Tag Archives: polling

To win, Republicans should focus on economics

fairtax

As I have written a number of times here on CDN, the GOP is viewed very negatively by the majority of the American public, especially women, youngsters, and minorities – key demographics that the GOP absolutely must win over to remain a viable party, let alone to win future elections.

What is the key to winning their votes? It’s not accepting amnesty for illegal aliens or abortion on demand. Instead, Republicans should focus like a laser on the issue most important to these groups (and to the American electorate at large): the economy.

According to Gallup polling, economic issues (jobs, economic growth, the federal budget, taxes, fair trade) are by far the most important issues for American voters, far more than education, healthcare, or foreign policy. Yet, these days, we seldom hear Washington and the media talk about anything other than Benghazi, Syria, the Obama admin scandals, immigration, and social issues. While these issues are not irrelevant, they pale in importance compared to the economy. It doesn’t matter if the Benghazi scandal is investigated fully if the economy doesn’t recover and unemployed Americans (including college grads) don’t find jobs.

It’s the economy, stupid!

Republicans need to note that and act accordingly. Luckily, there’s a huge opening for Republicans here, because, as stated above, BOTH major parties and the media seldom talk about the economy, despite its importance to American voters (including the key demographics listed above), so Republicans have a chance to distinguish themselves from the Democrats.

From now on, Republicans should devote only a minimum amount of time and hearings to Benghazi, Syria, Obama admin scandals, and social issues, and devote the vast majority of their time and legislation to the economy, while also conducting town hall meetings, listening tours, and media interviews on that subject – and thus, force the media and the Democrats to shift the subject of the national discourse to the economy.

Thus, Republicans would force Obama and the Democrats to fight on grounds favorable to Republicans – grounds where the Democrats cannot win.

But just talking about the economy won’t be enough; one must also propose, and attempt to implement, effective policies. Specifically, Republicans should pass in the House, and introduce in the Senate, bills that would:

  1. Cut spending seriously along the lines proposed in the Ryan Plan or, even better, the Republican Study Committee’s plan, e.g. the RSC’s Spending Reduction Act.
  2. Privatize government-owned enterprises such as Amtrak, the Postal Service, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, etc.
  3. Provide full funding and a permanent authorization for the Export-Import Bank, which supports US industry and exporters without providing any subsidies.
  4. Institute the Export-Import Certificates for foreign countries proposed by Warren Buffett – thus allowing foreign countries to export to the US only as much as they import from the US, and also institute strict product quality standards on foreign (including Chinese) products.
  5. Strengthen Buy American laws.
  6. Utterly reject any form of amnesty for illegal aliens and dramatically cut down the levels of immigration, both legal and illegal, while making it easier for highly-skilled foreign workers and university grads to immigrate to the US and contribute to the US economy.
  7. Block-grand Medicaid to the states and pass Medicare and SS reform.
  8. Pass legislation that would legalize fracking throughout the country, open all shale oil and NG reserves, open the ANWR and the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska, authorize the Keystone Pipeline over Obama’s objections, and authorize offshore oil drilling.
  9. And most importantly, abolish the IRS, the Internal Revenue Code, and the 16th Amendment and replace them with the FairTax (H.R. 25). The IRS is not an agency whose powers have been abused – the IRS and the federal income tax are DESIGNED for abuse. They are DESIGNED to be tools of oppression per se. Making the income tax flat, or eliminating section 501(c)3, or “improving oversight”, or passing a mild reform bill will NOT solve the problem, because it would still leave the IRS (with its awesome audit and status denial powers and its huge bureaucracy) and the income tax (which punishes people for productivity and takes away what they’ve earned) still in place. So a flat income tax would change NOTHING. ONLY the FairTax bill (H.R. 25) would solve the problem by abolishing the IRS and the income tax FOREVER, mandating the destruction of all personal records held by the IRS (except those related to SS, which would be transferred to the SSA), and initating the repeal of the 16th Amendment.
  10. States should also enact significant economic reform by cutting taxes and spending, implementing tort reform (including the Loser Pays rule), and adopting Right-to-Work laws.

Last but not least, Republicans should explain, in detail, to average Americans how exactly these policies would benefit them directly. This is something that Republicans have so far failed to do.

In trying to win future elections, Republicans will be climbing uphill. But the economy is not an issue of just one special interest group or one demographic. It is an issue which all Americans care about, and the vast majority prioritize above all other issues, yet, the media and Washington seldom talk about it. If Republicans start prioritizing the economy instead of Benghazi and Syria, they’ll show the public they are totally different – they’ll offer a totally different, and a much different, product to a public that is eager to buy it.

RepubliKKKans Fail to Defeat Obama

The Associated Press image of white America.

