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Sometimes, you just have to admit it. I really didn't find a whole lot to like about our the polling data we got back from PPP this week. In addition to our usual array of questions about Barack Obama, Mitt Romney and so forth, we threw in a mix of topical questions, as we always do. The results: bleh.

Public Policy Polling for Daily Kos & SEIU. 6/14-17. Registered voters. MoE ±3.1% (no trendlines):

Q: Who do you trust more on health care issues that are important to you and your family, Barack Obama or Mitt Romney?

Barack Obama: 44
Mitt Romney: 45
Both equally: 4
Not sure: 7

Gah, really? Well, fortunately, we did this one as a split sample, asking the above version to half of our respondents, and the below version to the other half:
Q: Who do you trust more on health care issues that are important to you and your family, Barack Obama or Congressional Republicans?

Barack Obama: 47
Congressional Republicans: 43
Both equally: 5
Not sure: 5

That's ... well, that's not really a whole lot better. I would love to meet those "both equally" folks, though. Actually, no, I wouldn't.
Q: In general, do you think Barack Obama or Mitt Romney has more clear stances on the issues?

Barack Obama: 45
Mitt Romney: 42
Both equally: 6
Not sure: 7

Sigh. What happens, I think, on questions like these is that they become "partisan-ized," especially in our tightly divided electorate. Democrats know they're supposed to side with Obama, Republicans know they're supposed to side with Romney, and independents more or less split. (They actually preferred Romney over Obama on the health care question, but Obama over congressional Republicans.)
Q: Do you think Barack Obama or Mitt Romney has a more clear stance specifically on the issue of immigration?

Barack Obama: 44
Mitt Romney: 38
Both equally: 9
Not sure: 9

I think you can really see that "partisan-izing" effect here. Mitt Romney has done everything possible to avoid taking a stance on immigration issues and yet he barely trails the president. This may also have something to do with the fact that Romney's immigration dodges haven't become a major campaign issue yet (though of course they've been discussed here a-plenty.) That may yet change.

So, one more, and the best example of partisanship rearing its head yet:

Q: Do you think the Supreme Court is too conservative, too liberal, or about right?

Too conservative: 31
Too liberal: 32
About right: 30
Not sure: 7

That's just kind of depressing. (And the splits in the crosstabs are exactly what you'd expect them to be.) We do plan to ask this question again this week, though, to see if the Supreme Court's ruling on the Affordable Care Act (aka the health care reform bill) changes perceptions.

So, we don't always like what our polling shows us. In fact, I'd say that's as often the case as it is not. But you can pay for only what you want to hear, or you can pay to hear the truth. And we will always, always opt for the latter. That's what being a member of the reality-based community means.

P.S. As always, our approval and favorability numbers can be found on our weekly trends page.

Originally posted to Daily Kos Elections on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 03:17 PM PDT.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  I am kind of surprised (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mr MadAsHell

    I did not expect the numbers to be that close on Obama-Romney

  •  I don't usually worry about Party ID, (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    sebastianguy99, Darmok

    but it does concern me that the gap between Ds and Rs is so low, given that the toplines in this poll are highly consistent with other recent national polling.

    However, I do find some things to remain happy about. First, the President is still ahead. that counts for something. Second, he remains at 40% with white voters, which is about where he usually is, give or take. Assuming that the composition of the electorate is less white than in 2008 (probably a good assumption), 40% of the white vote should be just enough. Though more would be better.

    Ok, so I read the polls.

    by andgarden on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 03:25:21 PM PDT

  •  Sometimes the demos and crosstabs favor Obama, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    sometimes not.  Those are some of the lowest favorables in a while.  I'd say we'll see what next week brings, but next week will have the ACA fallout.

    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity." --M. L. King "You can't fix stupid" --Ron White -6.00, -5.18

    by zenbassoon on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 03:25:47 PM PDT

    •  We elect Presidents in an Electoral College, (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      mmacdDE, zenbassoon

      not a National Poll.  Relax, the Obama team knows many ways to 271 and realizes Rmoney doesn't have a single realistic one.

      Let's talk more about PA, OH, WI, IA, VA, NC and FL after Labor Day.  They're the only ones that count, and even now, BHO is winning nearly all of them.  Do you really care if Rmony wins TX by 40 points?  I don't, but it does impact National Polls, which are irrelevant.

      Don't worry, be happy.  Throw some bucks at Orange to Blue candidates and you'll feel much better.

