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The Unexplained Exit Poll Discrepancy

  1. Nov 18, 2004 #1
    The election has come and gone, but I find that in retrospect we now have two elections in a row where the exit polling has been completely discredited by the pundits and the spinsters. Has it been completely been overlooked that the polling serves a purpose other than giving the news services a lead,i.e. it provides a check against voting fraud and other hijinks? Have a look at this publication and tell me if you think it has credibility:

    "The Unexplained Exit Poll Discrepancy," Dr. Steven F. Freeman

    As Dr. Freeman states:
    "As much as we can say in social science that something is impossible, it is impossible that the discrepancies between predicted and actual vote counts in the three critical battleground states [Ohio, Florida, and Pennsylvania] of the 2004 election could have been due to chance or random error."

    He goes on to place the odds of this occurence at 250 million to one.

    Remember this has now happened twice with the exit polling and this "anomaly" cannot be dismissed. Given the history of voter fraud and shenanigans in this country are we witnessing the new voter fraud of the 21st century?
     
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  3. Nov 18, 2004 #2

    Ivan Seeking

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    Even if fraud, like everything else, most Bush supporters won't believe it or care.
     
  4. Nov 18, 2004 #3
    Or maybe the exit polls were fradulent themselves? The exit polls are no more reliable than pre-election polls. People do lie as well. I heard somewhere, though i don't remember where, that certain democratic party officials knew what locations would be exit polled and sent democrats there to skew them. Again i just recall hearing that, but that would not surprise me. It also wouldn't surprise me if local republican party told people to lie to exit pollers to discourage democrats from coming out to vote thinking kerry would win without them. Either way itsmore likely that the exit polls are just not accurate, the samples are too small to be effective.

    The democrats need to stop trying to invent reasons why they lost and just accept it.
     
  5. Nov 18, 2004 #4

    russ_watters

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    I have never seen a poll with a margin for error better than 3%. Exit polls are useless for calling close elections. The last election was so close that the conspiracy theories were to be expected. This election was still close, but nowhere near as close as the last one. I'm dismayed that some Democrats refuse to accept the reality that they lost.

    edit:
    Here's some REALITY
     
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2004
  6. Nov 18, 2004 #5

    kat

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    I know that freerepublic, which has a very large following, had threads encouraging voters to either refuse to answer exit poll questions or to lie.
     
  7. Nov 18, 2004 #6
    Still discrediting the polls?

    Partisanship aside: There is a concerted effort to discredit the exit polling, Why? This is not about partisan lines but about the integrity of the voting system and the accounting problems posed by the eletronic systems that are now in place. Exit polls are a means to check against the tabulated results in the case where questions arise and there is plenty of historical precidence for this as well as the validity of such. Now considering that the polls in some precincts exceeded the standard deviation, as noted in that report which I doubt anyone has read, it comes as a foregone conclusion that either the polls were invalidated or that there has been some fraud in the voting. Now are you willing to place the integrity of the voting sytem above partisanship?

    Let's get statistical! In this case where the vast majority of the voting was to go for either the democratic or republican canidate and that since it has been such a close race, we could in some small way liken this to a random brownian walk, i.e. flipping a coin and the stats that follow.
    Given a sufficient test group and a random sample, we can expect that even with such specious ideas that poll workers skewed the data, republicans lying to polsters, and the such, it stands to resaon that these would not significantly alter the data for large sample sets, i.e. it would stil fall within acceptable standard deviations. Now what the author has claimed is that within some precincts the data has been grossly outside that SD and this calls the process into question. His arguement seems sound to me givien that if, using the coin flipping notion, this is true then this would be much like flipping a coin 2^20 times and getting heads each time,i.e 1:2.5*10^8.


    It is another irony that the polls being discredted as they have, a lot of people seem to have no problem supporting the notion that most people voted the "morals" issue. Sorry but I have to raise a flag on that, you cant have it both ways.

    So are we to apply scientfic integrity here or are we to succumb to political bias?

    FYI: My voter registration identifies me as an "other" and I did vote for Kerry because I saw him as the lesser of the two evils.
     
  8. Nov 18, 2004 #7

    russ_watters

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    WRONG!! My position is directly supported by the founder of the company that carried out the exit polls. The problem is that people are misusing and misinterpreting them.
    WRONG! They were not designed for that purpose and to use them for that purpose is to misuse them.
    WRONG! (on both counts - did you read my article?). I read the article and there is a serious and obvious error in the analysis: the data used is not calibrated. The author of the article (again) wants it both ways: he wants to use the data but he doesn't want to use it as the people who collected it intended.
    Certainly. Are you?
    The article you presented is political bias cloaked in scientific integrity. I'm going to stick with scientific integrity.
     
