As I expected, the explanations on why the polls were wrong have already begun. As of this writing, the GOP has 217 confirmed House wins. I will just guess, given that there are still several races too close to call, that they will control.
That means the polls were right.
The polls were right about the Senate staying in Democratic hands. The polls were right about new governorships for us. The polls predicted we barely had/have a Chinaman’s chance at holding the House.
One can say that in a sense they were off, because of the margins they were suggesting that the GOP would win the House by were fairly high (though again, we do not know that yet).
But that still means they have probably called the winning party in each category-and ergo, all these amateur pollsters running around on social media who said the Democrats were going to win were even wronger even if their numbers were closer.
I like Seth Abramson, but this is kind of what you’ll be seeing as this week drags on:
Let me take this moment to say how much I loathe the term “narrative”. It is a Republican paranoid nonsense word, and lefties need to stop using it. But fuck it, let’s run with it-why did they drive this narrative…that is pretty much the question Abramson wants answered.
You won’t like some of the dumb armchair psychology being used to explain it. I’m too lazy to find you some examples( I promise I have seen plenty), but trust me when I say that, if I may, the “narrative” is that the pollsters, in collusion with the GOP, wanted to drive down turnout and discourage Democrats from bothering to vote.
I am hoping you realize how stupid that sounds. You may not. You may be stupid, stubborn, or conspiracy-minded, take your pick.
If anything, that will generally make your average Democratic voter more determined than ever to show up and show out. We hear we are on the wrong end of a battle, we wake up and do shit. I don’t know who is profiling us as gloomy mopers who give up the minute they hear about troop strength on the other side, but this is a bullshit “insight” into the Democratic mindset.
And us showing up was exactly what the fuck happened. So indeed, if there was any plan to depress turnout in the manner Abramson is suggesting, it backfired wildly and was a really dumb plan. We fucking took it to them on Election Day. We were never not going to, regardless of what the polls and the media were saying. Democratic voters had the signal and weren’t listening to the noise. We saw the Christian fascism coming over the hill and we said NO. Maybe he’s referring to a possible attempt to shape independent minds, but that is a fool’s game because independents are stupid and you never know what they are going to do no matter what feedbag they choose.
Stop listening to the polls, you say? Stop listening to the people who say stop listening to the polls. More data is better than less, and if you really need to drill down on a poll because its numbers seem hard to believe, the methodology is out there.
I really thought we were going to take the plunge. Didn’t you?
Polling got scary as fuck there in the run-up. The fascists were out speaking confidently about their fascist plans. They thought that was what America wanted and needed.
Enough people saw the danger and strangled the movement in its crib. This midterm has been very odd in that the majority party basically stayed one, and in fact we could still hold both bodies. We don’t yet know who will really control the House at this point, but if we Democrats do win it will have been a bit too close for comfort. As of today, there have been seven net pickups by Republicans-enough to narrowly change the balance of power if all races hold. Other than that we have matched them flip for flip. That’s not optimum at all, but if we lose it is not easy for Republicans to claim some sort of conservative “mandate”, and we should be thankful and pat ourselves on the back that new voting laws across America did not stop us from coming out in force to make sure the fundamental nature of America, that of a democracy, was preserved.
So I’m glad I can now have a somewhat sunnier disposition for now and say we aren’t going down the crapper completely…just yet. We still have a rogue SCOTUS shredding precedent that isn’t originalist in nature, and of course we will have to see what kind of effect a Trump run does to 2024 and see if fascism with the proper “strongman” leading it will raise its ugly head once more. We also have to think about who will be taking on whomever the GOP selects-Biden has said he will likely run again, but if he doesn’t Jaime Harrison better think fast as to who is best positioned to put the Trump phenom in the shallow grave it belongs in. Even then we will still probably have to contend with Ron DeSantis, who is also a fascist but may put a more genial facade on the movement.
For now, I cannot exhale fully until the votes are counted and we know who will control the House. But nevertheless, democracy had a hell of a showing even if we come up a little short.
On Wednesday, I mounted a minor defense of the polling industry. I did so because I looked around and found them wanting, but I have to say, I found unprofessional people with hunches even wronger.
As the number of R-flipped seats in the House continues to climb, we are approaching poll prediction territory. It is still not anywhere near a rout, but once all is said and done there will probably be enough for that dipshit McCarthy to claim a mandate.
Disbelieving polls to me is like disbelieving in science; once you stop listening, you are doing nothing but alchemy and falling back on faith when you predict. Every skeptically minded person should watch, listen and let the professionals do their work. People on social media keep screaming in caps “STOP LISTENING TO THE POLLS!!!!” not because they are wrong, but because they are not being told what they want to hear. Thoughtless people completely forget things like margins of error-that’s a pollster’s admission that based on their sample size, there’s a good chance of wobble one way or another.
I have a short, simple message as we wrap up the counts for people to consider next time we do this.
Follow the polls with a watchful, curious mind-also, follow the news and consider what that might do to the numbers. Understand that there is a strange mushy middle that breaks one way or the other the day of the election. But do not get into the forecasting business unless you have the requisite credentials to do so. I’m just telling you for you own good, and hopefully your friends will forget the dumb uninformed calls you made and not wonder what else you might be wrong about.