Fox News has all but declared Doug Jones the winner for the Senate seat tomorrow despite the fact the every other poll has it neck-and-neck. I see Politico has picked up on the story, and no doubt everyone else will too.
“Democrat Doug Jones holds a 10-point lead over Republican Roy Moore among likely voters in deep red Alabama. Greater party loyalty plus higher interest in the election among Democrats combined with more enthusiasm among Jones supporters gives him the advantage in the race to fill the U.S. Senate seat previously held by U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions.”
Great! Except, well Politico did take the time to point this little nugget out:
“One potential explanation for the difference between the Fox News’ poll and other surveys: Jones leads Moore by 30 points among voters interviewed on cell phones, who tend to be younger, while the race is even among voters interviewed on landlines.”
Which is true. The other niggling detail related to age, is the raw data break point is at age 45. Not something like maybe 30, so we can’t see how many young people they got on their cell phones and have no idea. Another troubling detail is the poll doesn’t show how any of the real numbers break down, they only give percentages.
In other words, this could very well be skewed to younger, less fucked-up people, we simply don’t know.
The single most important data to me would be a comparison of likely voters, to how they had voted previously. All we have to go buy is percentages.
The %’s seem right, but hey if you take into account what percentage of people “don’t know” even though they are likely to vote tomorrow, and the fact all pollsters have already pointed out multiple times that people are not admitting to the fact they are going to vote for Roy Moore….well, add that to the +/- 3 points margin of error and Moore could win 50%-48%. Which is a lot closer to every other poll numbers.
Now when we add in their stated breakdown of +/- margin of error on the representation of likely voters that previously voted for Clinton or Trump, their stated margin of error looks like this:
(The far column being likely voters, the closer being registered voters.) That is a potential 9% swing in likely voters tomorrow, which again would make it look closer to every other poll.
In other words, this poll is crap. It could be very highly skewed in representation of Clinton voters and young voters and there’s no reason to think it isn’t, but we simply don’t know because they haven’t given us all of the raw data, only the data most easily misrepresented.
During the presidential election, it was made clear that a big effort was under way to make the race so shitty and awful that it would suppress the Democratic vote. This is the sister to that successful bitch. Make it seem so rosy that there is no need to vote. Because Doug Jones can’t possibly lose. Fox news already told you so and everyone else is running with it. he leads by 10 points with a +/- of 3 points. Can’t lose. Can’t.