Monday, June 20, 2011
Ron Paul and Straw Polls
The case of Ron Paul is a useful case for teaching the difference between straw polls and genuine random-sample surveys. There is a big gap between his performance at events such as CPAC and his standing in national polls. And as the campaign progresses, there will be phone-in and online "polls" showing him far ahead. As ABC News explained years ago, that's because his supporters are unusually motivated to participate in such non-scientific "surveys," rendering them useless as a measure of public opinion.