the LYNCH report

The Power of Clear Insight

USA Today Poll Shows McCain in Lead; Article Says Otherwise…

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An article posted on USA Today’s website today shows some surprising poll results. Among them: those people polled who were likely to cast a ballot in November were more likely to vote for Mr. McCain, by a 49% to 45% margin. Among registered voters, however, it was Mr. Obama in the lead, enjoying the support of 47% of respondents vs. Mr. McCain’s 44%.

The same article shows graphs illustrating the poll’s results on various topics surveyed. The following topics appear under the heading, “Who would do a better job?:

Dealing with foreign leaders

The graph shows respondents picked Mr. McCain by a 52% to 37% margin (with a footnote indicating Mr. Obama’s result was “Based on a half sample, which has a margin of error of +/- 5 percentage points.” (No reason is given as to why a “half sample” was used in Mr. Obama’s case).

Relations with other countries

Again, the graph for Mr. McCain shows a majority support him in this context, this time by a 47% to 39% margin (once again with the “half sample” footnote for Mr. Obama).

The accompanying article, however, has this to say:

Majorities in the new poll said Obama would do a better job than McCain in dealing with foreign leaders and handling relations with other countries.

So which is it?

We’ve advised the editors of USA Today of the gaffe and await their reply. However in all likelihood, it’s the graphs which are incorrect. Here’s why: under the same heading, there’s the following topic:


The graphs for this one show Mr. Obama trouncing Mr. McCain 48% to 32%, which doesn’t seem right on the face of it – Mr. McCain, after all, long ago adopted the persona of “War Hero” and “Military Man”, and Mr. Obama is hardly seen as the “Anti-Terrorism Candidate”.

Stay tuned – we’ll update this post upon USA Today’s reply to our email or their correction of the article.

***UPDATE July 30***

USA Today finally updated the incorrect graphs:

USA Today finally got the graphs right - we didn't think Obama was leading the polls on the so-called "terrorism" issue...

That's better: USA Today finally got the graphs right - we didn't think Obama was leading the polls on the so-called "terrorism" issue...

Written by westcoastsuccess

July 28, 2008 at 9:10 pm

One Response

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  1. This article is more benefit for me. Hope you post more benefit article in the future. ++


    May 25, 2010 at 3:03 pm

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