Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Day Twenty-Eight: Assigned Readings

Oddly enough, it appears that the Telegraph-Journal did not publish any polling data from the Corporate Research Associates today. They've done it throughout the campaign, but instead today are trumpeting the poll I told you about that was produced by Abacus Data.

They are, however, comparing the two polls in this article here. It seems relatively straight forward that since Abacus polled over a few days and CRA polled over seven days that the results would be different - along with the fact that two different polling firms will always come to different conclusions when the margin of error is about four points.

From the CBC, we have a piece by Donald Savoie, saying that New Brunswickers have some tough choices ahead of them but that the two main parties are not telling them the truth.

Instead, they appear to be hurling accusations and insults at one another over senior care.


  1. As I noted below, you won't see any more CRA polls in the T-J unless they start showing the Liberals in the lead. It would hardly be the first time buried a poll that showed inconvenient results.

    The T-J's not really a newspaper anyhow (it hasn't been for about six years). Think of it as the corporate newsletter in a company town. It's just another vehicle for the bosses to tell the workers what to think.

  2. Actually, CRA doesn't poll in the last week of an election campaign. So no conspiracy.

  3. That's a bit cowardly on the part of CRA. By not polling in the last week of the campaign - they never have to have any accountability. If the final results are close to their last poll from a week out - they can say "Look, we were dead on!!" and if the final results are quite different, they can wash their hands of the affair by saying "obviously there was a last minutes swing in the final week after we stopped polling"

  4. It's a double-edged sword. On the one hand, they can be commended for not influencing the campaign in the last seven days. On the other hand, it does exactly what you say.

    While my pollster ratings take into account the length of time between their last poll of a campaign and election day, perhaps I should tweak it to punish the polling firms rather than reward them by giving them more leeway if they don't have a poll four or five days (or more) before election day.

    I have a lot of little changes like that planned for the future to make the projection model more sophisticated and accurate.

  5. If their excuse for not polling in the last week of the campaign is that they don't want to "influence" the campaign - that seems very lame. Why is OK for their polling to "influence" four out of five weeks of the campaign, but somehow in the final week - they rediscover their virginity?

    The one thing that strikes me as being laughable about the NB election is how low the stakes are. I have been following the campaign pretty closely online and I could not tell you how the Liberals and PCs differ from one another. I know its a cliche in the NDP to say "Liberal, Tory same old story", but this is one case where it really is the same old story. You could literally swap the platform of one for the other no one would know the difference. Good luck trying to plot the parties of NB on a "left-right" continuum.

  6. Quick question for you Eric.

    Ekos dropped back to releasing polls once every 2 weeks for the summer.

    Have you heard yet, if they are going back to releasing every week now that parliament is back in session?

  7. DL, I don't know if that is there reasoning for not polling in the last week, I only know that they won't be polling.

    Barcs, I will try to find out.


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