  9. Nov 19, 2004 #8

    Ivan Seeking

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    http://www.yubanet.com/artman/publish/article_15415.shtml
     
  10. Nov 19, 2004 #9

    Ivan Seeking

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  11. Nov 19, 2004 #10

    GENIERE

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    "…By setting Electronic Voting equal to zero, we created a predicted percentage change in support for Bush without the effect of electronic voting. We added the predicted percentage change in support for Bush to the percentage of votes he received in 2000. This gave us a predicted percentage of votes for Bush in 2004, which we multiplied by the number of votes in each county to get a predicted number of votes without the effect of electronic voting. We then subtracted this number from the number of votes Bush received, as estimated by the full regression model, including the Electronic Voting effect. Summing these effects for the fifteen counties with electronic voting yields the total estimated excess votes in favor of Bush associated with Electronic…"

    Of course voters always respond in a predictive manner. Henceforth we need no longer vote.
     
  12. Nov 19, 2004 #11

    selfAdjoint

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    Dearly Missed

    Various people have been massaging these numbers today. Some of them, not Republicans, think the study has correlated variable problems. One guy said the only real discrepancy in the data was in Broward and Miami counties. Sound familiar?

    Meanwhile, Ohio is still industriously working over its disputed ballots. They find the huge majority of them are legitimate. There's probably only one chance in 1000 that an Ohio recount would reverse the election, but boy, would I ever laugh. After all the recriminations and breast beating and attempts to cozy up to the red states by the Democrats, then to have the White House handed to their shunned and derided candidate! High comedy! May it be so!
     
  13. Nov 19, 2004 #12

    Ivan Seeking

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    I love the smell of a Constitutional crisis. At this point nothing less will do.

    God save the mathematicians!
     
  14. Nov 19, 2004 #13

    loseyourname

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    From what I remember, the exit polls were skewed 60% toward women and were conducted more heavily in urban areas. If this is true, it would explain the obvious democratic bias. In fact, a couple of investigations have been launched to determine whether or not the polls themselves were rigged in an attempt to influence the election. But if you all want to trust an exit poll over the actual election counts, go ahead, make yourselves look that much more desperate.
     
  15. Nov 20, 2004 #14

    Ivan Seeking

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    Gee, I don't suppose we might actually listen to the statisticians.

    Absolutely nothing about this administration can be trusted. Any true American would be concerned about this until the question is resolved.
     
  16. Nov 20, 2004 #15

    Ivan Seeking

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    http://newsobserver.com/24hour/politics/story/1840889p-9743710c.html
     
  17. Nov 20, 2004 #16

    russ_watters

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    Sure - how about listening to the one who started the company that collected the data?

    I was generous in my characterization of the first article because I expected this thread would simply die. I'll be more explicit now: If the writer of the first study is qualified to be writing such a study, then the study is academic fraud. He knowingly and purposefully used data he knew was flawed.

    The basic problem with all these statistical analyises is the same - and its related to the reason the Democrats lost the election: when expectations conflict with reality, Democrats discard reality. Sorry, Ivan - you think you're posting evidence of fraud, when actually you're posting (further) evidence that Democrats refuse to accept reality if its a reality they didn't expect (or want). Instead of using the fact that less people voted for Kerry than expected to hint at crimes that there is no evidence for, use the data to fix your party. Use it to figure out what those voters want and figure out how to get them to vote Democratic.

    In other threads where people tried to explain why they voted for Bush, some were accused of lying(!) about who they were and why they voted. I'll repeat what I said in another thread: if you won't even accept that we exist, you have no hope of ever getting us to vote democratic.

    And in case there is any doubt about where I stand: I'm the guy the Democrats should be going after. I'm a liberal Republican who voted for 3 Republicans and 2 Democrats this time around. The reason for that is that on a state or local level, the candidates are less bound by the flaws in their party.

    edit: and one thing about the conspiracy theory in your last post: while the rest of this just looks like desperation, appeal to conspiracy theory is a real problem. Ivan, for your own sanity, take a step back and consider the path you're going down.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2004
  18. Nov 20, 2004 #17

    Ivan Seeking

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    I'll stick with Berkeley. Thanks for your typically inspired insights Russ.

    You do realize that its because of people like you that we're leaving.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2004
  19. Nov 20, 2004 #18

    loseyourname

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  20. Nov 20, 2004 #19
    the fix was in

    we were hacked!!!!

    that is the answer

    they cheated better

    in addition to lieing better

    morals,? what morals?
     
  21. Nov 20, 2004 #20

    russ_watters

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    Of course you will - the most liberal institution in the country is a place of comfort for you when reality conflicts with your desires.
    Yeah, we moderates are just evil. :rolleyes: Being so far to the left makes the center look pretty far to the right.

    There is another irony here I hadn't mentioned before: some Democrats are leaving the US because they lost a close election. All this desperation over a 3% loss. That's backwards logic. The fact that the election (and the last) was close means that while the Democrats' ideas don't have the support of the majority, they aren't that far off. I could see it as reasonable for you to consider yourself an outcast after Reagan's landslide victory, but not over a close loss.

    But maybe its like in sports - the close losses hurt more than the big ones. But thats an emotional response to something that should be analyzed logically. Remember what your mother told you about sportsmanship and get over it.
     
    Last edited: Nov 20, 2004
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