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Poll stories

Tuesday, Oct 31, 2006

I posted a bunch of poll stories late yesterday. Here’s a list with links.

* Tribune governor’s poll (44-29-13)

* Daily Herald governor’s poll (48-32-12)

* Tribune & Daily Herald Cook County Board prez race polls (Trib: 48-33 for Stroger; Daily Herald: 51-42 for Peraica)

* New polling in US House 6 & 8

Follow the links to discuss.

I originally had comments off, but this seems a good place to discuss polling in general this year, so they’re now open.

- Posted by Rich Miller        

  1. - Squideshi - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 8:34 am:

    I suspect that, on election day, when many people walk into the polling place, they’re going to see for the very first time that Rich Whitney is on the ballot; and as the only alternative to Blago AND Pinka, many people will vote for him.

  2. - Juice - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 8:48 am:

    Blago’s lead has remained consistent for months. He has stuck with his game plan and executed like a pro. Four more years of health care, increased education spending, clean air, new jobs, higher minimum wage, union protection, and unhappy republican holdover state employees. GO ROD GO

  3. - Reddbyrd - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 8:59 am:

    More testimony of what a drag the Brickhead is on JudyBore….they are in virtual deadheat in downstate.
    The deadly accurate Tribune pollapalooza says:
    The survey found independent voters divided in their support for governor–29 percent for Topinka, 28 percent for Blagojevich and 24 percent for Whitney. Blagojevich also was leading Topinka in the traditionally Republican-leaning collar counties–35 percent to 29 percent–and he trailed by only 2 percentage points Downstate.
    Bye bye bye Brick
    a dead

  4. - VanillaMan - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:04 am:

    There is something terribly wrong if these polls are even somewhat accurate. After weeks of losing newspaper endorsements, watching friends plead guilty, and media telling it’s listeners and readers to avoid electing a soon-to-be-indicted governor, you have voters saying this?

    Are voters really this stupid? I don’t think so.

  5. - Caveat Elector - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:29 am:

    The Daily Herald poll is a joke! They relied on a sample of 300 voters countywide? A margin of error of 6%? There should be rules against using such a shoddy poll sample! Where did they find these people, Tony’s home precinct? I agree with the Trib poll, this ain’t even close and Tony neglected his own district race and may lose there as well!

  6. - What? - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:30 am:

    Where did the Daily Herald take that poll? Arligton Heights?

    I think if you average the Trib and Herald, that’s probably where the race is really at right now.

    By the way, anyone seen that photo of Peraica with Pat Buchanan on his website? Nice ’stache.

  7. - Sango Dem - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 9:56 am:

    Have there been any new polls in the 18th? The last one I saw was around October 12 before Stover started his radio and TV ads. The last poll showed a big trend in Stover’s favor that I have to think will continue.

  8. - Southern Illinoisian - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 10:04 am:

    So many polls, so much useless information.

    Since you asked for comments, I get to re-iterate my favorite poll disclaimer.

    All of these telephone polls under-report the opinions of affluent voters, for the simple reason that affluent voters have greater access to phone-management tools such as Caller-ID, VOIP, or cell-only options, all of which defeat attempts to solicit opinions in this manner.

    Demographers will admit that affluence typically leads to conservative viewpoints. Therefore, conservative opinions, which lean Republican, are under-reported, giving false indication of leads for Democratic candidates.

  9. - Diversity of Thought - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 10:25 am:

    This is Zogby’s latest poll on “battleground” Senate and Governor’s races (difficult to navigate)

    OCT 31
    Blagojevich - 39.6%
    Topinka - 33%
    Whitney - 16%
    Undecided - 11.4%

  10. - Jaded - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 10:40 am:

    Does anyone else get the feeling that Squideshi is actually Bill’s alter ego?

  11. - Backyard Conservative - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 10:47 am:

    Check out Real Clear Politics for their analysis with link to their poll average on governor’s race:

  12. - Niles Township - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 10:52 am:

    I am a Dem who is stunned that either 42% or 48% of voters, depending on the poll, think that Toddler is qualified to be Cook County Board Prez, He can’t hold a candle to his dad, to Danny Davis (who would have been a better choice) or even to Tony Peraica! That’s why I’m crossing the aisle to vote Peraica on this race. As my mom always has said, the masses are *sses.

