October 26, 2016

"The polling data in 1980 had Jimmy Carter nine points, winning by nine points, four or five days out."

"I will never forget that election night, folks. In 1980 it was so bad for the Democrats — they got skunked so bad — Jimmy Carter conceded before 10 p.m. Eastern time.  Those three networks, you should have seen the long faces and all of the reporters that were at various campaign headquarter locations...."

127 comments:

mccullough said...

That was a Hoover level loss for Carter

JOB said...

Until I could figure such things out on my own, growing up, I always wondered my father, who listened to Barry Farber back in the day, laughed so hard that night...

JOB

Matt said...

This is so not true. Reagan lead most of way down the stretch. Only the Gallup poll went back and forth. But other polls and the Electoral polling has Reagan ahead.

The polling actually had Reagan up in the last three months of polling. This site does a great job of showing that Reagan was ahead in polling and according to the media.
http://www.mofopolitics.com/2016/10/04/lets-face-rush-limbaugh-retarded/

The poll most often cited in 1980 was the Gallup poll which did show Carter ahead by 6 or 7 points right before the ONE debate they had. That one debate they had was held ONE week before the election and it solidified Reagan's lead to a wide victory. So what some in the media didn't see was a landslide but that debate helped. This election is different. The debates did not help Trump. So in context the 1980 election is nothing like this election in 2016.

I remember the 1980 election. It was much closer than this one.

Brando said...

Did the polls really have Reagan behind only days before the 1980 election? Anyone have the historical data on that?

I recall reading that Reagan had pulled slightly ahead by the time of his one debate with Carter and then shot ahead after that. Much of his growth was due to a collapse of Anderson's numbers.

mockturtle said...

I remember how thrilled I was. I also remember the dismay on Tom Brokaw's face in 1994 when Republicans took control of the House. Priceless! :-)

Brando said...

"This is so not true. Reagan lead most of way down the stretch. Only the Gallup poll went back and forth. But other polls and the Electoral polling has Reagan ahead."

Thanks--that's what I figured. Limbaugh has done much to wreck his remaining credibility this year, what with his "I always knew Trump wasn't serious about illegals!" comments back when Trump was wavering on it a few months ago. Uh, thanks for warning your listeners?

eddie willers said...

I certainly remember (I was a Carter supporter living in Austin, Texas at the time)

We all knew Carter's hope of reelection crashed in the Iranian desert along with those "rescue" helicopters. Even as a brain dead liberal rooting for Jimmy, I knew the polls were crazy.

They didn't give it up until right before the election when they finally had to tell the truth. They at first just said it was a late surge of undecided voters, but then they decided that there was a dirty "October Surprise" consisting of George Bush going overseas to Iran (or France or somewhere) to beg/pay them to not release the hostages.

We laughed at that one too.

mockturtle said...

Even the credibility-challenged Snopes says: WHAT'S TRUE: Ronald Reagan won the 1980 general election in a landslide despite trailing as much as 8% behind Jimmy Carter in some mid-October polls.

Michael K said...

"I remember the 1980 election. It was much closer than this one."

I knew the 1980 election. It was a friend of mine. This is no 1980 election.

Maybe.

Michael K said...

then they decided that there was a dirty "October Surprise" consisting of George Bush going overseas to Iran (or France or somewhere) to beg/pay them to not release the hostages.

That was Gary Sick, aptly named Democrat "consultant" who still insists it was true. It would have taken an SR 71 to make the times work.

eddie willers said...

Even the credibility-challenged Snopes says: WHAT'S TRUE: Ronald Reagan won the 1980 general election in a landslide despite trailing as much as 8% behind Jimmy Carter in some mid-October polls.

And keep in mind, as far as polling went, it was Gallup and the seven dwarfs. Hardly anyone even looked at the others.

Darrell said...

It would have taken an SR 71 to make the times work.

Jeff Greenfield from Nightline was with Bush when Bush bought a round for the reporters after 2AM and then attended a pancake breakfast at 8AM (Greenfield saw him getting ready before 7AM.) Perhaps Bush had access to FTL transportation provided by sitting President Carter.

gerry said...

"This is so not true. Reagan lead most of way down the stretch. Only the Gallup poll went back and forth. But other polls and the Electoral polling has Reagan ahead."

There you go again. Why, then, at 8:15 p.m. on November 4, 1980, were David Brinkley and Tom Brokaw so astonished that the polling had given no insight into what was really happening? From 36 years ago:


BRINKLEY: I'd like to ask a question of you folks. We have here what I think reasonably could be called a landslide or certainly something approaching a landslide. Where did it come from? Nobody anticipated it. No polls predicted it. No one saw it coming. How did that happen? I don't want to knock the polls, because I believe in them, and they generally do very good work. One thing I wondered. Have a lot of people -- did a lot of people decide to vote for Reagan, but didn't want to say so?

BROKAW: Well, that's always been a factor. He's an actor, after all. A lot of people have made fun of him, and maybe I ought not be publicly in favor of him.

BRINKLEY: Again, don't want to pick on the polls, but there was none of this insight.

[Emphasis added]

Egad. Faulty polls.

CJinPA said...

GALLUP: "After trailing Carter by 8 points among registered voters (and by 3 points among likely voters) right before their debate, Reagan moved into a 3-point lead among likely voters immediately afterward."

The debate was Oct. 28 and the election Nov. 4.

CJinPA said...

I remember how thrilled I was. I also remember the dismay on Tom Brokaw's face in 1994 when Republicans took control of the House. Priceless! :-)

Shortly after, Peter Jennings of ABC News gave his infamous radio commentary:

"Some thoughts on those angry voters. Ask parents of any two-year-old and they can tell you about those temper tantrums: the stomping feet, the rolling eyes, the screaming. It's clear that the anger controls the child and not the other way around. It's the job of the parent to teach the child to control the anger and channel it in a positive way. Imagine a nation full of uncontrolled two-year-old rage. The voters had a temper tantrum last week....Parenting and governing don't have to be dirty words: the nation can't be run by an angry two-year-old."
-- ABC World News Tonight anchor Peter Jennings in his daily ABC Radio commentary, November 14.

