a "statistical tie"
Post by: Secret Cavern Survivor on October 16, 2016, 07:48:58 pm
Boos for using the awful term "statistical tie".

^

Burn it in a fire!


Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: ProudModerate2 on October 16, 2016, 08:50:24 pm
Wow, nothing like a SUNDAY NIGHT SHOCK POLL to start the week!


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: ApatheticAustrian on October 16, 2016, 08:57:26 pm
does anyone know how the people of alaska in general feel about russia?



Title: Re: AK-Midnight Sun/Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: kyc0705 on October 16, 2016, 09:59:18 pm
Wow, nothing like a SUNDAY NIGHT SHOCK POLL to start the week!

This week is going to be wild.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: kyc0705 on October 16, 2016, 10:00:14 pm
does anyone know how the people of alaska in general feel about russia?



They can see it from their houses.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: ApatheticAustrian on October 16, 2016, 10:03:05 pm
They can see it from their houses.

ah ah ah ah ah! ;)

just wanted to figure out if trump's russia stand swings any votes up there...one way or another.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: ag on October 16, 2016, 10:44:12 pm
does anyone know how the people of alaska in general feel about russia?



Other than a miniscule number of Alaskans of Russian/Mestizo origin - the barely surviving remnants of the old colonization - I doubt many others have any opinion on Russia that is substantially more developed than that of Idahoans.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: ag on October 16, 2016, 10:44:39 pm
They can see it from their houses.

ah ah ah ah ah! ;)

just wanted to figure out if trump's russia stand swings any votes up there...one way or another.

Probably not.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Badger on October 16, 2016, 11:11:30 pm
does anyone know how the people of alaska in general feel about russia?



They can see it from their houses.

Beat me to it. ;)


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Landslide Lyndon on October 17, 2016, 02:43:45 am
Now, if only Sarah Palin hits the trail for Trump then these 3 electoral votes will be in the bag for Clinton.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: rafta_rafta on October 17, 2016, 04:07:05 am
Was this an internal poll? Because 538 just entered it into their tracker


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Alcon on October 17, 2016, 04:09:02 am
Was this an internal poll? Because 538 just entered it into their tracker

Yes.  Not sure of their policy, but although a Dem firm, Lake is reputable and I doubt they'd massage their data for their client.  The bigger problem with an internal like this is that it's likely to be released selectively, i.e., only when it shows a good result.  But 538's staff may feel like they have enough information about past polls from Lake that this is less of a concern.  Not sure.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Gass3268 on October 17, 2016, 06:08:13 am
Was this an internal poll? Because 538 just entered it into their tracker

If a internal poll is made public they will enter it into their average, but it will be weighted accordingly.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: HillOfANight on October 17, 2016, 09:11:23 am
Was this an internal poll? Because 538 just entered it into their tracker

Yes.  Not sure of their policy, but although a Dem firm, Lake is reputable and I doubt they'd massage their data for their client.  

http://elections.huffingtonpost.com/pollster/polls/lake-research-d-24267
Clinton 50 Trump 37 on April 2016 in Georgia.

http://politics.blog.ajc.com/2016/07/25/georgia-democrats-polling-shows-state-is-in-play-in-november/
Clinton 41
Trump 40

Just from their Georgia results, I would prefer a more traditional pollster to believe #BattlegroundAlaska.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Dr. RI on October 17, 2016, 10:22:26 am
Did we really enter an internal into the database?


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: BetoBro on October 17, 2016, 01:03:30 pm
The Clinton campaign should troll Trump by releasing an ad here with his endorsement from Sarah Palin. That could help swing the race her way even more up there.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: MT Treasurer on October 17, 2016, 01:05:25 pm
Did we really enter an internal into the database?

mds32 likes to enter every single poll into the database, but I mean you literally added the MN-Breitbart/Gravis poll,so...


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Dr. RI on October 17, 2016, 01:12:26 pm
Did we really enter an internal into the database?

mds32 likes to enter every single poll into the database, but I mean you literally added the MN-Breitbart/Gravis poll,so...

Which wasn't an internal...


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Alcon on October 17, 2016, 02:46:30 pm
Was this an internal poll? Because 538 just entered it into their tracker

Yes.  Not sure of their policy, but although a Dem firm, Lake is reputable and I doubt they'd massage their data for their client.  

http://elections.huffingtonpost.com/pollster/polls/lake-research-d-24267
Clinton 50 Trump 37 on April 2016 in Georgia.

http://politics.blog.ajc.com/2016/07/25/georgia-democrats-polling-shows-state-is-in-play-in-november/
Clinton 41
Trump 40

Just from their Georgia results, I would prefer a more traditional pollster to believe #BattlegroundAlaska.

That is a weird poll result, but it was during the primary, and Lake has a long-term record that's pretty good.  I agree we shouldn't enter internals, though, because many are skewed and the releases are so selective.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Badger on October 18, 2016, 01:09:31 am
Did we really enter an internal into the database?

mds32 likes to enter every single poll into the database, but I mean you literally added the MN-Breitbart/Gravis poll,so...

Which wasn't an internal...