      "Never let up. Crush bigotry and greed."

      by LouisMartin on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 05:01:41 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  53-47 male (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    itskevin, jj32, Mayfly

    This poll is having crosstab and sample issues on a weekly basis. Though I trust the topline.

    "What do you mean "conspiracy"? Does that mean it's someone's imaginings and that the actual polls hovered right around the result?" - petral

    by conspiracy on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 03:30:22 PM PDT

  •  Why did you leave these out? (4+ / 0-)

    Q: Do you think Barack Obama or Mitt Romney is a bigger dick?

        Barack Obama: 12
        Mitt Romney: 78
        Both equally: 5
        Not sure: 5

    Q: Do you think that Mitt Romney is capable of telling the truth, ever?

        Yes: 1
        No: 99
        Not sure: 0

  •  sad results (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Mr MadAsHell

    Peace and low stress ..

    by mdmc on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 04:02:12 PM PDT

  •  Thanks for asking that final question (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I knew the answer would be nauseating

  •  The polling tends to support the view (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    that the electorate is remarkably dimwitted.

    The universe may have a meaning and a purpose, but it may just specifically not include you.

    by Anne Elk on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 04:03:36 PM PDT

  •  A dollop of cottage cheese on the dog's breakfast (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    ...improves the results by at least 15% at our house.

    Right, Gracie?

    "So, am I right or what?"

    by itzik shpitzik on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 04:04:42 PM PDT

  •  The only people I trust (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    with health care issues are my medical professionals, not a bunch of no medical knowledge politicians.

  •  I'd like to see fav/unfav for willard here-- (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    because I think it's sort of remarkable that Obama is 44/51 approve and still leads by 3.   To me, many of these underline numbers appear off in this poll (most obviously 53/47 male), but if O. could actually lead with 44% approval, he'd be hard to beat.

  •  The thing about polls... (0+ / 0-)

    If you asked the "average American":
    Who is smarter?
    A. Carl Sagan
    B. Albert Einstein
    C. Sigmund Freud
    D. Me

    Most would never stop to realize A-C are all dead so would answer D out of pure stupidity, not because they're dead.

  •  what is depressing are those people (8+ / 0-)

    who truly are against the health care bill simply because it was put out by Obama. I have a racist relative who is 100% against Obama care. THis is the same person who almost lost their home due to medical bills due to one being uninsured and with chronic illness.

    That is what is depressing. The amount of hate is so strong towards Obama it is even easier than usual to vote against their own best interest.

    Where ignorance is our master, there is no possibility of real peace. - Dalai Lama

    by kimoconnor on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 04:12:27 PM PDT

  •  Holy crap! (6+ / 0-)

    32% of respondents to this poll think the Supreme court is to liberal?


    Chicago--Proud Home of the 1908 World Series Champion Chicago Cubs

    by Jeff Y on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 04:15:08 PM PDT

    •  The R-W has been pushing "liberal Supreme Court" (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Jeff Y

      since the early 1950s.  By now the term has been said, heard, read so long and so often that present-day reality doesn't matter to anyone except those who are paying attention.

      "'s difficult to imagine what else Republicans can do to drive women away in 2012, unless they decide to bring back witch-hanging. And I wouldn't put it past them." James Wolcott

      by Mayfly on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 04:36:55 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  I think was bothers me the most (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    skyounkin, niemann, Herodotus Prime

    is that, no matter how bad it gets, the public is always ripe for bamboozlement and the reason for that is that Movement Conservatism is free to do it all again. Because they are not now, nor have then been force to in the past, go about bearing the burden of all of their undeniably being responsible for the messes we face. Movement Conservatism is not discredited, not at all, even though it should be.

    It should be embarassing to identify yourself as a wingnut right now, on performance and outcomes alone.

    In the past, it was hard to believe that conservative itself wasn't being relentlessly attacked by name by non-Movement Conservatives.

    Now, it's unconscionable not to go after conservatism itself as a failed ideology. The people are not using common sense alone and coming to the conclusion that the Right is responsible for our national nightmares.

    Since Citizen's United is about to let the GOP drown the nation in lies, and we have no billionaire backbench to counter them dollar for dollar (which is the Citizen's United enablers in robes argument to how non-Movement Conservatives are not impeded in any way by the decision, just spend your own hundreds of millions in kind) this is pretty sobering.