This jerk just dismissed the American electorate as children because they had the gall to elect the first GOP House majority in nearly a half-century. Then he went on TV and pretended to be a "journalist."

Brent said...

I remember this election. It was called before I got home in California, hours before the polls closed. Voted for Carter because since he was losing, it wouldn't matter.
I remember that night VERY well.

mockturtle said...

Jennings was such an asshole. A Canadian asshole, at that.

Brent said...

The election reporting that got me was 2000, Peter Jennings lecturing Americans. So many unhappy liberal reprters. Delicious!!

Fabi said...

Gallop was the only credible polling outfit at the time. Matt is trying to re-write history. This is my shocked face.

Static Ping said...

Wikipedia on the 1980 polling

In the late polls, Reagan was down 4, then down 6, then up 3. The actual result was up 10. The Gallup polls were seriously wrong.

Note that in 1984 they got the popular vote exactly right and were in the ballpark throughout October.

Freeman Hunt said...

Remember when Scott Brown won that Senate seat? I went to someone's house to see the reaction at MSNBC. Tears, poetry. Hilarious.

CJinPA said...

In the late polls, Reagan was down 4, then down 6, then up 3. The actual result was up 10. The Gallup polls were seriously wrong.

Gallup had Reagan down 8 and then up 3. Isn't that close to polls you're citing?

rehajm said...

Gallop was the only credible polling outfit at the time. Matt is trying to re-write history.

Silver supports this: ...includes years such as 1980 when there were significant late polling errors.

People may be underestimating the chance of a big polling error

CJinPA said...

If you want to see the best case of Trump Derangement Syndrome, Google the Time.com piece from Tavis Smiley "I Fear the Return of Slavery if Trump Wins" or something like that. (Not sure if that was posted on Althouse.)

MaxedOutMama said...

I remember that night. I still watched TV then. Switched between channels, and they were all clearly dazed, distraught and amazed. Rude half-comments about voters. Long faces is a complete understatement - some were clearly almost in pain as they watched the states roll up on the board.

Even then, they considered themselves an elite, and the voters rude peasants who didn't know what was best for the country.

I think this is a very different type of election than 1980, and a very different electorate. The polling might be skewed either in Trump's favor or against it, and there is no way to know which. However, one commonality between the 1980 election and this one is that then a lot of straight-ticket Dem voters crossed over, and this time among people I know I see the same thing. Also, the theory that Trump gets no Hispanic support is idiotic. There are a lot of legal immigrants in this country, and they are rolling strongly for Trump.

But, if one were to be honest, Trump is the closest thing to a Democrat in this election. The Clintons belong to their own party. They have never belonged to any other.

David said...

In 1980 you could feel the election slipping away from Carter over the unrelenting bad publicity of the hostages in Iran. Nowadays the media would be finding a way to blame the Republicans for the hostages or ignoring it as much as possible. In this election the relentless negative publicity is all about Trump. Also a very different electorate with different concerns. So I don't give the argument about 1980 much credence.

Gk1 said...

I think Rush's underlying point is interesting and what I remember as a first time voter. As bad as Carter was in office, he would limp in for a victory. Pundits of the day kept reminding us it was very rare to see an incumbent defeated. You had to go back to FDR and Hoover to find a parallel. And were we in a depression?!? Who can take "Bedtime for Bonzo" seriously as a candidate? Outrageous! No one should vote for Reagan. Isn't that what is precisely happening with trump?

David said...

Today on some cable network they were talking about Trump's interview for a biography given in (?) 2014. Trump supposedly said that he puts a high premium on winning and that there were a lot of people he does not respect. They treated this as a revelation confirming everything bad about Trump.

It occurred to me that Hillary obviously cares about winning over all else and I recalled that she had branded half the country as "deplorables." This escaped the notice of the newsies.

Freeman Hunt said...

I don't think he'll win, but I would guess that Trump is significantly under-polling because people are unwilling to admit to a pollster that they are going to vote for him.

CJinPA said...

I remember that night. I still watched TV then. Switched between channels, and they were all clearly dazed, distraught and amazed. Rude half-comments about voters. Long faces is a complete understatement - some were clearly almost in pain as they watched the states roll up on the board.

I was such a nerd that I recorded Frank Reynolds of ABC News solemnly reporting Reagan's landslide. And by recording, I mean with a tape recorder. What 15-year-old kid does that?

wholelottasplainin' said...

Let the record reflect that neither Matt nor Brando have returned to contest the counterfactual truth or admit being wrong.

Michael K said...

"But, if one were to be honest, Trump is the closest thing to a Democrat in this election."

Maybe a 1960 Democrat. So was Reagan although for him it was about 1954.

Sebastian said...

Carter has never forgiven Americans for his loss. Remains to be seen whether Trump and the Trumpites will. Not that they should: electing Hill would in some sense be unforgivable.

Hari said...

ooking at the Real Clear Politics site:

ABC Poll 10/21 - 10/24: Clinton +8
ABC Poll 10/20 - 10/23: Clinton + 12

Just consider what this says: Each of these polls contains one-fourth of the sample on 10/21, one-fourth on 10/22, and one-fourth on 10/23.
The entire swing is caused by dropping the one-fourth of the sample from 10/20 in the original poll and adding the one-fourth from 10/24
That swung the poll by 4 points.
Mathematically, the portions of the from the sample from 10/21 and 10/22, and 10/23 should be the same in both polls.
Therefore, we can conclude that either (a) Clinton did 16points worse on 10/24; or the polls are complete BS.
This is a simple mathematical argument.

To put it another way, pick four numbers (a, b, c, and d) such that the average is 12. Then take b, c, d, and pick a new number e such that the average is 8. There is no way to do this without making a 16 greater than e.

dreams said...

I think Trump's going to win but maybe the crooked Dems and the crooked media know that they've already got it stolen, we'll see.

traditionalguy said...

That morning was a new morning in Georgia. The Talmadge Machine had lost afternoon a long rule in one party racist fashion for 60 years. He was an Old Time southern Democrat and as corrupt as the Arkansas way still in use by the Clintons, but his cash went into
a raincoat instead of a charitable foundation .

machine said...

maybe you should ask Karl Rove what his numbers are...

Tyrone Slothrop said...

