Pollster.com’s graphs can be misleading. See, when you use the default setting, it doesn’t show changes in the race because it plots an average point over the entire race. However, polling picks up as an election approaches and, not surprising, early polling data is pretty darn useless at that point.
Here’s what Pollster.com’s default chart shows in the Governor’s race:
Wow, it looks like Kasich continues to build on his lead and Strickand’s support is flat? The Carpetblogger likes to use this graph all the time lately. However, even he has admitted that the race has tightened. So why use a graph that has settings that creates trends lines that are insensitive to recent changes in the poll over the past month, especially when it shows trends nobody believes is accurate? Nobody believes that Kasich is running away with this.
So, what happens when you ask Pollster.com to graph more sensitive trend lines?
Does this more accurately reflect what we’ve been seen in polling? Absolutely. Why doesn’t Keeling use it? Because it doesn’t fit his narrative that Kasich’s isn’t bleeding support quickly, and that Strickland hasn’t actually moved at all.
If you’re curious, here’s what the graph looks like if you set pollster.com to draw the trend lines as insensitive as possible.
Even a less sensitive trend line shows a closer race than the default chart Keeling uses to push his false narrative. Notice that the more sensitive race moves Kasich’s numbers down a three points and Strickland’s up a point. By drawing trend lines that take into account the increase in the volume and frequency of polling recently as the election approaches, Kasich’s lead is cut over half (from a +7.8% lead to a +3.7%… which puts the aggregate comfortably within almost any polls margin of error.)
Incidentally, until two weeks ago, Keeling was a big fan of the Real Clear Politics and its aggregate. Keeling has said over and over this cycle “It’s all about the aggregate.” Now, he never mentions it. I wonder why:
Because RCP shows Kasich cratering and Strickland surging. Keeling made much to do with the fact that Fox News’ poll (which is done by the same polling outfit and methodology as Rasmussen which showed (shock!) the same numbers as… the most recent Rasmussen) showed a four-point improvement from the last one. Even though Keeling denies he cherry picks his data and although Fox News is the only poll that shows any statistical movement in Kasich’s favorite (consider the source) when all others, including a Quinnipiac poll released the same day shows the opposite, Keeling actually wrote the words: “Strickland’s situation is deteriorating.”
Because of that tiny curls at the end? You see that smaller gray chart at the bottom? That’s RCP net polling aggregate advantage.
On September 28th, Kasich saw his aggregate lead go from +9.2 to +4.5. What is that advantage a week later? +4.2. Even with the Fox News poll induced curl at the end, John Kasich still is showing a deteriorating polling environment. And Jon Keeling has moved from the Commonwealth of Virginia to the State of Denial.
He attempted to yet again claim that Nate Silver said something he actually said the opposite of. Today, Keeling said that Silver said any talk of a Strickland surge was premature. He talks about how Silver projects that Kasich has an 85.8% chance of winning. Never mind that Silver himself has written that people are reading too much into those chances. Never mind that two weeks ago, it was a 92.3%. Never mind that Silver’s election night projections has the race narrowing, for the second week in the row within his margins of error.
Keeling’s other dozy? Strickland hasn’t broken 43%. Never mind that the most recent Ohio Poll had Strickland at 45% and Reuters had him at 46%… and then there’s Strickland’s internal. Never mind that.
Never mind that today, the Washington Post shifted the race back into the “Tossup” category.
Never mind Pollster.com, RCP, the Washington Post, and the fact that every daily newspaper tomorrow is going to have a story about how Kasich used an actor and real-life thief/forger in his false attack ad on the eve of the final debate of the race.
Yep, once you ignore all that, then you can claim that I’m the one panicking.
Never mind Keeling.
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