  13. - Scott Fawell's Cellmate - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 11:05 am:

    Topinka is polling at 29%.

    Alan Keyes got 28%.


  14. - Caveat Eligorum - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 11:16 am:

    Niles Twp:

    You have stated so many times on this blog that you plan to vote for Tony that I am starting to believe that you are a closeted Republican.

    The wonderful thing about elections is that the people get to decide whom they want to represent them, not us bloggers, as much as we wish that were true. Based on the Trib poll, the voters apparently want Todd Stroger. I disagree with your and your mom, the masses aren’t @sses, they are very smart. They are smart enough to see through the fog of deception that Tony Peraica spews forth.

  15. - Niles Township - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 11:26 am:

    Caveat Eligorum:

    Actually, I am a fairly liberal Dem who is pro-choice, anti-Death penalty, went to a very liberal college etc. I’ve voted for one GOPer for one office before. I have just had enough with the committemen, and Chicago corruption. I am only voting for Rod to get Pat which I have also said often on this blog. I am not pro-Tony as much as I am anti-the way this whole thing went down on the Dem side. The commiteemen were not representative of the vast majority of party members who would have jumped for joy over a qualified candidate like Danny Davis who has served as a congressman, county commissioner and alderman (with later two being with distinction and an above average record) and Forest Claypool as the interim prez who no doubt would have started some reforms rather than holding inagural parties as Bobbie Steele has. If the party does not get a needed lesson, then I fear it is a party that will be lost in this malaise for years. I am voting Tony to get a good Dem candidate in 4 years that I would love to be a ble to vote for! Don’t make such easy assumptions about the bloggers out here.

  16. - doubtful - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 11:27 am:

    “Demographers will admit that affluence typically leads to conservative viewpoints.” -Southern Illinoisian

    I’m not so sure that applies anymore to Chicago’s suburbs, but even if it’s a ‘given’ I’m sure if you consult those same demographers they will happily tell you that the have-nots vastly outnumber the haves.

    All they need is something to motivate them to vote.

    Another point you fail to consider is that those affluent people may be willing to answer polls. Maybe they feel like their opinion matters; maybe they simply don’t have to work two jobs and are home when a pollster calls.

    Either way, I find your generalization self-serving and inaccurate. You can find generalizations to support polling bias in either direction.

  17. - Caveat Eligorum - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 11:35 am:

    Niles Twp:

    You raise a good point here that needs to be addressed. And I appreciate that you understand that Forest Claypool was not eligible to be appointed to the ballot due to the fact that a candidate that ran and lost cannot be a candidate in the General Election.

    But the reality here is that the system was created to have the Committeemen from the 30 townships (like Niles) and the 50 Chicago Ward Committeemen appoint the candidate when there is a vacancy. You can be angry at the Committeemen for making the appointment they did (and apparently you do). But to elect an non-reformer like Tony Peraica is like cutting off your arm because you don’t like the gloves your mom bought you for Christmas. Tony Peraica is like crab-grass. Left unattended and he overtakes your lawn. Pull him out at the root and your lawn is plush.

    But Tony continues to spread his shi…er fertilizer and continues to grow, worse than any weed in the entire forest perserve system.

  18. - Avid Trib Reader - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 11:39 am:

    From the Trib article today:

    “In Chicago, where Stroger has seen a surge in support, the number of voters with an unfavorable opinion of Peraica has jumped a dozen percentage points in the last few weeks.”

    You just knew this would happen once people got a feel for the real Peraica.

  19. - Backyard Conservative - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 12:14 pm:

    Avid Trib Reader, Trib editorial today says Stroger campaign is lying about Peraica.,0,5121929.story?coll=chi-newsopinion-hed

    That might explain the poll shift. Let’s hope enough people who are fed up and reasonably informed vote Peraica for the election day poll that counts.

  20. - Avid Trib Reader - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 12:22 pm:

    Backyard Conservative:

    The poll shows that you and 15 other people read the Tribune editorials. Of those, 14 are republican voting for Tony anyway. So big deal.

  21. - Hmmmmmmmm - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 12:26 pm:


    The Herald Poll is almost two weeks old…

    Literacy is a great thing isnt’ it…

  22. - Scott Fawell's Cellmate - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 12:38 pm:

    Topinka is polling at 29%.

    Keyes got 28%.