I was living in Kodiak in 1980, which at the time was EST -5 hours. By the time I got off work and made it to the polls, Carter had already conceded, and I say thank God because I was going to vote for him but voted Libertarian instead.

Bob Ellison said...

Gallup is not polling the 2016 presidential election.

The sampling methods seem mostly to be greatly massaged groups of what amount to something like 250 voters per poll. Pollsters like to tell you that that's a good number from which you can glean the likely results of 60m voters.

The sampling method does not work with cell phones, nor with people who refuse to answer polls.

As the Professor pointed out in a previous post, one of the big-time, A+ pollsters showed an 11-point swing in 7 days. If Al Roker did that, he'd be laughed out of the meteorology room at NBC.

Pollsters are in business to make money, of course. They would like everyone to think their methods are scientific and trustworthy, and worth the money.

This is not science. It's not even much of an art. Someone's gonna come out of this looking great, and others are gonna come out looking foolish.

Big Mike said...

Regarding The Reagan inauguration and release of the hostages, I've always assumed that a conversation something along the lines of the following in some quasi-neutral place like Switzerland ...

American diplomat: "That stupid cowboy Reagan won the election. There's no telling what he'll do once he's sworn in."

Iranian diplomat: "Well surely he wouldn't ..."

"Once he's sworn in that bastard cowboy can do anything he wants."

"Anything?"

"Any. Damned. Thing. He. Wants. To."

"Excuse me. In the name of Allah the most merciful I have a phone call to make."

MaxedOutMama said...

Michael K - yes, Reagan was more like a Democrat than most modern Democrats. Reagan's Dem roots were a large part of what made him a popular president - and all those who currently consider him the Saint of Conservatism seem unable to see that.

Thorley Winston said...

This chart of poll averages in the 1980 presidential election seems to show that most polls had Reagan ahead since about June. There are a couple of outliers but the overall polls seem consistently favorable for Reagan. Trump in 2016, not so much.

wholelottasplainin' said...

MaxedOutMama, JFK himself sounded more like a Democrat than today's Dems:

"A rising tide lifts all boats", explaining his tax cuts.

"Ask not what your country can do for you....."

ANY and ALL of those would be jeered at today's Dems.


Robert Cook said...

"...but then they decided that there was a dirty "October Surprise" consisting of George Bush going overseas to Iran (or France or somewhere) to beg/pay them to not release the hostages."

The October Surprise conspiracy, of course, was true. What? Do you think the hostages were released on the very day of Reagan's inauguration simply by coincidence? Or because the Iranians were trembling in fear of what Reagan would do, (as per Big Mike's seriously silly supposition above)? It is to laugh.

Drago said...

Robert Cook dives once more into the lunacy swamp!

Well played comrade! Own that bit of insanity! You have nothing to lose but your remaining credibility. Oops, too late!

Next up from cookie: Alger Hiss was innocent! Castro never ordered homosexuals lobotomized! Ethel Rosenberg was innocent! Elia Kazan did not deserve an Oscar! Ho Chi Minh was just like George Washington! Tail Wind!!!

Lol

mockturtle said...

The sampling method does not work with cell phones, nor with people who refuse to answer polls.

This would include me. Only a cell phone and I didn't answer polls when I had a land line. What kinds of people would tell a total stranger their income level?

Static Ping said...

Blogger CJinPA said... Gallup had Reagan down 8 and then up 3. Isn't that close to polls you're citing?

The Wikipedia article appears to be Gallup only. There is always a chance that the numbers were entered wrong given that it is Wikipedia in particular and lots of numbers in general.

Unknown said...

Usual margin is +/- 3%, so down 8 is supposed to mean something, while up 3 is the same as tied.

Original Mike said...

"The October Surprise conspiracy, of course, was true."

And the only evidence you have of this is it makes sense to you?

Bob Ellison said...

In the last four hours, I have received two separate text messages on my cell phone from two phone numbers: "Hi, Bob! This is Laurel from MoveOn.org!" "Hi, Bob! This is Malcom from MoveOn.org!" Both asking for money and volunteer work.

I have no connection to MoveOn whatsoever. I've been to their web site, just to lurk. I pretty much don't sign up for anything. Even my phone doesn't know my address. My phone barely knows my phone number. How are they doing this? Easy: by spamming every number the computer spits out. Maybe you just spam every possible number, but you'd do better to buy a list. From whom could they buy the numbers? Maybe from my electric company, or Verizon, or someone like that. Why are they doing this? Because they know they'll get away with it, and a few idiots will click through.

This costs money, sending texts and receiving them. I suspect this activity is illegal. Maybe it's a phish.

It would be pretty cheap, though, if you're George Soros, to set up a system to text every phone number in the land (that would be only 10,000,000,000 numbers, most of which simply won't go through and so won't cost a penny) and text them en masse.

It's gonna get worse.

cubanbob said...

MaxedOutMama said...
Michael K - yes, Reagan was more like a Democrat than most modern Democrats. Reagan's Dem roots were a large part of what made him a popular president - and all those who currently consider him the Saint of Conservatism seem unable to see that. "

Reagan cut my taxes big league! That's all the Conservatism I need.

C Stanley said...

I think the polling models are probably unable to handle the huge shifts in affiliation and in likelihood of voting, so there are likely to be surprises.

Bob Ellison said...

mockturtle asked, "What kinds of people would tell a total stranger their income level?"

What kind of pollster would believe the pollee's answer over the phone?

readering said...

It's 2012 all over again.

Cacimbo Cacimbo said...

@ Matt @ Thorley
This is a link to the site that put together the poll you both cite. Note that it states "I’ve supplemented their data with some late private polls conducted by the two campaigns, which are available in this paper by Warren Mitofsky." Without consulting the paper there is no way to know how many or which polls that were not available to media he included. There are plenty of polls outside the averages. Bottom line this graph tells us nothing about what polls the media actually based their reporting on.

Static Ping said...

Looking at Gallup's web page, it appears that the -6 and then +3 are the real Gallup numbers among likely voters. Then on another Gallup page it has -8 (among registered voters) and -3 (among likely voters). I'm not sure where the -3 is coming from as it does not match any of the Wikipedia numbers unless that -4 becomes -3 when considering rounding.