::)


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Alcon on October 18, 2016, 01:28:24 am
Did we really enter an internal into the database?

mds32 likes to enter every single poll into the database, but I mean you literally added the MN-Breitbart/Gravis poll,so...

Which wasn't an internal...

::)

I'm with him on this.  There are some bad polls out there, and polls with house effects, but the internals we get are so damn cherry-picked that there's almost no way to adjust for the way they skew averages.  Also, there's the nasty problem of credibly determining which public polls should be excluded.  Short of fraud, I say throw them all in and let things average out.  If they appear to skew one way, adjust for the house effect.  If they're crappy, consider them less the next time around.  But otherwise we get into subjective territory where crazy people start discounting CNN polls because THE MEDIA!11, etc.  Gravis is a pretty bad poll historically, and seems to have a GOP-leaning house effect, and I think it's better to adjust for that than throw them out selectively.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Gustaf on October 18, 2016, 02:06:53 am
Did we really enter an internal into the database?

mds32 likes to enter every single poll into the database, but I mean you literally added the MN-Breitbart/Gravis poll,so...

Which wasn't an internal...

::)

I'm with him on this.  There are some bad polls out there, and polls with house effects, but the internals we get are so damn cherry-picked that there's almost no way to adjust for the way they skew averages.  Also, there's the nasty problem of credibly determining which public polls should be excluded.  Short of fraud, I say throw them all in and let things average out.  If they appear to skew one way, adjust for the house effect.  If they're crappy, consider them less the next time around.  But otherwise we get into subjective territory where crazy people start discounting CNN polls because THE MEDIA!11, etc.  Gravis is a pretty bad poll historically, and seems to have a GOP-leaning house effect, and I think it's better to adjust for that than throw them out selectively.

I think the argument might rather be that a poll conducted for Breitbart is basically an internal for the Trump campaign. Which isn't totally unreasonable.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Badger on October 18, 2016, 02:21:05 am
Did we really enter an internal into the database?

mds32 likes to enter every single poll into the database, but I mean you literally added the MN-Breitbart/Gravis poll,so...

Which wasn't an internal...

::)

I'm with him on this.  There are some bad polls out there, and polls with house effects, but the internals we get are so damn cherry-picked that there's almost no way to adjust for the way they skew averages.  Also, there's the nasty problem of credibly determining which public polls should be excluded.  Short of fraud, I say throw them all in and let things average out.  If they appear to skew one way, adjust for the house effect.  If they're crappy, consider them less the next time around.  But otherwise we get into subjective territory where crazy people start discounting CNN polls because THE MEDIA!11, etc.  Gravis is a pretty bad poll historically, and seems to have a GOP-leaning house effect, and I think it's better to adjust for that than throw them out selectively.

I think the argument might rather be that a poll conducted for Breitbart is basically an internal for the Trump campaign. Which isn't totally unreasonable.

exactamundo.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Alcon on October 18, 2016, 03:57:42 am
Did we really enter an internal into the database?

mds32 likes to enter every single poll into the database, but I mean you literally added the MN-Breitbart/Gravis poll,so...

Which wasn't an internal...

::)

I'm with him on this.  There are some bad polls out there, and polls with house effects, but the internals we get are so damn cherry-picked that there's almost no way to adjust for the way they skew averages.  Also, there's the nasty problem of credibly determining which public polls should be excluded.  Short of fraud, I say throw them all in and let things average out.  If they appear to skew one way, adjust for the house effect.  If they're crappy, consider them less the next time around.  But otherwise we get into subjective territory where crazy people start discounting CNN polls because THE MEDIA!11, etc.  Gravis is a pretty bad poll historically, and seems to have a GOP-leaning house effect, and I think it's better to adjust for that than throw them out selectively.

I think the argument might rather be that a poll conducted for Breitbart is basically an internal for the Trump campaign. Which isn't totally unreasonable.

exactamundo.

I know that's the argument, but I'm saying that the biggest problem with internal polls is not their bias, but rather that they are not always released (so you can't just adjust for a known house effect -- they cherrypick certain results to release) or are basically engineered to generate a specific result (so they can't be compared apples-to-apples).  Even for crappy, skewed polls like Gravis, those things aren't generally a problem.

You could argue that Gravis is doing one of those things -- presumably the latter -- and thus it's not sufficient to merely adjust for house effect, because they're actually changing their methodology from poll-to-poll in a way that defeats that adjustment.  But there isn't direct evidence of that.  And, in absence of direct evidence, you get to a place where you start having to make subjective calls based on the existence of conflicts of interest, etc.  That gets you into territory where you're having to explain why you do that with Gravis/Breitbart polls, but not CNN polls or Fox News polls.

Do I think it's relatively likely that Gravis/Breitbart polls are dubiously manipulated?  Yes.  Do I have any direct evidence they are?  Beyond a Republican house effect -- which happens with plenty of honest pollsters -- no...they mostly just seem crappy.  Can I say with high certainty that they probably are manipulated?  No.

And, in light of that, I'd rather throw them on the data poll (adjusting for R house effect, and down-weighting because Gravis sucks) than opening up Pandora's box.