    Movement Conservatism has simply not been discredited in the eyes of millions of Americans, despite it's massive, and recently so, utterly nation-shaking epic failures.

    There is simply no reason, and no excuse, for anyone with a (D) after his name not to be unrelentingly attacking Conservatism itself as a tried and failed danger to the US.

    There is no bipartisan, civil, and low-toned answer to the reality that Movement Conservatism is winning while the status-quo to checking it and rolling it back has failed to put a dent in it. Despite their being wrong on so many fronts and in so many ways, the Movement Conservative cancer keeps spreading and doing more harm.

    I am from the Elizabeth Warren wing of the Democratic Party

    by LeftHandedMan on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 04:17:41 PM PDT

    •  The language of the right has not yet been defeate (0+ / 0-)

      "He's too liberal".
      "He is Socialist".

      All language to defeat even someone who in the UK would be to the right of Cameron.

      Ever hear "he is too Conservative"?

      Fascist and Nazi are as laughable a slur as socialist to those of us who are left of centre. It is not effective though because we know it is stupid. The right knows communist is stupid but they do not care. So where do we go? How do we describe the idiotic positions of Palin and the Tea Party in a single, scary word?

    •  This is one thing that has angered me above ... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, PorridgeGun

      ... almost more than anything the Obama administration and Democratic leaders in Congress have done:

      Four years ago the Republican party was in tatters, with its approval numbers and credibility at perhaps an all-time low.  

      Instead of taking advantage of that fact, many Democratic leaders went all "bipartisan" -- treating Republicans as valid equal partners who have "good ideas too" ... thus rehabilitating them with a new glow of credibility and validity.  

      And the newly strengthened Republicans have in return -- as all us hippies here predicted -- used their new strength to stab Democrats in the back over and over again.

    •  This is the Dems' fault. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, PorridgeGun

      I find their lack of spine infuriating. Well, here's a poll to show what happens when you relentlessly retreat on all core Democratic beliefs.

      How many divisions does OWS have?

      by Diebold Hacker on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 06:16:51 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  There's An Easy Fix For This (0+ / 0-)
    Sometimes, you just have to admit it. I really didn't find a whole lot to like about our the polling data we got back from PPP this week.
    Just do what Bloomberg did - shift your sample's demographics away from White people. Your poll was 74% White, while Bloomberg's was 67% White. The fewer White people a poll includes the less it will tilt RepubliKlan.

    Cause let's be honest. Who else but White people would vote RepubliKlan?

    One thing is for sure, Obama's gonna lose the White vote in 2012 by far more than the 11 million he lost it by in 2008. Because when it comes to voting against one's best interests, White-Americans are unsurpassed.

    I am not now, nor have I ever been, a member of the Republican Party.

    by OnlyWords on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 04:19:48 PM PDT

  •  The crosstabs seem strangely weighted, (0+ / 0-)

    Don't they?

    Could this be an outlier bc of that?

    I know you believe you understood what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant. -- S.I. Hayakawa

    by tapu dali on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 04:20:31 PM PDT

  •  Why Not "Neither One"? (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    That more accurately reflects my response.

  •  i remember during the cold war, the russians (0+ / 0-)

    were always trying to jam the voa broadcast signal & the west was always complaining that the message of democracy & freedom wasn't getting thru to people behind the iron curtain.

    you can blame the poll results on the fuxnewz propaganda factory or the d's dismal messaging strategy (if you can call it that) but the fact is, the d's signal isn't getting thru to the electorate.

    we need to face it -- either pick up the game or we're done.

  •  Jesus (0+ / 0-)
    Q: Do you think the Supreme Court is too conservative, too liberal, or about right?
    Too conservative: 31
    Too liberal: 32
    About right: 30
    Not sure: 7
    Nobody will ever be able to convince me that base right-wingers are not easily brainwashed idiots. Just stupid, stupid people. "Sack-of-hammers" dumb.
  •  Sometimes I wonder if another Depression (0+ / 0-)

    is what we need to prove to these idiots that the Republicans don't know jack.

    I mean, if they get power in 2012, by 2014 it will happen.

    The lack of plans that they have proves it.

    The Ryan Plan? Hell, that will put us there really fast.

    •  actually, the economy will probably continue (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LordMike, PorridgeGun improve and Romney will get all the credit.

      Romney gets reelected with huge Republican majorities in Congress.

      THEN, their policies really sink in by 2018, then Depression, then Democrats get elected in 2020 and lose because the economy didn't magically improve in a couple years. Democrats get blamed.

      lather, rinse, repeat.