The "myth" that Reagan had a big lead heading into the debate is based upon poll averaging after the fact. This may be the correct way to evaluate polls, but it was not how anyone at the time was treating as such. If Gallup said you were losing badly, you were losing. To say it was a "myth" is perhaps true based on what we know now, but it is most certainly not a "myth" to the general public and the media in 1980, as the media's reactions attest.

Goldenpause said...

Back in 1980 I worked for a major metropolitan newspaper which had assigned a very good reporter full-time to analyze the polls. I asked her the Friday before election day who was going to win the Presidential election and she told me that, based on her analysis of all the polls, she didn't know. Four days later Carter lost decisively.

Original Mike said...

"What kinds of people would tell a total stranger their income level?"

I've actually been called by several polls (though not lately). I won't answer that question.

Matt said...

Fabi said...

"Gallop was the only credible polling outfit at the time. Matt is trying to re-write history."

The other polls showed Reagan AHEAD for TWO months before the election. Gallup showed Reagan BEHIND a week before the election. It sure is convenient to write history based on what you think is 'credible' when it was very evident Reagan would win in all other polls. Good grief. You guys are just writing your own mythological narrative.

I don't have a crystal ball but I can clearly see that polls show Clinton ahead nationally and state by state where she needs to be ahead to win. And she has been ahead for a while now. You are free to say polling is not accurate or is rigged [or whatever] but you can't then turn around and look at ONE poll in Florida and shout Eureka! Don't count your chickens based on one poll.

Mike said...

The October Surprise conspiracy, of course, was true. What? Do you think the hostages were released on the very day of Reagan's inauguration simply by coincidence?

Assuming you're correct, how would the future release of hostages benefit Reagan in October and November?

Cacimbo Cacimbo said...

Forgot to include link to graph maker:

http://themonkeycage.org/2012/08/what-really-happened-in-the-1980-presidential-campaign/

FullMoon said...

Robert Cook said... [hush]​[hide comment]

"...but then they decided that there was a dirty "October Surprise" consisting of George Bush going overseas to Iran (or France or somewhere) to beg/pay them to not release the hostages."

The October Surprise conspiracy, of course, was true. What? Do you think the hostages were released on the very day of Reagan's inauguration simply by coincidence? Or because the Iranians were trembling in fear of what Reagan would do, (as per Big Mike's seriously silly supposition above)? It is to laugh.

The release of hostages was one last FUCK YOU to Carter, and a "can't we all get along" message to Reagan. Kinda funny since Carter fucked the Shah and let the crazies back in.

Original Mike said...

"Assuming you're correct, how would the future release of hostages benefit Reagan in October and November?"

Can't wait to hear Robert's reply.

Fabi said...

I haven't shouted "eureka" about anything, Matt. Any other straw men you need to burn?

Please name the other well known and quoted pollsters from the eighties. I'll wait right here.

madAsHell said...

Egad. Faulty polls.

This is an excerpt from David Brinkley's obituary....

During NBC's election-night coverage in 1980, states going for Ronald Reagan were marked in blue on the network's map, those for Jimmy Carter in red.

"I remember him looking over his shoulder and saying, `My God, the country looks like a big, blue, suburban swimming pool,'" recalled Lester Crystal, an NBC producer at the time who now is executive producer of PBS' "The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer."


That was back when Republicans were blue, and Democrats were red. I don't know when this changed!!

Matt said...

Bob Ellison

"A+ pollsters showed an 11-point swing in 7 days."

Not true Bob. You are reading TWO unrelated polls and making up an 11 point swing. Here are the facts. The Bloomberg poll [which is Selzer & Co] that showed Clinton up by 9 was a NATIONAL poll. The poll today that shows Trump up by 2 is a FLORIDA only poll. So there is no such 11 point swing. The only way to get accurate data about a 'swing' is to compare the last Selzer & Co poll in Florida with the recent poll in Florida. Looking this up I found that the last poll Selzer & Co did in Florida was in September and the Bloomberg headline about the poll said "Trump...Leads in Florida". So that means according to the poll Trump was leading in September and he is leading now. That means no swing. That means Selzer & Co is consistent and possibly still A+. Unless the data is wrong and Clinton wins Florida [as other polls say]. Then we can say they are a C+ poll.

Static Ping said...

Matt: It sure is convenient to write history based on what you think is 'credible' when it was very evident Reagan would win in all other polls.

It does matter what people in 1980 thought was credible. The gold standard was Gallup. The rest of the polls were afterthoughts or, in some cases, unavailable to the public. The narrative of 1980 that Reagan was down badly in the polls and then suddenly won a landslide is accurate to the perception of the time.

You can certainly argue that the people of 1980 were wrong in their analysis. However,
Gallup's final poll was very accurate in 1960, 1968, 1972, and 1976, and would go on to be dead on in 1984. 1964 was off, but that was Goldwater getting destroyed so a few points was irrelevant. There was good reason to trust Gallup.

FullMoon said...

One thing seemingly in common with Carter/Reagan is the amount of unhappiness, distress, and anger throughout the country.

Bob Ellison said...

Matt, yeah, that looks correct.

mockturtle said...

That was back when Republicans were blue, and Democrats were red. I don't know when this changed!

Me either. Seems like the Dems should be red, because, you know.....

Michael K said...

"Do you think the hostages were released on the very day of Reagan's inauguration simply by coincidence? "

No, of course not ! Full Moon is trying to tell you why.

The mullahs hated and despised Carter. This was the "fuck you" that Trump will be to the Establishment on November 9.

Carter deserved every bit of it. The Joint Chiefs wanted to take out Kharg Island and leave Iran with no way to export oil. Carter vetoed it.

Matt said...

Fabi

"Please name the other well known and quoted pollsters from the eighties. I'll wait right here."

Are you still waiting? Here are some links to actual newspaper articles written in 1980. Note they say Reagan was leading.

