Biden’s dangerous “poll advantage”

This is the biggest summer lead the presidential candidate has created since 1996. John Zogby, the moderator and senior pollster of Zogby poll, one of the mainstream pollsters, analyzed to China Newsweek that Biden’s high support rate can be maintained for several more weeks, but it is certain that it will be several weeks. However, Zogby, a supporter, also stressed that the media and the public need to be aware that opinion polls are only a snapshot of the situation at that time, not an accurate forecast of the future. Biden’s current lead in the polls does not mean that he can win the election. “The current gap in support is actually very dangerous and unstable.” For the 74 year old Zogby, this year is the seventh time he has run a US election poll. Zogby was a member of the public diplomacy Advisory Committee of the U.S. Congress and is now a senior adviser to the Kennedy School of government at Harvard University. He has conducted federal and state government opinion polls for 40 years. < / P > < p > “the methodology of the presidential election poll is the same as that of the general political poll, but it should be operated much more carefully, because the risk of presidential election poll is always high.” Zogby told China News Weekly that he was still a little nervous. The most recent example is the presidential election four years ago. Although pre election mainstream polls showed that presidential candidate Hillary Clinton had a 71% to 99% chance of winning, Republican candidate trump won. The following year, the American Association for the study of public opinion acknowledged in its report that this election has made public opinion question the general election poll, and people are worried that the current poll model has structural problems and can not truly reflect the public opinion of the United States. In theory, the poll of the US general election is scientific and true. They are combined with random telephone survey, family interview, fixed voter mail, online questionnaire and other ways. They follow the operation rules of aapor and calculate the weight of the samples with reference to historical data, and finally show the social and public opinion of the survey data collection. < / P > < p > “polls are not only science, but also art.” Zogby told China News Weekly that “excellent pollsters must be excellent social scientists, not just statisticians. We need to look at past polls like elections, capture demographic trends, and make informed judgments about the weights. ” However, there has always been a paradox in general election polls: in theory, to be closest to the actual voting results, we must be closest to the polls that collect data at the final voting time; in reality, polls can never really wait until the night before the vote, which means that some key variables will create a gap between the current poll and the actual election process. < / P > < p > in the 2020 general voter survey, a key variable is the turnout rate. At present, mainstream opinion polls refer to the use of historical voting rates. “Because of the high turnout in the primary elections of the two parties and the majority of the respondents also said that they would accept postal votes, our voting rate is at the normal level at present.” Zombie was revealed. However, with the superimposed influence of epidemic situation and political factors, the voting willingness of voters may change in the next three months, and the voting rate will develop in a direction unfavorable to trump. In May, California, the state with the largest number of voters, announced that it might complete the election by mail, after the new crown epidemic in Wisconsin was intensified by a gathering of bipartisan primaries. Since then, at least five state governments have begun to plan to mail ballots to all voters in the country. < p > < p > mailing ballots to all voters will allow minority voters with historically low turnout to vote more, and they are not trump’s ballot box. Trump and Republicans reacted fiercely, accusing it of increasing the risk of election fraud, and even “affecting the Republican election opportunities.”. In 2016, polls based on historical turnout ignored the bottom white voters who had been moved by trump to vote for the first time. This time, the poll may have overlooked minority voters who voted for the first time. However, the poll itself can also affect voters’ willingness to vote, and Biden’s danger alert has not been lifted. According to the aapor report, in the 2016 presidential election, a number of widely publicized state level polls showed that Hillary Clinton was “sure to win” in Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin. In the end, trump won all three states, and his total vote was only 0.56% more than Hillary Clinton. < / P > < p > “however well intentioned these predictions are, they help to establish the belief that Hillary Clinton will definitely be elected president, which reduces the motivation of some voters to vote.” Aapor report analysis. < / P > < p > in addition to the uncertain voting rate, Zogby pointed out that the current poll data are also affected by short-term factors. With headlines about Freud’s death and the death of civil rights leader Louis Lewis, voters tend to support a more politically correct position in the polls. Although the poll shows that Biden gained more American support after the riots caused by Freud’s death, another type of poll, the average presidential support rate, shows that Trump’s approval rating has been hovering around 41% from June to August, with no significant change. Unlike the election poll, which reflects the support rate of a candidate, a presidential poll refers to the support rate of a president during his term of office. According to this, the trump campaign