Thursday, May 26, 2005

It Is Not 2008

I started to blog about this CNN story this morning, but deleted it before posting, deciding that I was making a big deal about nothing. But it continues to get press, and now I feel compelled to comment.

Since early this morning, CNN has had the results of this poll on the front page. The poll concerns the electability of Hillary Clinton. The original headline was something to the effect of "A majority would vote for President Hillary Clinton". Is it correct to give her that title? Wishful thinking by the folks at CNN? The data point they were pushing was the following:
The poll found 29 percent were very likely to cast a vote for Hillary Clinton for president and 24 percent said they were somewhat likely.

Seven percent were not very likely and 39 percent said they were not at all likely. The margin of error was plus or minus 5 percentage points.

The headline is now changed, reading "Poll: Mixed messages for Hillary Clinton." This is a more accurate description of the poll results which include:

But those saying they are virtually certain to vote against her topped those virtually certain to support her by 10 percentage points in the CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll.
My point was that it isn't 2008 and it is irresponsible (or at least shows a blatant bias) for a major news organization to be starting the campaign already. Or should we assume that Democrats plan to bicker with Bush and try to accomplish nothing for the next three years? My hope would be that no one would give the premature poll any press, but it has been picked up by polipundit:
However, it isn’t too early for Republicans to start targeting the likely opposition. According to a new Gallup Poll, 56% of registered voters consider the New York Senator a “liberal.” 29% said that they were very likely to vote for the Senator, while 39% said they were not at all likely.
McClure may be right--it might not be too early. But for the sake of the country, let's hope that it is. Three years is much too long a time waste in gridlock.

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