That said, Gravis literally sends me spam emails I never opted into, so I'm not 100% convinced they're even a legitimate business enterprise, so...I feel ya on some level.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Gustaf on October 18, 2016, 04:04:19 am
Did we really enter an internal into the database?

mds32 likes to enter every single poll into the database, but I mean you literally added the MN-Breitbart/Gravis poll,so...

Which wasn't an internal...

::)

I'm with him on this.  There are some bad polls out there, and polls with house effects, but the internals we get are so damn cherry-picked that there's almost no way to adjust for the way they skew averages.  Also, there's the nasty problem of credibly determining which public polls should be excluded.  Short of fraud, I say throw them all in and let things average out.  If they appear to skew one way, adjust for the house effect.  If they're crappy, consider them less the next time around.  But otherwise we get into subjective territory where crazy people start discounting CNN polls because THE MEDIA!11, etc.  Gravis is a pretty bad poll historically, and seems to have a GOP-leaning house effect, and I think it's better to adjust for that than throw them out selectively.

I think the argument might rather be that a poll conducted for Breitbart is basically an internal for the Trump campaign. Which isn't totally unreasonable.

exactamundo.

I know that's the argument, but I'm saying that the biggest problem with internal polls is not their bias, but rather that they are not always released (so you can't just adjust for a known house effect -- they cherrypick certain results to release) or are basically engineered to generate a specific result (so they can't be compared apples-to-apples).  Even for crappy, skewed polls like Gravis, those things aren't generally a problem.

You could argue that Gravis is doing one of those things -- presumably the latter -- and thus it's not sufficient to merely adjust for house effect, because they're actually changing their methodology from poll-to-poll in a way that defeats that adjustment.  But there isn't direct evidence of that.  And, in absence of direct evidence, you get to a place where you start having to make subjective calls based on the existence of conflicts of interest, etc.  That gets you into territory where you're having to explain why you do that with Gravis/Breitbart polls, but not CNN polls or Fox News polls.

Do I think it's relatively likely that Gravis/Breitbart polls are dubiously manipulated?  Yes.  Do I have any direct evidence they are?  Beyond a Republican house effect -- which happens with plenty of honest pollsters -- no...they mostly just seem crappy.  Can I say with high certainty that they probably are manipulated?  No.

And, in light of that, I'd rather throw them on the data poll (adjusting for R house effect, and down-weighting because Gravis sucks) than opening up Pandora's box.

That said, Gravis literally sends me spam emails I never opted into, so I'm not 100% convinced they're even a legitimate business enterprise, so...I feel ya on some level.

I feel like we're talking past each other. The poll is conducted for Breitbart. The founder of Breitbart is Trump's campaign manager. So one could argue that a poll conducted for Breitbart is a poll conducted for the Trump campaign and is an internal. Then all the arguments you brought would apply.


Title: Re: AK-Lake Research (D): Trump +1
Post by: Alcon on October 18, 2016, 04:20:43 am
I feel like we're talking past each other. The poll is conducted for Breitbart. The founder of Breitbart is Trump's campaign manager. So one could argue that a poll conducted for Breitbart is a poll conducted for the Trump campaign and is an internal. Then all the arguments you brought would apply.

Not quite, though.  I know it seems like I'm splitting hairs here, but I'm not.  Bear with me...

When a poll is commissioned out of the campaign budget, it's expected to serve some use for the campaign -- to test messaging, to provide actionable information, or to drive a media narrative.  That third reason is the only reason internals are released.  That means that even a well-conducted internal poll will only be released when it helps a certain narrative.  That also means that poorly-conducted, skewed internal polls are more likely to be released, since they're manipulated to conform with the narrative.  Taken together, the sample of internals you get is skewed both by manipulation and cherry-picking.  There is no reason for them not to be.

The Gravis/Breitbart polls are different in a few mitigating ways.  First, presumably all of them are released, whether it's good or bad for Trump, because they're released on a regular schedule.  That takes away the cherry-picking problem.  The second is that the media, at least in theory, has use for releasing unmanipulated polls.  Fox News viewers may "want" a certain outcome, but Fox News has other incentives to avoid manipulated or fabricated polls.  Internal polls do not.  You may think that Breitbart, by nature of why it's popular, has a lot less incentive than Fox News does.  I agree.  But Breitbart at least theoretically has such an incentive, like CNN or Fox; campaigns have absolutely no such incentive.

I agree with you that I'm incredibly skeptical of how much incentive Breitbart has to not manipulate.  But a lot of people are skeptical that CNN and Fox News aren't manipulating numbers to fake a competitive race...and it's true that they have an incentive to.  Dismissing Gravis/Breitbart opens up a slippery slope of objective interpretations about who's bought and sold and who's not.  I think that's reasonable for us to do in our personal evaluation of the polls, but I don't think it's a realistic question for a site like Atlas or FiveThirtyEight to adjudicate.

Sorry, I hope I'm not coming across as a pedantic ass (like usual!) but data curation is something I think a lot about for work, and I do think this is the only realistic policy Atlas could take.