January 26, 2020

Impeachment polling oddities

I was looking at the impeachment polling on Real Clear Politics today and I noticed a couple of things.  I'm normally not a poll junkie.  I watch them, but I don't inherently trust them.  They are easily manipulated.   Without reading the details to each you cannot say for certain that the poll was conducted properly.  I'm not saying any particular poll is deliberately off, but so much can be wrong.  

Overall, president Trump is indeed seeing more people against impeachment than for it. A couple of things struck me, just at a high level.  There's a lot more beneath the surface but I'll keep this simple. 

But there's some odd things in the polls.  Fox is consistently a remove poll. CNN you expect a anti-Trump bias but Fox you'd expect either fair or the reverse.  I find that odd.  

One other thing on the overall polling - The above water average for the president includes Gallup, which polls all adults not just registered voters.  That's concerning since it is a poll that helps his impeachment average.  Conversely none of the polling is among likely voters.  That works in his favor.

Then there's the polling among independent voters.

Independents have Fox once again as a highly pro-impeachment polling outlier.  It makes me think Fox has some polling issues. If you look at ABC/WaPo polling independents are +9 against but their overall polling is only +6.  It has Democrats at +69 for remove and Republicans at +79 against.  

That means that if Independents are +9 to keep Trump, and Republicans are +79 yet overall it's only +6 to not impeach then there are enough Democrats in the poll to pull the average towards impeachment by 3 points from the independents.  That means there are a lot of Democrats in the poll.  A lot.  That's a common way the polls can be skewed.

But none of this accounts for Democrat voters who voted for Trump in 2016.  And even that does not account for how much of that 2016 effect was just anti-Hillary, or the effects of the current economy.

Impeachment is not going to happen.  It's a partisan effort and not poll driven.  But that does not mean it will not have an effect on the election in November.  It may shift voters.  It may cement other voters and and increase the intensity of support for either side.  It's too early to tell that.  But there's a lot of yardage between now and the election and the impeachment will be long in the rear view mirror by then.  Democrats will try to make it otherwise, probably to their detriment.  We shall see.

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