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Lost in a Gallup - Polling Failure in U.S. Presidential Elections

  • Pocket

  • 2024

  • Engelsk

This update of a lively, first-of-its-kind study of polling misfires and fiascoes in U.S. presidential campaigns takes up pollsters’ failure over the decades to offer accurate assessments of the most important of American elections. Lost in a Gallup tells the story of polling flops and failures in presidential elections since 1936. Polls do go bad, as outcomes in 2020, 2016, 2012, 2004, and 2000 all remind us. This updated edition includes a new chapter and conclusion that address the 2020 polling surprise and considers whether polls will get it right in 2024.  As author W. Joseph Campbell discusses, polling misfires in presidential elections are not all alike. Pollsters have anticipated tight elections when landslides have occurred. They have pointed to the wrong winner in closer elections. Misleading state polls have thrown off expected national outcomes. Polling failure also can lead to media error. Journalists covering presidential races invariably take their lead from polls. When polls go bad, media narratives can be off-target as well. Lost in a Gallup encourages readers to treat election polls with healthy skepticism, recognizing that they could be wrong.

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