07/19/2013 05:04 pm ET

POLLSTER UPDATE: First Wyoming Senate Poll Puts Enzi Ahead


Liz Cheney begins her challenge to Mike Enzi in a deep polling hole. And though Republicans still lag on big data, Democrats can't seem to flag "hipster" on a voter file. This is the HuffPost Pollster update for Friday, July 19, 2013.

ENZI LEADS CHENEY IN WYOMING SENATE PRIMARY - HuffPost: “Sen. Mike Enzi (R-Wyo.) has a significant lead over primary challenger Liz Cheney, according to the first polling released on the 2014 U.S. Senate race in Wyoming. Enzi is ahead of Cheney by 55 percent to 21 percent among GOP primary voters, according to the Republican firm Harper Polling, which conducted the survey for the Conservative Intelligence Briefing blog. His favorable rating is 76 percent among Wyoming Republicans, with just 6 percent viewing him unfavorably.” HuffPost]

Wyoming politicians are generally popular - Dem firm Public Policy Polling, in 2011: “‘There’s no state in the country that loves its politicians like Wyoming,” said Dean Debnam, President of Public Policy Polling. “It has the most popular Governor and 2 most popular Senators we’ve ever polled on anywhere.’” [PPP]

Headlines: (h/t @LogalDobson)

-"Enzi Clobbers Cheney in First Public Poll of Primary #WYSEN" [Roll Call]

-"Poll: Mike Enzi crushing Liz Cheney in Wyo." [Politico]

-"GOP Poll Shows Enzi Crushing Cheney [TPM]

-"Early Poll Shows Enzi Crushing Cheney In Wyoming Senate Primary [The Blaze]

Not so fast - As popular as Mike Enzi appears to be, there are some signs his early lead could narrow: If the Harper poll is accurate, only half of Wyoming Republicans are ready to reelect him regardless of the opponent -- 48 percent say he "has done enough to deserve reelection" (though just 28 percent say they are ready to "give someone else a chance"). And Liz Cheney's father Dick has a favorable rating among Wyoming Republicans (74 percent) that rivals Enzi's. It's worth remembering that in the New Hampshire primary in 2008, Barack Obama had an 84 percent favorable rating according to the network exit poll. Hillary Clinton's rating was lower (74 percent), but she won more votes. For now, Liz Cheney trails far behind Enzi on name recognition -- 40 percent don't know her well enough to rate her, and only 15 percent rate her unfavorably. If the younger Cheney can boost her own numbers, however, she could narrow the vote preference numbers. [CNN]

REPUBLICANS STILL LAG ON BIG DATA - Elizabeth Wilner: “While Democrats have a flourishing industry of privatized data banks, serial experiments and competing consultancies, the party that espouses free markets and entrepreneurship is on Stalin’s Five-Year Plan when it comes to embracing Big Data. Democrats saw the viable business model of moving data outside the party but selling it to all friendly comers. Republicans basically moved their data out of the party in name—i.e., the Data Trust—and tax status only as a way to manage the cost of maintaining it. As a result, analytics remain bottled within the national Republican party structure. One respected party entrepreneur half-jokes that his fellow Republicans should remember the history lessons of Teddy Roosevelt’s ‘trust busting’ and ‘free the GOP marketplace to create the best data and tools for every Republican candidate.’ [Cook Political]

CHARLES FRANKLIN ON PPP SAMPLING METHOD - Earlier in the week, we reviewed critique by Republican pollster B.J. Martino of an unusual sampling procedure used by the Democratic firm PPP, that involves interviewing "more than enough people" then "randomly reject[ing] individual surveys from demographics that are overrepresented." On Wednesday, we published comments from two statistical gurus, Stanford University Prof. Simon Jackman and Columbia University Prof. Andrew Gelman. Today, Pollster co-founder and Marquette University Law School Prof. Charles Franklin adds his thoughts via Twitter: "PPP's poll balancing method...[m]ust be statistically inefficient but not necessarily biased. Post-stratification weights in PPP poll should achieve same goal but keep all cases-Should give equivalent estimates as random delete. Post-stratification weights would give estimate of design effect as empirical matter. Doubt design effect can be calculated with deletions. As others have said, DKos/PPP provide raw data, including deletions so this is an empirical question that can be answered. Not mere opinion." [@PollsAndVotes as compiled on Storify]

FRIDAY'S 'OUTLIERS' - Links to more news at the intersection of polling, politics and political data:

-Approval of U.S. Supreme Court falls to its lowest level since 2005. [Gallup]

-60 percent of Black Americans now attribute racial disparities in jobs, income and housing to something other than "discrimination against blacks," an increase of 12 percentage points since 1993. [Gallup]

-Amy Walter sees neither party "getting much of a headwind (or tailwind)" in 2014. [Cook Political]

-Harry Enten explains how Republicans could win big in 2014. [Guardian]

-Nate Silver examines whether presidential elections have a pattern of success for the incumbent party. [NYTimes]

-Stan Greenberg predicts Republicans will pay a price for gridlock in the midterm elections. [HuffPost]

-A Geoff Garin internal poll conducted for mayoral hopeful Bill Thompson shows him leading among likely black voters. [WSJ]

-Patrick Murray imagines ways for the New Jersey Democratic Senate primary to become more competitive. [Mounmouth Poll]

-Nate Cohn reviews the decline of Detroit in five maps. [New Republic]

-Jake Harris warns on the perils of polling Twitter. [Source]

-Walmart is polling D.C. residents on the D.C. Council's living wage bill. [DCist via @JoshdelaRosa]

-Pollster Jeffrey Pollock argues that “hipster is not a defining characteristic.” [TNR]

POLLSTER UPDATE VIA EMAIL! - You can receive this daily update every weekday via email! Just enter your email address in the box on the upper right corner of this page, and click "sign up." That's all there is to it (and you can unsubscribe anytime).