team believes that some respondents choose different answers when facing different polls, thus reducing Trump’s support rate in the poll. “It’s a good campaign rhetoric,” Charles Franklin, author of the aapor report and professor of public policy at Marquette University, told China Newsweek. “We rarely see evidence of this, but it’s hard to prove that it doesn’t exist.” < / P > < p > in addition, short-term events can improve Biden’s poll support, but it can also make the data ebb quickly. In the May internal poll, more than 60% of Hispanics and more than 30% of African Americans expressed disappointment that Biden, a “white male”, had become a candidate. Michelle Obama was even more popular with minority voters than Biden. < p > < p > since June, when trump chose to threaten the use of military and police minority protests, mainstream polls showed that more than 60% of Hispanics and more than 70% of African Americans said they would vote for Biden. < / P > < p > “if there is no protest, African American voters’ support for Biden is not monolithic.” Diao Daming, an associate professor at the school of international relations at Renmin University of China, told China News Weekly that Biden still needs to elaborate his policy on ethnic minorities at the upcoming Congress in August, and even choose an African American woman as the vice presidential candidate to stabilize the hard won high support rate of ethnic minorities. Even if Biden can stabilize the support rate of ethnic minorities, there are still a lot of “unexploded bombs” around him. According to a poll, 38% of female voters believe Reid’s accusation and only 31% believe Biden’s denial in the face of former Senate assistant Tara Reid’s sexual assault charges. Zogby pointed out that according to historical experience, the “black swan incident” affecting voters’ choice may continue to appear, and all will not be revealed until the election day. < / P > < p > “people do change the way they vote on election day. In fact, as many as 14% of voters in the past told us that they made the final decision on the day of the election. ” Zogby told China Newsweek. Even if Biden’s national support rating is higher than Trump’s, it does not mean that Biden will win the presidential election. The president of the United States is not elected by universal suffrage of “one person, one vote”, but by a “electoral college” composed of 538 people according to the proportion of population in each state. < p > < p > except for Maine and Nebraska, the Electoral College of 48 states in the United States adopts the “winner take all” voting mode, which means that even if a candidate obtains a majority of votes by one vote in the state’s general election, all members of the electoral college in the state will vote for the candidate. “The key to the electoral system of the Electoral College of < / P >” is who wins the presidential election. ” Charles Franklin pointed out to China Newsweek. In the history of election, most states in the United States have long supported the candidates of fixed parties. However, in 18 “swing states”, they are anxious to compete with Republicans, and there is no candidate to win. The electoral votes of these states are related to the success or failure of the general election of both parties. < p > < p > in 2016, a survey of more than ten mainstream institutions showed that Hillary Clinton led trump by about 3% in the national support rate, and Hillary Clinton finally won the popular vote with 2%. But the overlooked data is that Hillary Clinton did not have an absolute lead in the “swing state” at that time. < p > < p > according to PCR, a mainstream pollster, the electoral college won only half of the “swing states”, six more than trump. It also means that as long as trump wins a “swing state” with poor opinion polls and six electoral votes, he can narrowly beat Hillary Clinton in the face of poor national support. < p > < p > in the end, trump won by a narrow margin in Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Florida, Arizona and North Carolina, the six “swing states” with dense population and large number of electoral votes, thus winning 304-227 electoral votes. As a result, the six states have become “the most critical battlefields in the 2020 election,” Franklin told China News Weekly. < / P > < p > at present, Biden’s “swing state” campaign is much more optimistic than Hillary Clinton in 2016. Biden is currently slightly ahead of trump in 16 of the “key six” states, according to the main poll averages of 18 swing states. If he can maintain that advantage in the general election, plus the electoral votes of the states he has always supported, he can win trump by 368 votes to 170 votes in the electoral college. However, poll expert NAT silver points out that Biden has only maintained a “safety advantage” in five of the leading 16 “swing states”, that is, the leading support rate in that state reaches or exceeds the national average of 9%. In the other “swing states”, his approval rating is not up to the national average, which means that “these states may fall to trump at any time before the election”. < / P > < p > at present, Biden needs at least another “security advantage” in Minnesota, Florida, New Hampshire and Nevada, which have relatively high support but not reaching the average, in order to ensure that he can win the election with more than half of the electoral votes, that is, 270 votes. Trump is obviously under more pressure than Biden. While Biden’s team needs to focus on four states, trump needs to win at least seven “swing states” that are currently lagging behind in the polls in order to get more than half of the voters. It is worth noting that state level polls themselves are not as accurate as national polls. “In 1996, when I presided over the presidential election,