This one was on Oct 9 and says Reagan had a comfortable lead in AP-NBC polls.
https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1734&dat=19801009&id=XTkeAAAAIBAJ&sjid=xb4EAAAAIBAJ&pg=5878,1027874

This one from UPI says: Edge Still With Reagan: [He had a 5 point lead and notes the Gallup poll showed Reagan leading 47 to 44!]
https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=2002&dat=19801103&id=cVkuAAAAIBAJ&sjid=1dkFAAAAIBAJ&pg=4963,626540

This one says Reagan leads in Electoral Survey.
https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1755&dat=19801102&id=la0cAAAAIBAJ&sjid=2WcEAAAAIBAJ&pg=4946,387299

Want more?

FullMoon said...

Matt said...

Fabi

"Please name the other well known and quoted pollsters from the eighties. I'll wait right here."

Are you still waiting? Here are some links to actual newspaper articles written in 1980. Note they say Reagan was leading.

This one was on Oct 9 and says Reagan had a comfortable lead in AP-NBC polls.
https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1734&dat=19801009&id=XTkeAAAAIBAJ&sjid=xb4EAAAAIBAJ&pg=5878,1027874

This one from UPI says: Edge Still With Reagan: [He had a 5 point lead and notes the Gallup poll showed Reagan leading 47 to 44!]
https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=2002&dat=19801103&id=cVkuAAAAIBAJ&sjid=1dkFAAAAIBAJ&pg=4963,626540

This one says Reagan leads in Electoral Survey.
https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1755&dat=19801102&id=la0cAAAAIBAJ&sjid=2WcEAAAAIBAJ&pg=4946,387299

Want more?

Just one that works would be nice

Drago said...

The best part of the lunatic left, like cookie, claiming the Reagan October Surprise fantasy was true is that it required GHWBush to hop an SR-71 while Jimmah was President and Commander in Chief and "secretly" fly this large leaky heavily maintained spy plane to Paris for "secret" talks and then zip on home!

Once you've gone that far around the bend like our resident Stalinist, why stop there?

Why not just claim that HW rode an Atlas rocket to Paris and was saved at the last minute by aliens?

Why not? It's just as believable.

Thanks cookie. We all needed a good laugh this evening. Especially the Cubs fans.

Fabi said...

News departments are pollsters, Matt? Keep digging.

Matt said...

Static Ping said...
"It does matter what people in 1980 thought was credible."

So suddenly your an expert on what all people in America thought was credible polling in 1980? Do you believe this based on experience or what you read from some blogger or Rush Limbaugh?

Tell me this, if you saw an article [link below] that said: The AP-NBC poll showed 42% of likely voters favored Reagan, 33% favored Carter [with a margin of error 4%] would you shrug and say, "Well that poll must be wrong because it's not Gallup!". Come on, man. Did people in 1980 walk around with "Gallup poll is the only truth!" tattooed onto their arms?

https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1734&dat=19801009&id=XTkeAAAAIBAJ&sjid=xb4EAAAAIBAJ&pg=5878,1027874

Big Mike said...

Cookie thinks I'm "seriously silly"? Takes one to know one!

Fabi said...

Gallop is the only pollster I remember up until about ten or fifteen years ago -- they were certainly the gold standard for the media.

Big Mike said...

(But I think my scenario is vastly more probable than stuffing Bush I into an SR-71.)

Matt said...

Fabi

"News departments are pollsters, Matt? Keep digging."

Are you kidding me? LOL. I just demolished your naiveté and you act like I provided made-up links. Go get a degree in something other than 14-year-old smart-*ss quips. YES, other polls existed. You are likely not old enough to know. And note, actually, the Gallup polls showed Reagan and Carter going back and forth throughout August, September and October. Too many here live in a myopic bubble that is so thick that even news that showed Reagan AHEAD in 1980 was too much for you to believe because - even though you loved Reagan - it tarnishes the myth that he magically came back from the dead to win. As an aside I remember the 1980 election. It was pretty clear Reagan was going to win - as the links I provided [which you didn't bother to read] proved.

Good grief. I'm done here. Back to reality.

Cacimbo Cacimbo said...

@Matt
You link to three article in papers from NC, PA and FL. Has anyone from outside PA every heard of the Beaver County Times? How about articles from NYTimes or DC papers? How do you account for the conversation between Brokaw and Brinkley as reported by Gerry?

Molly said...

I remember the shock of the 80 election being that there was a 12 seat swing in the Senate -- Dems up 58-41 before, Rep up 53-46 after (I know these don't add to 100, and I don't recall why the missing Senator). Rep took control of a Hill chamber for the first time since 1954 (and I think that 1954 was a one or two term aberration with Dem control going back to the 30s or beyond. That's what I don't think anyone anticipated. And the size of the Reagan win (no doubt related to the Senate turnover) was a surprise, and the prevailing sense that Reagan entered office with a "mandate" -- strong Congressional support for his policy initiatives -- namely lowering tax rates.

eddie willers said...

"Well that poll must be wrong because it's not Gallup!". Come on, man. Did people in 1980 walk around with "Gallup poll is the only truth!"

Yes....and everybody here who were of voting age at that time has told you so.

The only other pollster from that time I can remember was Harris. And that was like Nielsen vs. Arbitron.

Didn't matter what Arbitron said, if your ratings were bad on Nielsen, your show was gone.

CJinPA said...

Amazing this conversation is still going on. And folks believing the October Surprise conspiracy is adorable.

Personally, I'm not going to get tricked by the "the polls are wrong" thing again like I was in 2012. Not again.

I'll just note that there MAY be some hidden Trump support on the part of people afraid to admit support. But that's it. I'll hope for the GOP to be withing striking distance on election day and hope the hidden support covers the rest.

Original Mike said...

Just got back. Robert is still cooking up his explanation as to how Reagan stood to benefit from the hostage release in January? It's going to be a doozy. Don't make us wait much longer, Robert.

Fabi said...

Thank you, Cacimbo Cacimbo -- you captured my intended reply to Matt perfectly. I see now that he's declared victory and gone home, but he's calling me 14. Lulz

Matt said...

Cacimbo Cacimbo

The articles were not WRITTEN by the Beaver Times and small town papers! They were written by AP and UPI and printed in the smaller papers. Do you understand the way news used to work? The AP and UPI dispatch stories over the wire that got picked up by many newspapers in America. Why not go in search yourself for the NY Times?

I cannot account for Brinkley's conversation except to say the election was simply expected to be close. But you want to believe the polls showed Carter way ahead. They did not.

