Thursday, September 25, 2008

Don't believe the polls

Hot off the presses.  The nonpartisan Pew Research Center finds that the previous assumptions that cell phone users thought similarly to landline phone users who are able to be polled are likely not valid.  In fact, 62% of young cell phone-only users preferred democrats and Obama specifically. 

Therefore, any polls that are head-to-head national and do not include cell phone users are very, very suspect.

The Associated Press: Study: Omitting cell phone users may affect polls
Earlier studies — including a joint Pew-AP report two years ago — concluded that cell and landline users had similar enough views that not calling cell users had no major impact on poll findings. The new report concludes that "this assumption is increasingly questionable," especially for young people, who use cells heavily.

Combining polls it conducted in August and September, Pew found that of people under age 30 with only cell phones, 62 percent were Democrats and 28 percent Republicans. Among landline users the same age that gap was narrower: 54 percent Democrats, 36 percent GOP.

Similarly, young cell users preferred Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama over Republican nominee John McCain by 35 percentage points. For young landline users, it was a smaller 13-point Obama edge.

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