I have decided to part ways with our current pollster, and will be looking for a new polling partner to finish out this election cycle. The decision was made, in part, on the results of Nate Silver's new pollster rankings.
Research 2000's past results aren't actually as bad as people will try and make them out to be. In fact, if there's one thing that's striking about the chart, is how closely clumped together those pollsters actually are. The difference in accuracy between the best and worst pollsters (omitting Zogby's genuinely crappy internet poll) isn't very big. As Nate told me via email as he walked me through the results:
The absolute difference in the pollster ratings is not very great. Most of the time, there is no difference at all.
And while many will focus on R2K's misses in Alabama and Arkansas, fact is they nailed several others, like the Hawaii special, the Nevada primaries, NY-23, etc. Every pollster has hits and misses, and R2K was no different. But in an industry measured in percentages, fact is they underperformed their peers.
I believe in accountability, in accuracy, and in making sure we provide the absolute best information not just to this wonderful community, but also to the outside world. As such, Daily Kos will be on polling hiatus the next several months as we evaluate our options and decide how to best proceed.