A Consumer's Guide to the Polls
Read the ingredients before you buy.
Updated Thursday, Oct. 28, 2004, at 5:31 PM
Presses undecideds to pick a candidate: No, until a week before the election; yes, thereafter.
Average boost from pressing, last three samples:Unknown.
Disclosure of boost factor: Not published.
May weight your vote differently depending on your: Race, sex, age, or education, depending on census data, exit polls, and previous Zogby surveys.
Adjusts results to fit expected party shares of electorate: Yes.
Expected shares:39 percent Dem, 35 percent GOP. Zogby calculates party weights based on the last three elections and subtle adjustments for factors such as Hispanic population growth.
Correction, Oct. 29, 2004: We originally described the CBS/New York Times likely voter test as unspecified. The failure to specify it was ours. CBS News has published an exemplary description of its likely voter screening methods here. (Return to the corrected sentence._
Will Saletan covers science, technology, and politics for Slate and says a lot of things that get him in trouble.
David Kenner is a former Slate intern.
Louisa Thomas is on the editorial staff of The New Yorker.
Illustration by Mark Alan Stamaty.