Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Wayne Holland And Fuzzy Numbers

Utah Democratic Chairperson Wayne Holland was on today's Midday Metro at KCPW. He said: "You see with the recent polls on approval ratings that Congressman Matheson is 17% above President Bush". He clearly wants the listener to think Congressman Matheson is more popular in Utah than President Bush. He is basing his numbers on a recent Deseret News/KSL poll. In this poll, if you add up the points under "strongly approve" and "somewhat approve" for both Congressman Matheson and President Bush then subtract one from the other, you get 17%. Problem: Congressman Matheson was not polled statewide. There is no poll comparing Utahns' opinion of President Bush to Congressman Matheson. Nor is there a poll comparing President Bush and Congressman Matheson among residents of District 2.

6 Comments:

Anonymous JackJack said...

lessee ... Matheson got polled in District two (you know, where he was elected and all that) and the Prez got polled across the state (you know, where he was elected and all that) so ... yeah, the comment by Holland works for me as both men were polled by those that they're beholden to for votes.

11/22/2005 11:36:00 PM  
Blogger Ethan said...

But President Bush's constituency is nationwide.

So it still doesn't work.

11/23/2005 01:52:00 AM  
Anonymous Ryan said...

jackjack...looks like you need a refresher course in basic statistics. Sampling? What's that?

Comparing both of these polls shows either ineptitude on the part of the state democratic party leadership, or it boarders on intellectual dishonesty. Whichever way you call it, its apples and oranges...apples and oranges...

11/23/2005 08:23:00 AM  
Anonymous jackjack (just jack) said...

yeah, but Matheson's not such a bad guy and the Prez is a dick, so, while I know that "technically" it's VERY VERY wrong, it still "feels" ok to me.

Besides, Matheson as the 1 out of 434 on the Congressional COLA makes me like him even more today.

11/23/2005 10:15:00 AM  
Blogger pramahaphil said...

I wonder where did KSL/DesNews took their sampling. It could be a fair survey if it was District 2 wide. Some of the counties in District 2 are pretty staunchly conservative. If the survey only included SL County, than I'll agree for sure the numbers hold absolutely no water.

However, most Utah news agencies seem to forget about the parts of the state not on the Wasatch front. Therefore, I'm guessing that if I could find out how and where the sampling was taken I'd find out the numbers are suspect.

11/23/2005 11:53:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have done these surveys before and they are done throughout the district. Matheson's district is 1/3 of the state, so I feel comfortable with this numbers

11/26/2005 10:39:00 AM  

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