Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll - A push poll? bias?

(Randy) #1

I’m curious if anyone has any background info on the reliability of this poll. After seeing it as the source for several polling questions that to me sound very push poll-ish, I googled it. Not sure I’m buying what they are selling.


Do you have a link to the poll? Maybe we can help you research it a bit. I wouldn’t look too hard at individual polls unless you’re researching a specific topic. Aggregate polling sites like FiveThirtyEight are all a casual political person really need, since they grade all the polls. Good luck!


Is this the poll you’re referring?

(Randy) #4

wow, yes that looks like all of them put together.


What makes you think this was a “push poll”? I’m curious.

(Matt Kiser) #6

i don’t think CAPS - Harris meets the definition of a push poll. perhaps you just don’t agree with what they found from surveying ~1,400 voters? i tend to believe polling is more art than science, so it’s best to just accept it as some kind of directional evidence – not gospel.

Some useful information about the poll:

Full poll results will be posted online later this week. The Harvard CAPS/Harris Poll survey is an online sample drawn from the Harris Panel and weighted to reflect known demographics. As a representative online sample, it does not report a probability confidence interval. (The Hill)

(M A Croft) #7

Exactly! And that goes for all polling.

I taught statistics at tertiary level a while back and began my career (too long ago to say :blush:) in the Research Branch of our Dept. of Statistics.

Looking at the published results so far - it seems to fall into line with a number of other published polls which are summarised on fivethirtyeight . I note with interest the strong support for Joe Biden as the Democratic Candidate for 2020. Is this nostalgia for the Obama era - or is it it more than that? As an interested onlooker I’m curious. We had a small discussion here in NZ on an online left site just the other day - many were hoping for a progressive candidate. I must say I like some of the policies that Elizabeth Warren has proposed wrt business taking into account worker rights etc. We could do with implementing some of that here. Incidentally there is a Bill going through our Parliament at the moment

The purpose of this bill is to encourage a focus on child poverty reduction, facilitate political accountability against published targets, require transparent reporting on child poverty levels, and create a greater commitment by Government to address child well-being.

This is being sponsored by our PM - we hope the opposition Parties will allso support it into Law.
BTW Matt, many thanks for your excellent and untiring work on this site. It is great work, and a huge benefit to many, not only in your country, but to all of us around the world who yearn for an equitable, peaceful, and sustainable future.


I started a 2020 thread, it must be time. Post your favorites so far!

(system) #9

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