Tuesday I spent almost an hour waiting in line with a bunch of racists. Previously I would have described the experience as I waiting in line to vote, but thanks to the Associated Press, I now know different.

A recent AP poll on racial attitudes proves conclusively that should Obama lose the election, journalists will blame his defeat on white Republican racists.

According AP, “Racial attitudes have not improved in the four years since the United States elected its first black president, as a slight majority of Americans now express prejudice toward blacks whether they recognize those feelings or not.” (emphasis added). How’s that for white America being bad to the bone?

The survey also confirms the vast majority of mainstream journalists still suffer from chronic liberal guilt, a pre–existing malady Obamacare will actively promote.

The Thought Police at AP explained, “The Associated Press polls were designed to dig into one of the most sensitive subjects in American Politics: racial attitudes and their effect on how people will vote in an election in which the nation’s first black president could be re–elected.

Overall the survey found that by virtue of racial prejudice, [Obama could lose] an estimated net loss of 2 percentage points due to anti–black attitudes…”

The Obama defeat story practically writes itself, particularly when Monday’s Rasmussen Reports tracking poll has the race at 49 Romney and 48 Obama.

The AP survey was not conducted over the phone. Instead the respondents were invited to complete the questionnaire on a computer because: “Studies have shown people are more willing to reveal potentially unpopular attitudes on a computer than in questioning by a live interviewer.” They certainly watch a lot more porn and use bad language online, so why not express unpopular attitudes, too.

But since AP researchers know white supremacists are devious and will try to mislead earnest scientists by doing something like electing a black president; they also tested “implicit” racism by means of an “affect misattribution” test. They claim this is accurate because social scientists say so.

What they don’t tell you is the research sample is often composed of a handful of university graduate students that need the credit for participating or simply need the money. The test is taken in an artificial environment where the subjects know they are being tested (see Heisenberg Effect for details). Then ‘mirabile dictu’ the test confirms what the “scientists” already knew.

The “affect misattribution” test —America Found Guilty — involves flashing photos of people of different races (ugly, fierce, plain, beautiful, the number of variables beggars description) for a nanosecond or two. Followed by a neutral image — in this case a Chinese character — and asking whether the logo for egg foo young is a pleasant or unpleasant symbol.

In an earlier time this technique was called “subliminal advertising” and it was found unpersuasive when used to try to convince movie goers to buy more Coke; but AP is convinced this technique will root out those who still think Rodney King should have gotten his behind kicked.

As David Moore points out, when you apply the same AP “methodology” to black subjects, you find 43 percent of the blacks express “anti–black sentiments.” While 30 percent of the whites express “anti–white” sentiments (no word on whether this group was composed of journalists or Democrats).

Maybe it’s just me, but I would question the accuracy of a survey that purports to reveal hidden white Republican racism, when it also “reveals” 43 percent of the black sample doesn’t like blacks either. Unless they are self–hating black Republicans.

Even if you ignore the voodoo part of the test the normal questions only confirm AP’s stereotype of white Republican racists.

To goad survey takers into being explicitly racist, the questioners ask if they agree, “Other minorities overcame prejudice and worked their way up. Blacks should do the same without special favors,” “it’s really a matter of some people just not trying hard enough; if blacks would only try harder…” and “blacks who receive money from welfare could get along without it if they tried” to name but a few.

By my count the only one they left out was “Jackie Robinson was a credit to his race.”

As for the special condemnation of Republicans, you simply have to take AP’s word for it, since readers are denied access to the crosstabs.

But as I write this at 12:47 AM, the mainstream media won’t have to blame racists for defeating Obama, because he was re–elected. Instead results of this poll will simply be saved for some time in the future when reporters need to explain Republican motivation for opposing that nice President Obama, assuming it ever happens.

Yes, Nate Silver is a Joke

If you’ve ever gone on Nate Silver’s 538 Blog for The New York Times, you’ll see where reality ends, and fantasy begins.  It was more vividly displayed after the third and last presidential debate where I wrote, in a previous post, for Hot Air that “the headline for his [Silver’s] October 23 post after the last presidential debate read ‘Obama unlikely to get big debate bounce, but a small one could matter.”  Talk about grasping at straws.

Still, with the contest being so tight, any potential gain for Mr. Obama could matter. Mr. Obama was roughly a 70 percent Electoral College favorite in the FiveThirtyEight forecast in advance of the debate, largely because he has remained slightly ahead in polls of the most important swing states.

If Mr. Obama’s head-to-head polling were 2 percentage points higher right now, he would be a considerably clearer favorite in the forecast, about 85 percent. A 1-point bounce would bring him to 80 percent, and even a half-point bounce would advance his position to being a 75 percent favorite in the forecast.

Still, Mr. Obama should not take even that for granted. There have been some past debates when the instant-reaction polls judged one candidate to be the winner, but the head-to-head polls eventually moved in the opposite direction.

