10/15/2012 10:44 am ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

10/15/12 Pollster Open Thread

This open thread is to discuss all of the day's polls -- what they tell us about the election, their methodological strengths and weaknesses, notable findings others have missed or whatever else you want to talk about. Each day's open thread will appear in the morning and remain open for 24 hours. We also encourage you to use the "favorite" button to identify the most interesting or insightful comments.

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"Keep in mind that we really don't know who the "Registered Voters" are either. People are asked if they are registered and most everyone says they are - even about half of non-regstered adults. So asking a person if they are registered is just one filter toward trying to see what the electorate is like. A bigger screen is that the person was engaged enough in political issues to decide to talk to you in the first place. Then as the election gets close and people who are most likely to vote begin to take on further characteristics - pollsters apply an even tighter filter (e.g. asking about past voting experience, how sure they feel about their likelihood of voting, knowledge about voting procedures, and the like).

Hence it is all on a continuum and each pollster has their own way of making the LV call. But most importantly, the main assumption is that people who respond to a poll are representative of their demographic (age, gender, ethnic grouping, cell vs landline phone, ...) with respect to the issues being asked. It is the veracity of this assumption that truly makes the pollsters nervous - not the small differences between their LV vs RV methodologies." - dpearl

"I seem to recall one poll from 2004 that showed Bush leading Kerry in Hawaii that got conservatives jazzed up for a few hours. I would place a similar amount of confidence in this result. I think Arizona would be winnable for a Democrat, including Obama, but with much better economic fundamentals. As in, if the US unemployment rate was 6.1% today, I'd imagine Arizona would be a "toss-up." But, it isn't and it isn't. :)" - symanski