Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Early Democratic Voters in Florida...Are Voting for McCain?

Kim Preistap at Wizbang links to this local Florida paper article about early voting. Something is fishy with the results and I haven't yet been able to determine what the root cause is. But it is interesting enough to quote here.
Democrats are beaming that their party is outperforming the Republicans in early voting, releasing numbers Wednesday that show registrants of their party ahead 54 percent to 30 percent among the 1.4 million voters who have gone to the polls early.

"We're thrilled at the record turnout so far," said Democratic Party of Florida spokesman Eric Jotkoff. "It's a clear indication that Democrats want to elect Barack Obama and Democrats up and down the ballot so that we can start creating good jobs, rebuilding our economy and getting our nation back on track."

But party breakdowns for turnout aren't the same as final tallies, and at least one poll offered a different view for the campaign of Republican John McCain.

A Los Angeles Times/Bloomberg poll gave McCain a 49-45 lead over Democrat Barack Obama among Floridians who have already voted.

And Republicans continued to show a traditional strength, leading 50 percent to the Democrats' 30 percent in the 1.2 million absentee ballots already returned.
If you followed that, Democrats lead in early voting 54-30 yet Mcain leads 49-45 among these voters. Noting that these are exit polls and not actual tallies (and therefore are subject to inaccuracies just like opinion polling), this would have to mean that the following two things are true:
  1. Independents in FL are breaking hard for McCain.
  2. Obama is bleeding far more votes to McCain among Demcrats than McCain is losing to Obama among Republicans.
And this doesn't even consider the final data point of the quote that absentee ballots heavily favor Republicans. Given many absentee ballots are oversea military ballots (a group that breaks heavily for McCain) this is just fuel to the fire at this point.

At the same time, conventional polling shows FL handily in the Obama column? The pollsters might want to rethink their models.

For those curious, I took a stab at guessing the internals for this poll, if the numbers above are correct. Here is my best guess:

First I assumed each group gave 2% of the total to third party candidate--the 49-45 results has 6% missing. After that, even if I give McCain 100% of Republicans and Independents remaining, Obama still has to give McCain 13% of remaining Democrats (7% of 54% is 13%) to make the numbers work out. I just can't believe what the math suggests so something in the data quoted in the article must be amiss. If not, it is very good news for McCain in Florida.

1 comment:

knowitall said...

I will not look at the polls next election, because the mainstream media illuminati polled democrats, and then they made the GOP supporters lose their momentum.