We’re all getting used to those on the right claiming for months that public opinion polls on the presidential race have been ‘skewed’ to favor President Obama in some “lame stream media” conspiracy to drive down Republican turnout. Hell, the paranoid folks on Fox News have even bought into that and other ‘claptrap’ claims by various Republican “luminaries.” Ex- G.E. CEO, Jack Welch; ‘Birther-inChief,’ Donald Trump and loony (‘Commies in Congress’) Florida Congressman Allen West, have all recently charged—without any evidence—that the Bureau of Labor Statistics “cooked the books” on September’s jobs report showing that unemployment has dropped to 7.8%.
So what of the various polls and punditry on last night’s Vice Presidential Debate? Well, it seems that—most objective polls (VIDEO)—have reflected that Joe Biden clearly beat Paul Ryan on substance—if not on style—one major cable news network, CNN, released its own post-debate poll showing just the opposite.
I know Americans are all somewhat numb to all the arcane polling done by all sorts of organizations…from Gallup (the granddaddy of presidential polls) to all the lesser known ones, like Pew, Wall Street Journal/USA Today, Rasmussen, Zogby, etc., etc. It almost seems like anyone with a telephone, a two-bit calculator and Internet access can promote their own poll to supposedly “inform” the public or…sway public opinion.
What is important to note and remember, however, is “Caveat emptor” (let the buyer beware). Many of these lesser-known polls are not objective in the least but, actually, either run by political partisans or commissioned outright by one party or the other or, by a particular interest group. So it is all the more disturbing when a supposedly impartial, respected news organization like CNN will actually release a poll it knows is inaccurate and highly misleading.
In this case they were at least candid enough…or foolish enough…to print a “disclaimer” right along with the results showing Ryan won the debate 48% to 44%. Apparently, they were so embarrassed, however, that they printed this in tiny type…just like the notorious “fine print” in a contract, legalese the seller hopes you won’t notice.
Well folks…since those on the right want to play fast and loose with unfounded conspiracy theories relative to facts and statistics in polls and government data; here’s CNN’s teeny-tiny disclaimer enlarged for all the world to see.
According to This Poll
A CNN/ORC International post-debate poll shows that 48% of likely voters think Paul Ryan won the vice-presidential debate, while 44% think Joe Biden won. SPECIAL NOTE OF CAUTION #1: This poll does not and cannot reflect the views of all Americans. It only represents the views of people who watched the debate. SPECIAL NOTE OF CAUTION #2: The sample of debate-watchers in this poll were 31% Democratic and 33% Republican. That indicates that the sample of debate watchers is about eight points more Republican than an average CNN poll of all Americans, so the respondents were more Republican than the general public.
There’s an old saying that “sunshine is the best antiseptic.” How true. I sure hope this CNN poll is merely a ‘faux pas’ and an isolated incident. I sure hope that Rupert Murdoch hasn’t somehow achieved a secret buyout of CNN and added it to his far-wrong media empire.
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