Mitt Romney’s Polling: The Dumbest Story Ever Told

As I’ve already said repeatedly, I’m still stunned that anybody bought this nonsense about "skewed polls" throughout the presidential campaign.
Actually, I should rephrase that. There’s was about five weeks from the conventions through the first debate that there was no escaping insanely silly talk about public polling being "skewed towards Democrats."  Then, from the first debate, you stopped hearing about it, mostly because Mitt Romney was leading in exactly two polls, Gallup and Rasmussen.
That should’ve told you that the theory was utter horseshit.
Oh, there were any number of other reasons it was horseshit. Specifically, it would destroy any credibility that the polling organizations had and constitute a fraud on the clients who commissioned the fraud. Also, it’s almost impossible to imagine and industry-wide conspiracy that used more of less the same numbers. The "skewers" theory made about as much practical sense as the 9/11 Truther movement does.
Look, I’m not shocked that bloggers believed it. Bloggers aren’t wildly bright and when they get desperate enough, tend to grasp on to any alternate reality that cable news will throw at them. But it amazes me that while Bill O’Reilly and Sean Hannity blew themselves hoarse about skewed polling, Fox News’ own polls were in line with the trend they were decrying.
And Republican bloggers, like Republican voters generally, have been growing increasingly isolated from reality for at least a decade now. Remember how they spent all of 2006 insisting that everything was fine in Iraq and Afghanistan?
Cable news – actually, Fox and MSNBC – are in the alternate reality business. That’s what they’re all about, and they aren’t exactly trying to hide it from you. They microtarget, which is why both networks have a smaller total audience than the fucking Game Show Channel.
I can easily see why the Republican party would encourage the narrative. If they didn’t, their vote would self-suppress and there’d be very little point in having an election at all. But never once did I think that they actually believed their own moronic talking points.
Um, about that.

"They thought intensity and enthusiasm were on their side this time — poll after poll showed Republicans were more motivated to vote than Democrats – and that would translate into votes for Romney. As a result, they believed the public/media polls were skewed — they thought those polls oversampled Democrats and didn’t reflect Republican enthusiasm. They based their own internal polls on turnout levels more favorable to Romney. That was a grave miscalculation, as they would see on election night."
Said the adviser: "We went into the evening confident we had a good path to victory. I don’t think there was one person who saw this coming."
Another staffer added: "There’s nothing worse than when you think you’re going to win, and you don’t. It was like a sucker punch."

Fuck. Me. They actually fucking bought their own nonsense.
That changes my thinking on why they lost as badly as they did considerably. The simple fact of the matter is that they’re stupid.
Look, turnout models can turn on a dime. They certainly did before 2004 and ’06. And they turned back between ’08 and ’10. Then there was a registration gap to consider. Team Obama telegraphed that they were devoting endless amounts of money on registration and their ground game, which the GOP and their lackeys mocked and made up "burn-rate" theories to counter.
Shit, the only thing that saved them in the House was freshly gerrymandered districts.
One more thing. There was a census a couple of years ago, just like the Constitution demands. And the Department of Commerce didn’t bury the results in the backyard. The demographic changes were out there for anyone interested enough to find.
For years now, I’ve been saying that Republicans are either lying or stupid. I thought – Christ,  I hoped – it was the former rather than the latter. I can live with lying. As a matter of fact, everything I know about politics tells me to expect lying.
Stupid, on the other hand, scares the shit out of me. Stupid is nothing short of terrifying!
A presidential campaign, at least the private side of one, is supposed to be an exercise in cold analysis, carefully weighing costs against benefits and making tough, but very significant choices based on that. Richard Nixon used to call it "nut-cutting."
The Romney-Ryan campaign actually skewed their own polling to counter public polling that turned out not to be skewed at all. Let me repeat that, because it sort of important. The Romney-Ryan campaign actually skewed their own polling to counter public polling that turned out not to be skewed at all.

What I’m trying to get my head around is what would have happened if these silly bastards actually won.
I get that GOP messaging has to at least pretend to reflect the wildly dumb and incredibly superstitious beliefs of their snake-handling primary voters. But I always assumed that it was just an exercise in cold, practical cynicism. Play up to the fears, prejudices and superstitions of the yokels and shithead bloggers to get elected and then govern however you see fit when in office.
But I’m going to repeat this once again: The Romney-Ryan campaign actually skewed their own polling to counter public polling that turned out not to be skewed at all. What was sold as "the most competent managerial ticket in all of history actually fell for their own bullshit narrative. And unlike their hillbilly blogger sycophants, they paid a ton of money to do it in the absence of any real evidence.
That makes me re-think my previous held position that the Romney-Ryan economic platform was another cynical ploy. The Economist – hardly Mother Jones in a top hat and ascot – beautifully wrote, "For all his businesslike intentions, Mr Romney has an economic plan that works only if you don’t believe most of what he says."
I have little other choice at this point but to believe that Mr. Romney believes most of what he said. Sing it with me, teenagers: The Romney-Ryan campaign actually skewed their own polling to counter public polling that turned out not to be skewed at all.

Thank Christ these people didn’t actually win. There’s absolutely no way of measuring the damage they could have done.

Posted Yesterday by Skippy Stalin


About George Fisher

George is a freelance writer, an author and a Democratic political consultant. He has worked as Deputy Communications Director for a Senatorial campaign and Campaign Manager for several NC House races and one congressional race. He previously worked as a news producer for a local television station.
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