  23. - Southern Illinoisian's Neighbor - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 12:46 pm:

    In 2004, Marylander Alan Keyes came to IL for ninety days and got 28%.

    Now, lifelong Illinoisan Crazy Aunt Judy Topinka is polling at 29%.



  24. - Way Northsider - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 12:47 pm:

    The more one knows about Peraica, the less one likes him. Stroger is the lesser of two evils.

  25. - Polls are voodoo - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 12:53 pm:

    Looks like Dewey is gonna stomp Truman for sure, yep.

    I don’t believe any poll that uses such tiny samples as most of these do. Too easy to get the result you want instead of the truth.

  26. - Southern Illinoisian - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 12:54 pm:


    Very creative, slamming a generalization with another generalization. Of course the “have-nots” outnumber the “haves”, although, due to the Bush economy (since the MSM gives no credit), the ratio of “haves” is increasing.

    Regardless, my point regarding phone polls is still valid.

    I suppose YOU answer pollsters that call from unidentified toll-free numbers at dinner time. Now THERE’s a minority position.

    Also, if you think of a generalization that supports the opposing viewpoint that Democrat voters are under-represented in phone polls, then share it. I’d love to dissect that logic.

    Most affluent, intelligent, people recognize that there is only one poll that matters, and that’s next Tuesday. All the others are wishful thinking.

  27. - Tessa - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 1:39 pm:

    God, how I hate polls. In the end, these numbers won’t mean a darned thing. The only ones that will matter are the ones next Tuesday night after the polling places across the state close and they count the votes. I just hope more than 25% of the eligible people in this state vote.

  28. - Sango Dem - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 1:47 pm:

    Southern Illinoisan, the affluent are not the only ones likely to be skipped by phone polls. An increasing number of young people only use cell phones, which are unlikely to be polled, and the young do vote more Democratic. Also, a significant number of the working poor either don’t have a home phone or have their phone temporarily disconnected at any given time, which means they won’t be called. As someone who has done targeted calling to low income households, I can tell you that they are harder to reach than the wealthy.

  29. - Bubs - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 2:44 pm:

    The Peraica campaign is noting that in the Tribune poll, of the 484 Cook County voters the pollster says he polled, only 46 were Republicans, less than 10%, and far less than the actual demographic countywide. By contrast, 276 of those 484 voters were Democrats - 57 percent.

    I don’t claim to know anything like enough about polling to say things definitively, but if that’s true the Trib poll does look pretty bogus as to Peraica-Stroger.

    Of course, people seeing the headline won’t know it.

  30. - doubtful - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:26 pm:

    “Very creative, slamming a generalization with another generalization.” -Southern Illinoisian

    Actually, my whole point was anyone could fabricate generalizations to prove their point. I was just riffing hypotheticals contrary to your original assumption, with, I might add, the exact same amount of factual, supporting evidence as you gave.

    “I suppose YOU answer pollsters that call from unidentified toll-free numbers at dinner time. Now THERE’s a minority position.” -Southern Illinoisian

    I have answered polls, what’s your point?

    “Also, if you think of a generalization that supports the opposing viewpoint that Democrat voters are under-represented in phone polls, then share it. I’d love to dissect that logic.” -Southern Illinoisian

    Um, I wasn’t suggesting “Democrat” (actually it’s Democratic) voters were under represented. I was suggesting that you gave no evidence to support your claims that affluence equates to conservative tendencies and an aversion to answering polls. It was just a self-serving assumption.

    You also don’t really say how much they are under reported. What percentage of the population is “affluent?” If it’s a small percentage, like 1% - 3%, then how much does under reporting them really affect the outcome of the poll? Isn’t that what the MOE is accounting for?

    “Most affluent, intelligent, people recognize that there is only one poll that matters, and that’s next Tuesday. All the others are wishful thinking.” -Southern Illinoisian

    Everyone knows that’s the only poll that counts. It’s Republicans who are engaged in wishful thinking, though, if they don’t lend credence to the overwhelming amount of polls that show they are no longer in the good graces of the American people.

  31. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:48 pm:

    “Southern Illinoisan,” if you want to criticize individual polls, be my guest. But, please, polling is a long established science. It’s not 100 percent acccurate and practitioners don’t claim it to be.