      "An inglorious peace is better than a dishonorable war." -Mark Twain

      by humanistique on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 05:08:33 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  Actually, I do think it will happen sooner (0+ / 0-)

        if the Republicans win. I would say 2014 or 2015.

        What Romney and the Republicans want to do is what Reagan did in 1981. By 1982, we were at 10.8 percent unemployment.

        This time, it will be worse.

  •  so DailyKos does polling? (0+ / 0-)

    exactly how are you making a random sample (of registered voters)?  how are you attempting to contact them?  and what do you do if a particular randomly selected individual isn't contacted or refuses to be polled?  for instance, do you note the age of those that you can't contact?  where is this data?

    •  DK (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      cloudbustingkid, jncca, David Nir

      has been doing polling for a long time. It's now through PPP, which has a great track record and is one of the pioneers in automated polling.

      The data is at the link at the top of the diary. Or here:

      For methodology questions, check:

    •  Daily Kos has done polling for quite some time. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      You're just now figuring this out?

      •  yes. (0+ / 0-) what?

        under the "methodology questions" link it doesn't say how "Aristotle Inc" assures its samples are random (for instance, are they random over the entire nation?  or just within voting districts for which you have the data?  certainly no mention is made of restricting phone calls to what are presumed to be landlines), nor what the data is on failure rates; for instance, what is done for "random deletion process to achieve an appropriate gender and race balance" if there are no more left of some age bracket to delete?  how is "an appropriate gender and race balance" determined?  and it would certainly be helpful in the original article to point out that most of your results are within your span of error, so that you actually know nothing.  are partial responses pooled?

        pretty boring stuff, i know.  but it's very difficult to do a decent job of polling and extremely easy to fool yourself that you're doing an ok job.

  •  The healthcare question surprsied me...but after I (0+ / 0-)

    thought about it- not so much- there has been nothing but negative messaging on the issue since it came out, and on top of that there is of course- the mandate.

    Constitutional or not- people do not like it.

    "I'm not scared of anyone or anything, Angie. Isn't that the way life should be?" Jack Hawksmoor

    by skyounkin on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 04:37:25 PM PDT

  •  Almost looks as if (0+ / 0-)

    those polled had to choose between two guys they don't trust. They didn't call me so I'm suspicious of this poll anyways.

  •  My team, right or wrong (0+ / 0-)

    Republicans have always been able to count on a reliably frightened base that will always be opposed to the Democrats.  Replace Romney with a potted plant - not sure if anyone could tell the difference anyway - and the results would be identical.

  •  Walk into any public facility, airports, bus (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LordMike, bluezen

    stations, doctors and dentists offices, and of course bars and restaurants, hell even in VA hospitals, and what will you find?  Flat screen TVs with FOX News on them!!!

    You think this doesn't have an effect?  And it's been going on for fucking years!  Democracy is losing in this country and there's no way to save it.  What we need is a serious discussion about devolution and regionalization.  An Article V Constitutional Convention to determine the process of separation.

    I was visiting my brother over Memorial Day in Nashville.  My brother and his friends were equally split between right wing GOPers and Ron Paulists.  And we couldn't agree about a single thing, except that we all felt that we would be much better off with a peaceful process of secession.  
    everyone agreed it would be a win/win.

    "Never let up. Crush bigotry and greed."

    by LouisMartin on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 04:50:30 PM PDT

  •  Ezra Klein has a brilliant answer to these polls, (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    ... in the current issue of New Yorker magazine. In a nutshell, if you put party affiliation into an opinion question, no matter the substance of the question, you swing the results.

    With our filters and the propensity for knee-jerk reactions to code phrases (which Republican word-mongers know and practice SO much better than we do), we suspend logic and reasoning, experience and judgment, and we respond to the labels that are part of the question. This proves to be so even when the label and the substance are in conflict, are opposites, or counter-intuitive.

    The power of suggestion is VERY powerful It reaches the subconscious of the most well-meaning of us. It's Psychology 101.

    So polls like the diarist describes should come as no surprise.

    And not to put too fine a point on it, but today's news stories to the effect that if you attach "Obamacare" to health care, that's all some respondents need to know to oppose things they've previously said they approve of! Duh!