[…]

So, since Obama is ahead of Romney within the margin of error, why does that constitutes a win for the president?  I think most analysts would put a 2-4 point lead, for any candidate, in the toss-up column – especially for a battleground state.  Thus, making his 70% prediction of an Obama victory a nonsensical exercise.   Silver has states listed as toss-ups on the blog, but didn’t reference them here.

Furthermore, Silver’s notion that a half point ounce would increase Obama’s probability of re-election to 75%, a 1 point bounce to 80%, and a 2 point bounce to 85% is abjectly senseless.  He is lying and waiting for a miracle to happen.

However, while we shouldn’t expect much from a former Daily Kos blogger, he seems to be keeping liberal spirits high.  As Rosie Gray at BuzzFeed wrote on October 29:

Here in New York, Silver is very much on the tongue of the media and the left-leaning professional elite: Everyone from photographers to the managing partner of a major law firm cops to hitting refresh every hour to stay sane. And out in the Democratic hinterlands, the reaction is much the same.

“I was at a Halloween party last night and it was just kind of funny because we’re down here in South Carolina and none of these people are media people or DC kind of types,” said Teresa Kopec, a substitute teacher from Spartanburg, South Carolina. “And they were kind of whispering to each other, ‘But Nate Silver says…’”

“If people have heard of him down here in South Carolina that’s kind of amazing,” Kopec said.

Furthermore, Gray noted that “some Democrats, meanwhile, concede that their affection for the wonky analyst is less the details of his model than the consistency of his message.”  That being Obama wins – in every projection he runs.

With Silver catching flak it wasn’t long before his allies at The Washington Post, namely Ezra Klein, decided to jump in front of the train for his liberal colleague. “Before we get too deep in the weeds here, it’s worth being clear about exactly what Silver’s model — and that’s all it is, a model — is showing. As of this writing, Silver thinks Obama has a 75 percent chance of winning the election. That might seem a bit high, but note that the BetFair markets give him a 67.8 percent chance, the InTrade markets give him a 61.7 percent chance and the Iowa Electronic Markets give him a 61.8 percent chance. And we know from past research that political betting markets are biased toward believing elections are more volatile in their final weeks than they actually are. So Silver’s estimate doesn’t sound so off,” says Klein in his October 30 post on the WonkBlog.

Klein then goes on to trivialize the whole matter by saying:

…it’s just as important to be clear about this: If Mitt Romney wins on election day, it doesn’t mean Silver’s model was wrong. After all, the model has been fluctuating between giving Romney a 25 percent and 40 percent chance of winning the election. That’s a pretty good chance! If you told me I had a 35 percent chance of winning a million dollars tomorrow, I’d be excited. And if I won the money, I wouldn’t turn around and tell you your information was wrong. I’d still have no evidence I’d ever had anything more than a 35 percent chance.

There are good criticisms to make of Silver’s model, not the least of which is that, while Silver is almost tediously detailed about what’s going on in the model, he won’t give out the code, and without the code, we can’t say with certainty how the model works. But the model is, at this point, Silver’s livelihood, and so it’s somewhat absurd to assume he’d hand it out to anyone who asks

Here’s the catch.  We know his code.  In fact, anyone of us can replicate Silver’s methodology on Microsoft Office.   As Sean A. Davis, COO of Media Trackers, wrote in The Daily Caller on November 1:

Silver’s key insight was that if you used a simple simulation method known as Monte Carlo, you could take a poll’s topline numbers and its margin of error and come up with a probability forecast based on the poll. The effect of this method was to show that a 50-49 lead in a poll with 1,000 respondents wasn’t really a dead heat at all — in fact, the candidate with 50% would be expected to win two-thirds of the time if the poll’s sample accurately reflected the true voting population.

To a political world unfamiliar with mathematical methods that are normally taught in an introductory statistics course, Silver’s prophecy was nothing short of miraculous.

But was it? To find out, I spent a few hours re-building Nate Silver’s basic Monte Carlo poll simulation model from the ground up. It is a simplified version, lacking fancy pollster weights and economic assumptions and state-by-state covariance factors, but it contains the same foundation of state poll data that supports Nate Silver’s famous FiveThirtyEight model. That is, they are both built upon the same assumption that state polls, on average, are correct.

After running the simulation every day for several weeks, I noticed something odd: the winning probabilities it produced for Obama and Romney were nearly identical to those reported by FiveThirtyEight. Day after day, night after night. For example, based on the polls included in RealClearPolitics’ various state averages as of Tuesday night, the Sean Davis model suggested that Obama had a 73.0% chance of winning the Electoral College. In contrast, Silver’s FiveThirtyEight model as of Tuesday night forecast that Obama had a 77.4% chance of winning the Electoral College.