Static Ping said...

Matt: Tell me this, if you saw an article [link below] that said: The AP-NBC poll showed 42% of likely voters favored Reagan, 33% favored Carter [with a margin of error 4%] would you shrug and say, "Well that poll must be wrong because it's not Gallup!". Come on, man. Did people in 1980 walk around with "Gallup poll is the only truth!" tattooed onto their arms?

More or less, yes. Keep in mind that Gallup had a reputation for accuracy when it came to Presidential polls. They were the first organization to provide Presidential election polls without bias. Why wouldn't you trust them? They had always done a good job for decades. The election results surprised a lot of people, especially the media, as is well documented. Reagan winning 44 states with a 10% popular vote edge against an incumbent president should be surprising.

If you read the article in the Sarasota paper, which was published two days before the election, you will note the quote "Although nationwide opinion polls point towards a close popular vote..." and the opinion of several persons expressing the possibility of one candidate winning the electoral college and the other the popular vote. It was not even close.

Matt said...

eddie willers

"The only other pollster from that time I can remember was Harris. And that was like Nielsen vs. Arbitron."

Well you would be mostly wrong about the validity of Harris. They were very accurate in 1980.

This from the Christian Science Monitor:

>>Louis Harris: the pollster who was right and why
By Clayton Jones, Staff correspondent, November 6, 1980

New York — In the shadow of the presidential sweepstakes hung another contest of no little interest: Which pollster would most accurately forecast the voters' choice?
The winner: Louis Harris.
"My neck was out by a mile," said the New York-based pollster in a celebration party in his office election night. "I was the only pollster to say that Ronald Reagan would win."

...Louis Harris, working late into the night before the election day, went on ABC News on the morning of Nov. 4 to boldly predict a Reagan win by at least five points, with a possibility of a 9 percent lead over Carter.<<

Feel free to read the rest of the article – if you care...
http://www.csmonitor.com/1980/1106/110648.html

mockturtle said...

I, for one, refuse to believe that the magnificent SR-71 Blackbird may have been abused in such a manner.

Original Mike said...

Brave Sir Robert ran away
Bravely ran away, away

When logic reared its ugly head
He bravely turned his tail and fled

narciso said...

the thing about 1980, is despite some favorable polling, the networks were still caught off guard, somewhat like the bbc was during brexit,

Terry said...

House Republicans are already preparing for ‘years’ of investigations of Clinton
http://wapo.st/2eMbaWm
Fer God's sake, GOP, just stop it. Stop it.
If she wins, you'll approve any left wing lunatic to any she wants to appoint, but you are going to investigate her email. Or Bengazi. Stop it. You aren't fooling anyone.

Robert Cook said...

"Just got back. Robert is still cooking up his explanation as to how Reagan stood to benefit from the hostage release in January? It's going to be a doozy. Don't make us wait much longer, Robert."

Hey, I just got back, too. I have a life outside of this place, lemme tell ya. Anyway, if you're truly interested in reading about the October Surprise, you can find it easily enough. If you're not, you won't seriously consider it even if I spoon-feed it to you. I almost linked to some sources earlier, but I thought, "Why bother? These yahoos deny reality everyday!" I don't feel any compulsion to prove to you why I accept the October Surprise as fact, and I couldn't give a shit if you think I'm a kook for accepting it.

Original Mike said...

Just give us the Cliff Notes, Robert. How does Reagan enhance his election chances by striking a deal to have the hostages released in January?

Robert Cook said...

"The best part of the lunatic left, like cookie, claiming the Reagan October Surprise fantasy was true is that it required GHWBush to hop an SR-71 while Jimmah was President and Commander in Chief and "secretly" fly this large leaky heavily maintained spy plane to Paris for "secret" talks and then zip on home!"

I didn't say George Bush necessarily was at a certain place in person, or at a certain time. The October Surprise doesn't require Bush to have been physically in a certain place at a certain time. He may have been at a certain place at a different time than supposed. William Casey was also involved. Again, those with the slightest inclination to consider it seriously can easily find reporting on the matter. I mean, it's not as if our government doesn't involve itself in schemes and covert operations of illegal nature all the time.

Original Mike said...

Not asking for evidence, just the motivation. What did Reagan have to gain?

Robert Cook said...

"Just give us the Cliff Notes, Robert. How does Reagan enhance his election chances by striking a deal to have the hostages released in January?"

It's elementary, Sherlock: It wasn't so much about having them freed in January, but about having them NOT freed before the election. IF Carter had succeeded in freeing the hostages, it would have been a great boon to his reputation and popularity, possibly enough to give him victory over Reagan. By failing to free the hostages, Carter went into the election perceived as a failure, a loser, someone who couldn't bring our people home. By default, this means people looked to Reagan to be the preferred choice to be the president.

narciso said...

ah the consortium still chasing squirrels, how about Bani Sadr, having defamed the shah enough to foreign press, that khomeini took power, he still managed to squirrel his way to paris, and not suffer the fate of shapour baktiar,

Original Mike said...

OK, so if the Iranians wanted to give them to Carter, Reagan had to offer them something to get them to hold off. What did he offer?

MaxedOutMama said...

RE: The running battle over 1980 polls. I remember that election pretty well, being 55 now. And what I remember about it was that media constantly presented Carter as the obvious winner, and the only polls I ever remember being discussed were Gallup polls.

So what I remember is that the media were talking about Reagan's defeat, but that most people I knew seemed sure that Reagan was going to win. There was this huge disconnect there. The announcers did seem shocked, even astounded, by the returns on election night. Also dismayed, traumatized, depressed, and even angry.

However, the polls that were and are most consistently accurate were the grammar school polls, like Weekly Reader, and Reagan won that. So I think the media was existing in a bubble that year.

Although the Weekly Reader poll is no more, Scholastic has Clinton winning in a landslide. It may well prove to be the most accurate one. The Scholastic Election had Clinton 52% & Trump 35%. Obama was only 51% with Romney at 45%. Of course young school children demographics are diverging very rapidly from voting demographics, so you can argue it either way.

Fen said...


Cook: It's elementary, Sherlock: It wasn't so much about having them freed in January -

Also, fire doesn't melt steel....

mockturtle said...

