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Willard Romney: [voice over] As far back as I can remember, I always wanted to be a president.

The Republican Convention: On the Good Ship Lollipop


The Campaign Bus

Welcome to America


What a country


The Temple of Doom


One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

Sunset Boulevard


Gone with Rafalca (and Seamus)


Little Willard

The horror! The horror!

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Willard Romney: [voice over] As far back as I can remember, I always wanted to be a president.

(Cut to Republican Convention): "I'm king of the world!"

On the Campaign Bus (voices a la Robert Altman):

"What a dump."

"Toto, I've got a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore."

"Human sacrifice! Dogs and cats living together! Mass hysteria!"

"Hiss...panics. Why'd it have to be Hispanics?"


Images courtesy Wikimedia Commons

Along the Campaign Trail:

Willard: Hello. I'm Willard. Willard Gump.
American Voter: Nobody gives a horse's shit who you are, fuzzballl! You're not even a low-life, scum-sucking maggot! Get your maggoty ass on the bus! You're in the army now!
Election Night Jump-cuts:
TV Anchor: "Fasten your seatbelts. It's going to be a bumpy night."
Romney HQ:  "Who's on first?"
Fox News: :"Houston, we have a problem."
Megyn Kelly to Karl Rove:"You can't handle the truth!"
                            "Are you crying? There's no crying! There's no crying in baseball!"

Viewer 1 (after midnight): "You're still here? It's over! Go home. Go!"

Earth to Romney: "Hasta la vista, baby."

Willard: Last Take
"You don't understand! I coulda had class. I coulda been a contender. I coulda been somebody, instead of a bum, which is what I am."

"Mother of mercy, is this the end of Rico?"

"The horror. The horror..."

"Rosebud."

Ann: "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn".
"Captain's Log, Star Date 110712.0106. This is the final cruise of the Starship Enterprise under my command. This ship, and her history, will shortly become the care of another crew. To them, and their posterity will we commit our future.
Our Future:

Image courtesy www.barackobama.com

(Dissolve to President Obama): "They call me Mister Tibbs!"

Discuss

In my last three posts, we shook out three different pollsters' dirty linen, shining a light on the bedbugs under their sheets. How did the final results compare with their predictions and our corrections?


Pretty good, huh? The intent here is not to break my arm trying to pat myself on the back. My effort has been to perform a service, elucidate and perhaps educate, by deconstructing anomalous polls and showing up some of the bad pollsters. Of the three above, Susquehanna and UMass fall suspiciously into the "paid for" category (the polls being published in the right-wing Pittsburgh Trib and Boston Herald respectively); YouGov has just been highly variable all campaign season, probably because of their apparent lack of control over their Internet sampling. For a fuller list of polling hacks, see today's Kos front page "2012 Polling Hall of Shame".

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This one's for the home team and the night owls who won't be able to sleep a wink through tomorrow night anyway. GO ELIZABETH.

Yesterday, the Boston Herald released a last minute poll conducted for UMass-Lowell by an independent contractor, showing the Massachusetts Senate race in favor of Scott Brown 49-48. Now this was not actually good news for our truck drivin' man, because the same poll had him up by 49-45 six weeks ago i.e. Brown had stalled as Elizabeth was zooming past him. In any case, the alarm went up around here: "Outlier! Outlier!" (this being the Herald, I'm not sure they weren't shouting "OUT AND OUT LIAR"), so we went to work.

Whenever we see an "outlier" poll (and these two run against the grain of other recent MA polls), we try to get behind the headlines to look at the underlying questionnaire and, more importantly, the demographics of the respondents. These are not always easy to get to (see Note 1 below), but in this case, they were available (link provided in the text above). We then check the demographics against two gold standards: (a) the 2008 CNN Exit Polls (b) the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau data. If there are significant discrepancies between the poll demographics and the standards, we use various methods to adjust and "normalize" the results for a more accurate projection.
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A November 3 poll  for Colorado released by YouGov showed the Colorado presidential race to be in favor of Obama 48-47. So what's to kvetch about?

Well, some folks were dismayed because this apparently represents a 2% improvement for Romney since YouGov's October 11 poll. On the other side, as in the case of Pennsylvania (see yesterday's diary) this kept the fuse sputtering under Karl Rove's ample bum, filling the CO airwaves with their foulest emanations, and the R&R boys scurrying around Colorado like Energizer rats. Once again, good. Waste of Republican energy, $$ and focus. For, while marginally better than the Susquehanna garbage lowlighted yesterday, the YouGov polls are also trash.

As I wrote then, in order to examine a poll, we try to get behind the headlines to look at the underlying questionnaire and, more importantly, the demographics of the respondents. These are not always easy to get to (see Note 1 below), but, in this case they were, to YouGov's credit (links provided earlier in the text). We then check the demographics against two gold standards: (a) the 2008 CNN Exit Polls (b) the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau data. If there are significant discrepancies between the poll demographics and the standards, we use various methods to adjust and "normalize" the results for a more accurate projection.
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Yesterday, the Tribune Review of Pittsburgh released a poll conducted by Susquehanna Polling showing the Pennsylvania presidential race tied at 47-47. This apparently lit a fuse under Karl Rove's ample bum, flooding the PA airwaves with the foulest emanations, and has the R&R boys scurrying around the state like Energizer rats in a maze. Good. Waste of energy, $$ and focus. (Plus, either they missed the October 18 poll by the same outfit which had Romney ahead by 4 points - thus proving Obama has some real momentum here -- or they are really, really desperate now.) In any case, both Susquehanna polls are demographic garbage.  

Whenever we see an "outlier" poll (and these two run way against the grain of other PA polls), we try to get behind the headlines to look at the underlying questionnaire and, more importantly, the demographics of the respondents. These are not always easy to get to (see Note 1 below), but in this case, they were available. We then check the demographics against two gold standards: (a) the 2008 CNN Exit Polls (b) the 2010 U.S. Census Bureau data. If there are significant discrepancies between the poll demographics and the standards, we use various methods to adjust and "normalize" the results for a more accurate projection.
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Fri Nov 02, 2012 at 10:27 AM PDT

Running the Numbers: The Jobs Report

by Gautam

The Recovery Continues

4.7 million private sector jobs have been added in the 37 months since the start of Fiscal Year 2009 (the first Obama budget and, incidentally, the end of the Bush Jr. recession) through today's employment report. Compare that to the 3 million jobs LOST during the eight Bush Jr. budget years. And that's what the R&R boys would have us going back to?


Source:Bureau of Labor Statistics; Current Employment Statistics Historical Data Table B-1

Bonus Material

By way of comparison, private sector job growth in the three administrations prior to Dubbya:
Clinton: 18 million; Bush Sr.: 1.8 million; Reagan: 15 million.

Looked at another way:

20 years of Reagan/Bush/Bush produced 13.8 million jobs or 690,000 per year.
11 years and counting of Clinton/Obama have added 22.7 million jobs or 2.1 million per year. So which economic policies would the R&R boys have us follow?
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