Impeachment Trends, Biased Sampling and why Batman knows best

Trump Nixon.png

Monmouth University has conducted an impeachment poll. It is not hard to see where the bias lies. 27% Republicans, 30% Democrats and 43% Independent. In nearly all polls conducted by the university, this is the respondent stack skew. It is so obvious that one could be forgiven for thinking the ABC Q&A programme must be taking the roll call. No surprise that Trump’s approval rating remains firmly stuck in the low 40s according to Monmouth. Monmouth had Hillary Clinton at a 9% lead over Trump in mid-October 2016. CM wonders why? Rasmussen, which was the most consistent and accurate poll leading into the 2016 election, has Trump at 48%, ahead of Obama at the same point in his presidency by 2%.

Monmouth wrote in its most recent poll, “At this time, 44% of Americans feel that Trump should be impeached and compelled to leave the presidency, while 52% disagree with this course of action. These numbers mark a shift from Monmouth’s prior poll in August (35% supported impeachment and 59% did not), but it is not the first time these results have been found in the two years Monmouth has been asking this question.”

There is something telling that there have been impeachment talks for over 2 years. Just the subject matter has continually shifted. Maybe the August 2019 Monmouth impeachment poll made the level of reasoning more clear. The 25% Republican, 30% Democrat, 45% Independent produced the following results,

– A good idea or bad idea to impeach Trump. 41% plays 51% respectively,

– Why would it be a good idea to impeach – Top 5 responses – Need to follow evidence (18%), Broken the Law (17%), Moral Character (17%), Bad Policies (16%), Racism (11%).

– Why would it be a bad idea to impeach – Top 5 responses – Trump has done nothing wrong (27%), Waste of Time (22%), Partisan Witch Hunt (13%), Trump has done Good Job (12%), Congress should work on other things (10%).

Interesting to see that racism, moral character and bad policies are viewed as plausible grounds for impeachment. The March 2019 poll from Monmouth, the question put as to whether Democrats are more interested in the truth vs undermining Trump, the results were 31% vs 46% respectively.

So even with a high proportion of skew against Republicans (Consistently at 25-27%), the results are rarely pointing to massive landslides against Trump. It should come as no surprise that when analysing the party affiliation in the poll, there is heavy partisan bias which sort of defeats the purpose of the poll putting out meaningful data. If anything the “independent” people who have contributed to the poll do not seem to be giving Monmouth the results they are hoping to get.

Of course, the mainstream media made extra effort to report that 4 in 10 Republicans thought Trump “probably did” mention the possibility of investigating Biden implying 60% didn’t. If you read the hyperlink address, it clearly makes out the majority of GOP supporters don’t believe which is disingenuous. 31% said, “don’t know.” Do we assume that all people read the transcript?

In this day and age the number of people that make kneejerk reactions – driven by media headlines (or suspiciously cut videos to remove context) on both sides of the partisan divide – without even reading the body of the article, let alone facts means such data polls tell us little. 

Last week, Rasmussen noted, “But 46% think it’s more likely that Trump will be reelected in 2020 than defeated by the Democratic nominee or impeached, unchanged from late July…28% see a win by the Democrats’ candidate as more likely, down from 33% two months ago. 17% believe Trump is likely to be impeached before serving his full term in office, up from 11% in the last survey but down from a high of 29% when Rasmussen Reports first asked this question in late December 2017.”

In the end, Batman knows best. “Don’t trust the polls.

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