Cookie, I've got to hand it to you. You take a lot of abuse on this blog but you hang tough just the same. While I nearly always disagree with you, I'm glad you're here. :-)

Robert Cook said...

The promise of weapons sales.

I'm out now, STRANGER THINGS is calling.

Terry said...

I was around in 1980. The first vote I ever cast for a presidential candidate was for Ronald Reagan on November 4, 1980.
This is why Carter lost:

On April 24, 1980, an ill-fated military operation to rescue the 52 American hostages held in Tehran ends with eight U.S. servicemen dead and no hostages rescued.

With the Iran Hostage Crisis stretching into its sixth month and all diplomatic appeals to the Iranian government ending in failure, President Jimmy Carter ordered the military mission as a last ditch attempt to save the hostages. During the operation, three of eight helicopters failed, crippling the crucial airborne plans. The mission was then canceled at the staging area in Iran, but during the withdrawal one of the retreating helicopters collided with one of six C-130 transport planes, killing eight soldiers and injuring five. The next day, a somber Jimmy Carter gave a press conference in which he took full responsibility for the tragedy. The hostages were not released for another 270 days.

http://www.history.com/this-day-in-history/hostage-rescue-mission-ends-in-disaster
The servicemen didn't die trying to rescue the hostages, they died trying to get away after failing to rescue the hostages. What a miserable f*cking excuse for the 'leader of the free world.' Carter was such poor, weak candidate, that Teddy Kennedy, drunk and murderer, almost took the nomination from him.

Terry said...

Hey, Robert Cook, how was Reagan's deal with the Iranians different than Obama's deal with the Iranians? In both cases, the executive branch assumed that it was free to spend taxpayer money without consulting congress.

Drago said...

There simply aren't enough sharks in the world for cookie to jump over.

Oh, and let's recall that cookie vehemently defended the honor of the Soviet Union by claiming they never funded "anti-war", anti-US, anti-western groups in the West.

Lol

Good old cookie. And just when you thought we had run out of unreconstructed Marxist useful idiots!

narciso said...

of course they did and they had assets in the plo, like abu mazen, and the opposite number in the israeli knesset, mr granot, one might say the late ted kennedy was a mere fellow traveler around 1983-4, the tower committee revealed he along with general haig were running back channels to the mullahs,

Robert Cook said...

"Oh, and let's recall that cookie vehemently defended the honor of the Soviet Union by claiming they never funded "anti-war", anti-US, anti-western groups in the West."

When did I ever say anything like that? You have me confused with someone else.

Original Mike said...

Thanks for your answers, Robert.

grackle said...

OK, so if the Iranians wanted to give them to Carter, Reagan had to offer them something to get them to hold off. What did he offer?

Give them to Carter? The mullahs of Iran wouldn’t give Carter the sweat off their balls. Reagan offered nothing other than to bomb the hell out of them. They knew their hostage game was up when Reagan was sworn in. The fun times were over and they couldn’t get the hostages out of Tehran fast enough. Strong leadership and a willingness to fuck them up was all that was ever really needed to get the hostages back, two characteristics Carter never possessed.

The weak-willed and timid shall be swept away.

#NeverDownBallot

Michael K said...

By failing to free the hostages, Carter went into the election perceived as a failure, a loser, someone who couldn't bring our people home.

That's a fair point but I don't think the Iranians thought that way. They hated Carter and the Shah.

They were dismissive of Carter. Reagan was an unknown with some fear factor from Democrats who said he might blow up the world.

cubanbob said...

All of this 1980 and 80's talk is making me nostalgic for the good old Cold War days. Thanks to Obama and Hillary they will be coming soon to a theater near you except this time we may not be the winners.

Terry said...

"Post hoc ergo propter hoc" fallacy.
The Iranians released the hostages on Reagans's inauguration day (post hoc) because (ergo) they wanted Carter to lose the election on November 4th (propter hoc).
So, if the theory is true, they might as well have released the hostages on November 5th. But they didn't. They waited, instead, until Reagan was given all the power of the commander in chief of the United States' armed forces.
After November 4th, Carter could have gotten the hostages back by threatening to bring down the Mullahs by destroying their army, air force, and navy. He did not. He knew the Iranians wouldn't believe him. He was a weak, weak man.

Terry said...

Cubanbob said...
All of this 1980 and 80's talk is making me nostalgic for the good old Cold War days. Thanks to Obama and Hillary they will be coming soon to a theater near you except this time we may not be the winners.

That was a frikkin' miracle. After literally decades of legitimate fear of World War Three and The Bomb, the Soviet Union collapsed from its own internal contradictions and the laws of economics and history. No shots were fired. The Marxists who managed every aspect of the government and economy of the USSR thought that they, and only they, understood how history and economics worked. Communism was actually a death cult, dreamed up by power-hungry sons and daughters of the bourgeois, just like J. Edgar Hoover said it was.
It was more than ironic. It should have been taught in every public school and university history class that the Marxists WERE FUNDAMENTALLY WRONG ABOUT THE ONE THING THEY CLAIMED TO KNOW MORE ABOUT THAN THE CAPITALISTS. Wrong. Miserably wrong. Couldn't have been more wrong. The Russia of today is authoritarian because of the frikkin' commies. The Russia of 1914 was reforming and intent on becoming a modern, mainstream, liberal European nation. The commies put an end to that.

Bricap said...

This is a tweet from Nate Silver earlier this evening:

"People spend **way** too much time litigating individual polls, when they should be thinking about the risk of systemic polling error."

I have read articles of his which talk about the increasing difficulty in contacting pollees, thereby making the pollster's job that much harder. He has also said that the potential systemic polling error could go in either direction, so he has fatter tails on his distribution curve.

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Yancey Ward said...

My theory is pretty simple- 95%+ of the people who end up casting a ballot already know by Labor Day who they are going to vote for, and nothing changes their minds short of the candidate being caught red-handed as a pedophile. So polls that show large swings-my definition of a large swing from one full cycle to the next is 6%+- are probably either run by morons or are run by people with a particular agenda more important than actually trying to be right. What changes after Labor Day isn't that the candidate gains or loses support in the opinion of the population, but rather changes in turnout.