So what gives? If it’s possible to recreate Silver’s model using just Microsoft Excel, a cheap Monte Carlo plug-in, and poll results that are widely available, then what real predictive value does Silver’s model have?

That’s a very good question.   In the meantime, this is Silver’s Electoral College and Election forecasts, which were updated at 7pm on November 4.  Immerse yourself in the ignorant – or delusional – bliss.

 

The Real Number for Republicans

William Way, Jr.

There are some interesting hard numbers developing in the Republican battle for the presidency.

Out of the 2,966,000 ballots cast so far in the primaries and caucuses the Republican candidates ought to be concerned. None of the candidates are showing a propensity to generate sufficient support within the party to be able to beat Obama.

For instance, Mitt Romney is pulling 38.88% of the republican vote. Additionally, he has now lost contests in four states. More precisely Romney has attracted 1,181,857 votes.

Yes, there are a lot of states still in play but the reality is that Mitt’s best showing was only 16,486 votes in New Hampshire, or only 50% showing. Yes, he drew more votes in Florida, but to what end? By outspending his opponents by enormous percentages he garnered only 46% of the vote. To beat Obama he is going to need to convert over 83% of the votes which went to other Republicans. Without that base Mitt Romney cannot defeat Obama.

The numbers are not looking very good for Mitt Romney

What is even more worrisome within the Romney fright night repeat of 2008 is that most of the political insiders have been shouting his name as the inevitable poster child for Republicans against Obama, particularly since his Florida victory. His showing in Minnesota should have been quite strong for the inevitable nominee. Yet, he attracted less than 17% of the vote. Even without campaigning seriously he should have drawn better than third place.

Rick Santorum

To date Rick Santorum has been punishing Romney in four states. Newt won one, and Romney has displayed two victories. Rick Santorum has spent less than than both front men of the political money laundering scam being perpetrated on the public by the “Super Pacs”.

The career ambition chasers in the Republican field simply are not getting the message being delivered by the people. Santorum comes across sincere, authentic and intelligent. Mitt smirks at the people every time he looks in the camera. I have concluded that he has a flagellation problem with all those chicken **** grins he has for the media. Newt is a great guy. He is clearly the smartest man in the room. However, every time he enters the room he has a new idea. America is looking for a candidate with values AND focus. I’m not going to go off on Ron Paul because reasonable people have long ago discarded him as a serious candidate.

Despite what the money diggers in DC say about Romney, the Republican Nomination is now Rick Santorum’s to loose. He has a clear cogent concise message. The people like it, even when Mitt spends millions to tell us to think otherwise.

In America, as nowhere else on Earth, we get the government we deserve. After four years of Obama the hard numbers are suggesting that the people are saying emphatically “We deserve better”.

Democrat Pollsters Ask Obama To Step Aside


Pollster Pat Caddell (Jimmy Carter) and Douglas Schoen (Bill Clinton) have asked President Barack Obama to step aside, to not run for reelection in 2012 for the good of the Democrat party. If Obama cannot run on his record, he will need to wage the most negative campaign in history to stand any chance of winning. With his job approval ratings below 45% overall (and below 40% on the economy), Obama cannot affirmatively make the case that voters are better off now than they were four years ago. He knows that they are worse off. The Democrat pollsters recommend Hillary Clinton. Mrs. Clinton, they say, is better positioned to win in 2012 than Obama, and that she is better positioned to govern if she does win.

Obama could still win re-election in 2012. But the kind of campaign required for his political survival would make it almost impossible for him to govern throughout a second term.

If Obama is not willing to step aside, then the two Democrat leaders in Congress, Sen. Harry Reid and Rep. Nancy Pelosi, must urge the president not to seek re-election – for the good of the party and (the pollsters say) most of all for the good of the country.

The Democrat pollsters also say that by seeking re-election and being heavily in partisan mode, Obama has guaranteed that the remainder of his term will be marred by the resentment and division that have eroded our national identity, common purpose, and economic strength. Mrs. Clinton, they say, has unique experience in government as first lady, senator, and Secretary of State. She is more qualified than any presidential candidate in recent memory. Her election would arguably be as historic an event as the election of President Obama in 2008.

There is almost no chance that Obama would take himself out of the race. But there are those in the Democrat Party, especially in legislative offices, who would fear a very bad election in 2012, if Obama’s popularity continues to decline. So, it is possible that pressure could be brought to bear on Obama next year to not seek reelection.

So get ready. The “Dump Obama, Draft Hillary” strategy has begun. There’s still time for Democrat party unhappiness with Obama and the growing fear of losing the White House and the Senate to scare them. The big money donors on both coasts will quietly go to Obama next spring, urge him to be a realist, and pull the plug on his reelection plans.

But that’s just my opinion.