Why presidential primary polls are the fool’s gold of politics

Why presidential primary polls are the fool’s gold of politics
Credit: Jae C. Hong, AP Photo

With what seems like 3,247 candidates in the 2016 field, and the RNC/Fox News set to limit participation in the first officially sanctioned GOP presidential debate this week according to the Real Clear Politics polling average, now is as good a time as any for a refresher on just how foolish adhering to polls this early truly is.

Now, in fairness to the RNC/Fox, I don’t know how you do a substantive debate with this many candidates. Heck, last go around we were complaining that with eight or nine on the stage it was difficult to treat everyone fairly and make it worth the viewers’ time. However, with recent history as our guide it turns out attempting to draw any meaningful conclusions from presidential primary polls this far out is like mining for fool’s gold.

For example, perhaps we have forgotten the epic 2008 general election showdown between Rudy Giuliani and Hillary Clinton?

Continue reading →


Commenting Policy

We have no tolerance for comments containing violence, racism, vulgarity, profanity, all caps, or discourteous behavior. Thank you for partnering with us to maintain a courteous and useful public environment where we can engage in reasonable discourse.

You may use HTML in your comments. Feel free to review the full list of allowed HTML here.