    There have always been doubters. Pollsters once walked door to door. That’s where the phrase “in the field” comes from. When some pollsters started using telephones, the old timers went ballistic. Phone polling couldn’t be accurate, they bellowed. But it mostly was. And a lot cheaper and more timely than door-to-door polls.

    I’m tired of these stupid arguments about whether all polls are worthless. Move on or move out, please. We all have better things to do than educate you or read your education. The world is round and polling is mostly accurate when done properly.

  32. - Southern Illinoisian - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:49 pm:

    Sango Dem,

    With all due respect, if you’re doing “targeted calling to low-income households”, how the heck do you know anything about calling affluent households?

    While affluent households certainly all HAVE phones, they also have the means to identify and REJECT calls. And, most are busy enough (that’s how they get affluent in the first place) that they choose to ignore nuisance calls, which include phone polls.

    And, almost all lower-income households DO HAVE phones. I’d also challenge the number of “lower-income” households, given that the median income for a family of four in Illinois is now over $72,000/year.

    Lastly, you are correct that young people tend to vote Democrat. That’s because they haven’t gained the wisdom that comes with age. Also, they tend to talk loudly, but sleep in on election day.

  33. - Southern Illinoisian - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:53 pm:

    Rich, I’m sorry, but you opened the thread for debate. I’m trying to be civil, but voice my opinion. I know you don’t share it.

  34. - Bubs - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:57 pm:

    Why this argument? It’s down to six days. I personally think the Trib poll is defective, for the reasons I noted above (poor sampling), but all the cards will be turned over soon enough.

    I’m more concerned about the outright lying in TV attack ads, on both sides. Welcome to Illinois!

  35. - Rich Miller - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:57 pm:

    SI, your opinion is not based on any actual FACTS. Again, move on or move out. I have to tell you this every few months and I won’t do it again. Go start a blog for people who think pollsters are voodoo priests.

  36. - Bubs - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 3:59 pm:

    P.S. When I say “both sides,” I meant Republicans and Democrats in general. It appears to me that Stroger is the only one lying in his race.

  37. - Angie - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 5:19 pm:

    Not to try to continue the poll argument, but doesn’t it sort of depend on what type of poll is conducted? There are scientific polls and then very badly structured ones.

    The scientific ones are more accurate precisely because they are scientific. There are lots of bogus types of polls, though.

    I’m taking a pol-sci class, and the use of “push polls” was a topic that came up. Our instructor disliked them so much that when the types of polls were listed on the Powerpoint slide, that one was spelled completely backwards on purpose, just because it is a backwards and unscientific way to do a poll.

    So, if anyone has heard of baloney polls, they are probably wary of all polls, not realizing that some are better conducted than others.

    For a fun thread topic, though, Rich should run a contest to see what types of obnoxious questions could be used in push polls for our Illinois candidates. I’ll bet they’d sound identical with both mainstream candidates. Something like, “Did you realize that (insert any candidate here) received contributions from (insert name of every individual who currently has a letter of the alphabet attached to them in the unsealed indictments that just came down)?

  38. - Casey Jones - Tuesday, Oct 31, 06 @ 6:59 pm:

    According to the Tribune poll, thirty-two percent of voters thought Blagojevich would do a better job of cleaning up government corruption, compared to 27 percent for Topinka. Huh? The man who brought us federal investigations for “endemic hiring fraud”, “pay-for-play on steroids” and $1500 birthtism checks from the husbands of job seekers is viewed by nearly 1/3 of those polled as being best able to clean up government corruption?!?!? Can he recognize it? Certainly. But clean it up? The only way he’s going to manage that is to be indicted along with his whole inner circle…

    I honestly don’t know whether to lose faith in polls or the voters of Illinois.

  39. - T.J. - Wednesday, Nov 1, 06 @ 4:42 am:

    Keyes got 28%.

    Keyes polled nowhere near 28% until Election Day.

  40. - Scott Fawell's Cellmate - Wednesday, Nov 1, 06 @ 2:49 pm:

    T.J. at 4:42 a.m.

    Keyes got 28% of the vote, Topinka is polling at 29%. No one is saying Keyes polled at anything, just making the point Topinka is swirling down the drain toward Illinois-tourist Alan Keyes numbers.

  41. - Agapios - Thursday, May 17, 07 @ 4:33 pm:


Sorry, comments for this post are now closed.

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