In other words the voters don't change who they are going to vote for, they change the decision to vote at all. The most interesting poll being run this year is the LA Times poll- Clinton started with a significant lead, but Trump took a consistent lead mid-Summer that was only degraded and overcome for a time after the sex talk tape, but if you look at the internals, it was a loss of intensity in his supporters that was the major factor. Trump stopped the bleeding according to that poll with the last debate. Now, the original sample may have been skewed to his favor, but all else being equal, I doubt that would be the case considering who is running it.

As for the other polls, I don't really trust any of them any longer. The people paying for most of those polls have made it abundantly clear they want a Clinton victory. The only poll I would be worried about if I were Trump would be the FoxNews poll, and I am not even sure one can conclude the management at Fox (or even the WSJ for that matter) actually want to see Trump win. Outside of Rasmussen, I can't identify a single polling institution that might be Trump leaning.

This election is a lot different than the last two. Most of the same organizations wanted Obama to win with just as much intensity, but Obama was pretty consistently ahead in both elections and with pretty decent margins above 50%. Clinton has struggled to just get above 46%.

I still think Trump has a chance. I feel pretty confident that given the animosity from pretty much every media outlet except for FoxNews, polling is underestimating his support both intentionally and in the form of supporters who don't want to risk a confrontation with a pollster. Whether that amounts to enough to overcome the reported deficit he has is something we won't know until after the election, but I could easily see it being on the order of at least 3-5%. Also, I think he has a larger base of intense voters than does Clinton, though she might be able to compensate for that with a ground game and probably some outright fraud in some of the large cities. Also, the wrong track/right track polling is devastating to any candidate seen as the incumbent, which should favor Trump.

With all that written, my prediction is that Trump loses 48-47 and Johnson gets 2% and Stein gets 1%. Even with a narrow victory, Clinton will win all the same states Obama won 2012 with the possible exception of Ohio and Iowa- the Democrats just have a stronger electoral vote position with the addition of Virginia and Florida. I guess we will have an answer in 2 weeks time.

Hammond X. Gritzkofe said...

MaxedOutMama: "But, if one were to be honest, Trump is the closest thing to a Democrat in this election. The Clintons belong to their own party. They have never belonged to any other."

Well said.

Robert Cook said...

"Reagan offered nothing other than to bomb the hell out of them. They knew their hostage game was up when Reagan was sworn in."

Hahaha! In your Reagan-loving wet dreams.

Bay Area Guy said...

I'm sympathetic to folks nostalgic for the 1980 election and (fingers crossed) and hopeful for a similar outcome, polls be damned. Nobody loved Reagan more than me.

And, yes, much of the polling sucks this year, because the major news media hates Trump and is in bed with the Dems. So stipulated.

But, the elephant in the room is the demographic shifts in our country since 1980.

In 1980, the country was roughly 83% white, 11% black, 6% Hispanic.

In 2016, the country is roughly 72% white, 12% black, 16% Hispanc.

This shift is what caused California to flip from a reliably red state to an entrenched blue state.

The Left would love nothing more than to do the same thing to Texas, thereby ensuring an electoral college lock for the Dems.

If you are a Conservative, and still have qualms about voting Trump, you aren't thinking straight, and are about to get steamrolled.

Alas, given this demographic shift, I don't think even Reagan would do well in the current era.

Robert Cook said...

"'Post hoc ergo propter hoc' fallacy.
The Iranians released the hostages on Reagans's inauguration day (post hoc) because (ergo) they wanted Carter to lose the election on November 4th (propter hoc)."


This is more plausible than ridiculous notions of the Iranians fearing Reagan would obliterate them. They scorned Carter for having given the Shah sanctuary in America, rather then return him to Iran to face prosecution.

Reagan was far less inclined to precipitate and indiscriminate use of the military than our present-day criminals in the Bush-Cheney and Obama administrations. At the least, the Iranians would have waited until Reagan had settled into office and they could appraise his likelihood of using our military against them. And they always had the hostages as a trump card. That would have stopped any president from simply smashing into their country with guns blazing and bombs bursting. Available reporting on the matter satisfies me that, even if part of their motive was to insure Carter's loss, the Iranians were happy to deal with Reagan's people in order to make material gain from releasing the hostages beyond just pleasure at Carter's loss.

Christopher B said...

Yancey - excellent analysis, especially given what we're hearing from the Podesta emails via WikiLeaks about deliberate oversampling. I don't see how you can get the swings in opinion we've been seeing, or the wide disparity in polls (everything from +1 Trump to +12 Clinton in the same week of polling) assuming people are actually changing their minds about who to vote for. They are changing their answer about how likely they are to vote, or choosing to hang up rather than answer questions. I also agree that the result is going to be much much closer than most people imagine at this point. I'm maybe a bit more cautiously optimistic about Trump than you are. Even the diehard Clinton feminist in our office who calls Trump a sociopath will admit that she doesn't find Clinton very likeable. WikiLeaks is going to start breaking through at least a bit (self-preservation on the part of reporters if nothing else), and I don't see what else Hillary has that would drive Trump's numbers down.

mikee said...

Texas Hispanics are generally not as socialist as the Californian immigrants. I expect them to swing Republican over time.

I don't know if that is because in California you go right from Tijuana into San Diego across the border, complete with state benefits, whereas in Texas you go from Juarez to 500 miles from anywhere but El Paso, or if the long history of undocumented workers coming and going in Texas leads to more self-responsible immigrants, but if you want to see a future Republican, pick up a day laborer for some work and ask their opinion of the street beggar on the corner. Guys who will, and do, live 6 to a room sleeping on floors to send money home to their families generally don't approve of deadbeats getting handouts.

narciso said...

actually it was reasonable conjecture on the sepah's part, that's why they shifted to the proxy war, using the amal militia which became hezbollah,

William Chadwick said...

"Those three networks, you should have seen the long faces and all of the reporters that were at various campaign headquarter locations...."

The standard joke is that you could tell who won on Election Night by just tuning in Katie Couric the next day and seeing her facial expression.

mockturtle said...

Mikee correctly states: Texas Hispanics are generally not as socialist as the Californian immigrants.

This is largely true because there are so many old Hispanic families in Texas and they tend to vote Conservative-[ly].