Mercury Rising 鳯女

Politics, life, and other things that matter

In Other News, Sun Rises In East

Posted by Phoenix Woman on August 30, 2009

Scott Rasmussen is an unabashed Republican, yet — up until the latest election cycle — he generally played it fairly straight for a GOP pollster, in that while he had bias, it was predictable and consistent enough to allow one to adjust for it. You could take his numbers, shave off a point from the Republican and give it to the Democrats, and usually arrive at the truth.

Not so this year. The gloves are off and Rasmussen’s thumb is now heavily, blatantly on the scale. Per Greg Sargent (via DKos’ Steve Singiser):

But now take a look at the question wording:

Suppose that Democrats agreed on a health care reform bill that is opposed by all Republicans in Congress. Should the Democrats pass that bill or should they change the bill to win support from a reasonable number of Republicans?

24% They should pass the bill
58% They should change the bill
19% Not sure

Fifty eight percent say Dems should craft health care in order to get support from a “reasonable” number of Republicans. Yet the poll also includes the amusing caveat that the pollster did not quantify what constitutes “a reasonable number” of Republican supporters. Clever, eh?

A-yep. As Singiser points out, that’s not the only evidence of Rasmussen fudging their polls lately:

Now, polling on health care has been all over the map, as Nate over at 538 pointed out earlier this week in a piece which attempted to address the common flaws which led to biased results.

What is consistent about Rasmussen’s coverage of the health care debate is their incessant desire to frame the debate in ways designed to denigrate both the Congress and President Obama. One of the most insipid examples of this was a survey earlier in the week in which Rasmussen reported that two-thirds of voters believed that they understood the health care reform proposal as well, or better, than President Obama.

Of course, there is objective evidence to prove that this poll is false. Indeed, in the recent poll conducted for AARP, just thirty-seven percent of Americans could correctly identify what is meant by a “public option”. Nearly one-half of voters either thought it was a total nationalized healthcare program, or admitted that they had no idea.  

Asking voters how well they understand a certain piece of legislation is not unlike asking them if they are patriotic, or if they are middle class. The default answer is always going to be “yes”. Surely, Rasmussen must know this this, and just as clearly, they must have understood that the poll’s results were essentially meaningless. They ran with it, anyway, apparently more enthused at the prospect of taking another quick shot at the President’s knees than they were with actually divining public opinion on a sensitive issue like health care.

There’s more at the post link. It’s truly amazing and will almost certainly be ignored by the GOP/Media Complex.

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