    Obama and strong Democratic majorities in 2012!

    by TRPChicago on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 04:52:24 PM PDT

  •  What! No attempt to explain it all away? (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LordMike, PorridgeGun

    Like "Hey, it's Raz ... Gallup is a joke now ... yeah well Electoral College! ... The only poll that counts is ..."

    You know ... the classic graveyard whistles.  

    Good thing Romney's such a joke, eh?  Guess we have to 'work harder' now.  Maybe we can convince 100 million people or so to get their heads out of their asses.  

    This country is ROCKETING to hell.  We might dodge the proverbial bullet in November; I certainly hope so.  But my God.  

    And oh boy -- tomorrow our attempt at joining the civilized world gets shot down by justices who liken health care to forced-broccoli-consumption!

    •  Well, half the population has an IQ of 100 or less (0+ / 0-)

      That means that a significant percentage of the half is dumber than a stump, and that scares hell out of me.  Civilization may be doomed because we aren't intelligent enough to make the decisions needed to survive.  A hundred years ago the lack of intelligence made little difference, but as the population increased the number of chronically stupid increased, and some number of stupid people must be a tipping point to chaos.  I find it incredibly depressing, so I intend to have another beer................

  •  The last question... (0+ / 0-)

    result doesn't surprise me at all...I've no doubt that three in ten Americans would find any SCOTUS short of all 9 seats held by right wing justices as "too liberal".

    "It's almost as if we're watching Mitt Romney on Safari in his own country." -- Jonathan Capeheart

    by JackND on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 05:46:12 PM PDT

  •  My take away is Repubs are winning (0+ / 0-)

    in generalization and the mantra that 'both parties are the same.'  

    I think the real trick here is to find a question (or phrasing) that will amplify the differences enough and/or be specific regarding a subject  to have a strong majority on our side.  

    This is what Lutz does.

    ... the watchword of true patriotism: "Our country - when right to be kept right; when wrong to be put right." - Carl Schurz; Oct. 17, 1899

    by NevDem on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 06:03:21 PM PDT

  •  I thought Aquarius was dawning? (0+ / 0-)

    Whatever happened to our "New Age" of enlightenment that many of us hoped was happening? It seems like something very wrong is and was happening in our so-called society because things sure have not gotten all that much better in thirty plus years.

    I am a fan of Orwell and the " X Files" but I am not a paranoid kook.  I'm more like a societal objective lay scientist on human behavior.  Although over the years, I have seen a lot, I have absolutely no idea why people do or believe the things they do.

    I have also seen the evil proganda at every level, from birth even, put upon us through the messages from our corporate and political manipulators so that we accept our habits and beliefs to be true in nature.

    The messages are found in every media since forever. Didn't Marshall McLuen say that the medium is the message? Our medium is diverse in technologies. WE as people, from little one up to whatever age you are, are bombarded with the work of some screen writer to guide our behavior and imagination to their profit.  Churches do that too. So do corporations, large and small.

    It appears that they chose the wrong pill.  Bodes badly for us others who chose to kind of wake up.  Just sayin'

  •  That's realy depressing. (0+ / 0-)

    48forEastAfrica - Donate to Oxfam> "It is better to light a candle than to curse the darkness." Edna St.V. Millay

    by slouching on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 06:54:41 PM PDT

  •  Takeaway? America is 100% fucked (0+ / 0-)

    Never seen anything like it in my 56 years on this planet. Genuinely disturbing and beyond tragic.

    "Do you realize that fluoridation is the most monstrously conceived and dangerous Communist plot we have ever had to face?" - General Jack D. Ripper

    by wilder5121 on Wed Jun 27, 2012 at 11:16:44 PM PDT

  •  Just one more piece of evidence... (0+ / 0-)

    ...not that any was needed...that demonstrates the level of ignorance in this country.  

    Everyone knows that the 7 Supreme Court Justices have no political leanings whatsoever.

    And it's slanderous to suggest that Congressional Republicans don't support good health care.  It's a known fact that all of them take the insurance package offered to members of Congress.  It's true.  You can look it up.

    As for immigration, of course someone born in Kenya and brought to Hawaii as a small child would be more supportive.  What does that prove?

    And just what is this supposed to mean?

    Q: In general, do you think Barack Obama or Mitt Romney has more clear stances on the issues?
    Issues?  What issues?  Campaigns are supposed to be about TV ads and debates and kissing babies.  What so issues have to do with anything, I ask you?  Dumb question.

    My head is starting to pound with all of this thinking.  I have to go lie down.

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