Expert in political forecasting Larry Sabato criticized the Washington Post this week for publishing a new poll that showed Donald Trump ahead of Joe Biden by a significant margin.
What did the survey show?
According to the startling Washington Post/ABC News survey, Trump would defeat Biden among registered voters by a margin of 52% to 42% if the election were to take place today.
Furthermore, the poll revealed that only 37% of people like Biden’s job. This is a clear sign that Biden will not be re-elected because most Americans don’t like how he is handling the economy and also the border problem.
It gets worse for Biden because about two-thirds of Democratic voters and people leaning Democratic would like the Democratic Party to choose someone besides Biden in 2024. Some of those people don’t care much about who takes over; they just want somebody other than Biden.
It was also found that most Americans don’t think House Republicans who are investigating Biden for possible impeachment are unfairly going after him because they think he is crooked. It was 58% who said Biden is being “held accountable” and only 32% who said that he’s being “unfairly targeted by his political opponents.”
What did people do?
Professor Sabato, who teaches politics at the University of Virginia, said that the Washington Post was wrong to print the findings of the poll because they are “laughable.”
“The Washington Post–ABC poll doesn’t matter. It’s a silly oddity (Trump up 10 points over Biden—laughable),” Sabato replied. “My question is: How could you put out a poll that is so obviously false? Will be embarrassing for you for a long time.”
After seeing the poll results, Sabato stated he was “torn between scoffing and laughing” in a separate reaction post.
In the same way, Nate Cohn of the New York Times criticized the Washington Post for calling the study “probably an outlier.”
“Though I do have a pretty big beef with ABC/Post here, which is that if you disclose consecutive ‘outlying’ poll results, like R+7 in May and R+10 today, you are not able to dismiss your results,” Cohn said. “It’s really extremely difficult to release outlying poll outcomes,” Cohn said.
“If it occurs twice in a row in the exact same race, it’s obvious that something about your approach is to blame. You either have to accept this and stand by it, or you have to give up and go home,” he stated.
The poll seems to be unique because no other poll has given Trump such a big lead—almost all of them show Trump and Biden tied within the statistical error range of error. However, it’s not clear what about the poll’s methods may have led to the result.
Some critics say that too many Republicans were included in the study, but people were asked to identify their party. Only 25% said they were Republicans, while 25% said they were Democrats and 42% said they were independents.