January 10, 2006
Rasmussen polls Texas

Rasmussen is first out of the gate for 2006 with polls in the Texas Senate and Governor's races, and the results are a bit odd. Let's start with the Senate poll, where they have Kay Bailey Hutchison leading Barbara Radnofsky by a 64-25 margin, with 4% for "other" and 6% "don't know". This contrasts with an earlier Zogby Interactive poll that had it as 52-34 for Hutchison. Like Greg, I could maybe see KBH win 64% of the vote in November. She did it in 2000, though that was against a candidate who spent no money and did no campaigning. I think she's unlikely to do that well against someone with a pulse and a purpose, but it's not impossible. What I have to ask is this: Is it likely that Hutchison in January is polling almost ten points better than George Bush did in June of 2004? Look at this. Rasmussen had Bush at 55% in May and June, and at 57% in August. Do you believe that KBH is that much more popular now than Bush was then, or do you think, as I do, that maybe the pollster goofed and oversampled Republicans this month? These things do happen. Remember, a 95% confidence interval means that one time in 20 you get a bogus result. This could be the one.

If you believe it's a goof, then there's no real need to dissect the Governor poll numbers, which, depending on if you believe Zogby or the Texas poll suggests that Strayhorn got all her support from Bell and Kinky but none from Perry, or all from Bell and Perry but none from Kinky, all the while having almost no effect on the level of undecided voters. Does that make sense to you?

So, color me still waiting for polling information. If SurveyUSA or some other outfit agrees with these numbers, then I'll change my tune. For now, I don't buy it.

Posted by Charles Kuffner on January 10, 2006 to Election 2006 | TrackBack

you're holding out for surveyUSA? talk about polls that arent reliable....

It is KBH. She is well liked and female with extremely high name recognition. doesnt surprise me at all that she would poll higher than the president. and no i have not and will not ever support KBH

as for the governor's race, there have been so many crazy changes lately, and most of the perry attacks havent even come close to starting so i think you could likely blame those numbers on voters who really havent made their minds up, even though they told themselves last year that they would be voting for perry....

Posted by: you're kidding me on January 10, 2006 9:58 AM

You're wrong about SurveyUSA. Their track record is much better than you think.

Posted by: Charles Kuffner on January 10, 2006 10:15 AM

Survey USA just about hit the Virginia Gov's race on the button.

Posted by: pc on January 10, 2006 10:42 AM

color me blue, yellow and green...

Zogby is truthful, not partisan enough to oversample republicans nor democrats to try to create what amounts to a cover story for...

Soon Rasmussen will have to sample only very red republicans as judges, jurors, journalists and we figure out that these are the times that try lies, spies, and to terrorize...

yet, the greatest danger is extinction by global warming....the longer we wait the harder it is to reverse.

Posted by: Support Science to Reverse Global Warming, if still possible on January 10, 2006 10:57 AM

the greatest danger is extinction by global warming.

Global warming is a serious threat to our quality of life, especially for those who live near the ocean. But words like "extinction" severly overstate the threat.

The human race is not going to go extinct because the Earth gets a few degrees warmer and has more and nastier hurricanes and droughts. There'll just be less of us left in the already warm parts of the globe, and more in the cooler parts. We may be more miserable, but we'll still be here!

The real threat is to species that can't just get up and move, like plants and trees. Some of these are already threatened.

We definitely need to elect a government that will take global warming seriously. But we do ourselves no favors with "the sky is falling" rhetoric. It only makes it easier for global warming skeptics to paint us as the boys who cried wolf (to mix fables rather horribly).

Posted by: Mathwiz on January 10, 2006 2:57 PM

Having watched SurveyUSA do its thing as the only public polling firm for the SA mayoral election, I can partially agree. They were horribly off target in their first/early polls, slowly but surely came inline with the middle polls and finally hit the nail on the head with their last poll or two. Which, from what I've heard, is how they did in Bill White's first mayoral campaign.

Of course the first polls only served to bolster the 'Castro is going to run away with this thing' meme, which perpetuated the (slightly untrue)fact that he was running circles around everyone else at the very beginning. Which can hurt campaigns who don't have massive bank accounts or soft support to begin with.

From what I've heard, although I myself don't have premium Rasmussen membership, Rasmussen seems to have oversampled Republicans- which leads us to those results. I think this is different than the 95% certainty rule though. If Rasmussen oversampled Republicans, then a different poll using what we believed to be the true partisan demographics of Texas would change this outcome. If they had done this, AND come out with the same results, that might be filed underneath 95% certainty blunder. OR, it could be a mix of both- Rasmussen oversampled Republicans and it's just the one out every twenty bad polls.

Posted by: Cincinnatus on January 10, 2006 3:50 PM

At what point was Survey USA off on the SA mayoral race, it seems they were close the whole way.

Posted by: Tek_XX on January 11, 2006 2:53 AM

The very first poll (Feb/early March?) they put out had Castro already in the low 40s- the same percentage he ended up with in the May general. Both Schubert and Hardberger were somewhere in the teens.

I find it very hard to believe that 2/5 of the electorate 1) knew who Castro was at the turn of 2005 AND had already decided to vote for him. According to those polls Castro was pulling in almost as much support as Hardberger and Schubert were combined... three plus months out.

The closer we got to election day, the closer the polls came to reality, with SurveyUSA finally hitting the nail on the head two days before the election- 52-48 Hardberger.

Posted by: Cincinnatus on January 11, 2006 4:54 PM

As regards extinction, a number of scientists were speaking of our being in the sixth biggest extinction event four years ago, before they knew of the greater potential harm created by the peat bogs/permafrost melt in Siberia and Alaska which emits methane--a gas 22 times worse than CO2.

When climate experts are the ones surprised by the acceleration of global warming, this means that their worst case scenarios have not be worst case enough. Not a good sign.

By waiting so long to do the right thing, we have made global warming harder to correct. If we start doing the right thing today, we have already committed ourselves to endure an amount of global warming that will get worse.

We hope to recover support for science and research. We will need them.

Posted by: Support Science to Reverse Global Warming, if still possible on January 11, 2006 7:16 PM

so now I proofread:

When climate experts are the ones surprised by the acceleration of global warming, this means that their worst case scenarios have not been worst case enough. Not a good sign.

Posted by: Support Science to Reverse Global Warming, if still possible on January 12, 2006 1:03 AM

Perhaps the term "surprised" by accelerated warming as used by climate experts may be a euphemism for worst case scenarios were censored...

Posted by: Support Science to Reverse Global Warming, if still possible on January 15, 2006 11:57 AM

According to Stephen Hawking, he is now the most worried about a "Runaway Greenhouse Effect" so severe that all life on the planet would die...a total extinction event in which Earth will become as lifeless as the planet Venus.

Why would anyone trust anything that Republicans say about science or any scientific research, especially on a matter as grave as our life and death from global warming caused by Thelma Bush and his Louise GOP's Voluntary Pollution Laws? They have to deny global warming so that they can keep polluting to save corporations a few bucks until their extinction level job performance finally accomodates their apocalyptic fundamentalists.

Posted by: Support Science to Reverse Global Warming, if still possible on July 25, 2006 9:31 PM