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View Diary: CNN calls a five-point lead for Barack Obama in swing states a 'tie' (157 comments)

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  •  What is the confidence interval here ... (0+ / 0-)

    I presume that margin of error refers to precision.  

    Let's take this case:

    President Obama had 49% of the vote, and the poll claimed a confidence interval of 90% with a precision of +/- 3%.  Let's give Romney 43%.

    I would read that as a 90% chance that the support for Obama in the enitire population was between 46 and 52%.  There is a 5% chance that Obama is above 52%, and a 5% chance that he is below 46%.

    There is also a 90% chance that Romney is between 40 and 46%.

    I would say, based on this hypothetical poll, that Obama has a 95% chance of winning the state.  Hardly a tie.

    Am I reading this right?

    No one could make a greater mistake than he who did nothing because he could do only a little. - Edmund Burke

    by AdirondackForeverWild on Fri Sep 14, 2012 at 01:44:07 PM PDT

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