Friday, September 25, 2009

About that New CBS News/NY Times Poll

As all other polls show the president hovering around 50% approval, with little improvement regarding his handling of health care along comes a new poll from CBS News and the NY Times suggesting that the president has a 56% approval rating. It also suggests that he now has a plurality 47% to 45% supporting his handling of health care reform...

So what's the problem? Look to the last page of the poll release and you see that the original sample was 28% Republican, 34% Democrat, and 38% Independent - no too far off from recent surveys of party ID. But then the polling firm weighted the sample such that it was 22% Republican, 37% Democrat, and 41% Independent - from a6% Democrat advantage to a 15% advantage.

What effect did that have? If the pollsters had relied on the original sample (no weighting) the president's approval rating would be 53% and his approval/disapproval on health care would be 44%/48%. That would mean that he gained no ground on health care after his media blitz and that his approval rating fell since August. I guess that neither CBS nor the New York Times felt like reporting that story...

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