President Mathgood Will Make Polling Great Again!

Donald Trump knows more than you do. He singlehandedly defeated ISIS, saved the economy, and forced those lesser countries to respect us again. Plus he went to Wharton! As a transfer student, and because someone owed his brother a favor, but still. No one can MATH good like Donald Trump, so if he tells you that the polls are on his side, you can take that to the bank. (Valid at Deutsche Bank only.)

LOL, we are silly today! Although, just this once, the Tweeter in Chief is actually talking about a real number, not one he pulled out of his voluminous ass. The New York Times surveyed voters in Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Florida, and Arizona and found that 94 percent of Trump 2016 voters opposed the impeachment inquiry. But six percent of his voters think it's Impeach the Motherfucker-Thirty, which is probably a fair indicator that they're not going to be pulling the lever for him in 2020.

All other things being equal, he cannot win any of those states next year if six percent of his voters defect to the Democrats. And even if they don't hop to the Blue Team, if six percent of Trump's 2016 voters just stay home in Michigan, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania, he loses.

But all other things are not equal in 2020. Hillary Clinton was loathed by a huge portion of the population, pollsters spent months assuring voters that her victory was inevitable whether or not they bothered to cast a ballot, and there was an unacknowledged Russian disinformation campaign working to depress Democratic turnout. No one today thinks their vote is irrelevant, and this time we see Boris and Natasha coming.

Plus, there's the whole impeachment thing. In 2016, James Comey and the GOP kept the investigation of Trump's horizontal mambo with Vladimir Putin locked down, while shouting about Hillary's emails from every rooftop. Now the only story that tops the impeachment investigation is whatever batshit insane thing Donald Trump said on any given day. And that is showing up in the polls, too. Let's let President Math Major take a crack at this one.

Ooooh, SO CLOSE. But you seem to have left out one, teeny detail.

While there is a 53-43 differential between supporters and opponents of removing Trump from office, the impeachment inquiry itself is supported by 49 percent of those polled, while only 46 percent oppose. Which is broadly in line with the the Pew Poll, which found 54 percent in favor the inquiry, and CNN which clocked 50 percent support.

Even Fox found 51 percent support for the impeachment investigation, which prompted the New York Post to swoop in and save Trump's wee feefees by unskewing those polls so they'd be more to his liking. The Post piece's author, Mary Kay Linge, appears to be a perfectly competent writer. But she's not a pollster, so perhaps we should take her facile analysis with more than a few grains of salt:

Princeton, New Jersey, pollster Braun Research, which conducted the survey, noted 48% of its respondents were Democrats. But the actual breakdown of party affiliation is 31% Democrat, 29% Republican and 38% independent, according to Gallup.

A poll weighted for party affiliation would have concluded that 44.9% favored impeachment and 44.4% opposed it, a Post analysis has concluded.

Hmmm, let's see what someone who actually does this for a living thinks of that logic. Take it away Steve Benen:

At first blush, the effort to discredit the results from the Fox News poll may seem compelling: if Gallup says 31% of the electorate is Democratic, while Fox's poll says it's 48%, then many might look at the results as weighted and misleading. The trouble is, the New York Post may not have looked closely enough at the Gallup data its analysis cited.

Gallup asked self-identified independents, "As of today, do you lean more to the Democratic Party or the Republican Party?" With these "leaners" added to the mix, the Democratic electorate goes from 31% to 49%.

In plain English, most so-called "independents" reliably show up and vote for the same party every cycle, so you can't just dump them from the sample to make your numbers look better for Trump. Which is exactly what pollster Geoff Garin said when he cited the Gallup polling showing that -- HA HA! -- 52 percent of Americans support the impeachment investigation.

WOMP WOMP. And a big mazel tov to Wharton on your famous alum! Y'all must be so proud.

[NYT Poll / New York Post / MSNBC]

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Liz Dye

Liz Dye lives in Baltimore with her wonderful husband and a houseful of teenagers. When she isn't being mad about a thing on the internet, she's hiding in plain sight in the carpool line. She's the one wearing yoga pants glaring at her phone.


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