It's Only a Draft: The prestigious Atlantic 's Chris Good--perhaps as exhausted by the magazine's time-consuming Corporate Lobbyist Moneysuck as prestigious Atlantic columnist Andrew Sullivan after a "marathon twelve-hour session of passion" -- lectures Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal for saying that polls show "the people don't want" the Democrats' health care reform:
... [T]he polling doesn't say Americans oppose Democratic reforms. At best, we can say it's a mixed picture. Of the most recent, reliable, non-partisan major polls --a Sept. 12 Washington Post/ABC survey, an Economist/YouGov survey released Sept. 15, and a Sept. 25 NY Times/CBS poll-- only the first shows Americans opposed to Democratic plans (48 percent to 52 percent); the other two show Americans in favor, though NY Times/CBS found that 46 percent say they don't know enough to decide. [E.A.]
The only problem with this paragraph is that in Good's highly selective survey of "the most recent, reliable" polls, he simply ignores the two YouGov polls taken after the Sept. 15 one he cites . Both showed a 51-49 majority opposed to health care reform. In other words, even if you ignore perfectly legit polls like NBC/ Wall Street Journal and Rasmussen and use only the three polls Good picks, his sentence should read:
Of the most recent, reliable, non-partisan major polls--a Sept. 12 Washington Post/ABC survey, an Economist/YouGov survey released Sept. 29, and a Sept. 25 NY Times/CBS poll-- two of the three show Americans opposed to Democratic plans. The only one showing even a plurality in favor is the wacky NY Times/CBS survey that managed to generate a 46 percent undecided number. [E.A.]
P.S.: Here's a handy page graphing recent polls for Good to bookmark in case he has to write about health care surveys again. It tends to support Jindal, if weakly. ... P.P.S.: This actually isn't a mistake you'd typically make if you set out afresh to look up the recent health care numbers. Maybe that's why I suspect someone fed Good this erroneous story, Dreidl style. Maybe someone he met at the prestigious First Draft of History conference! Who said it was a waste? [ Update : Good's choice of polls seems based on an item he wrote about the 'public option' back on 9/29 --ed. OK. But who fed him that, I ask you? Never explain by conspiracy what can be explained by laziness--ed Laziness is the Spoonfeeder's Friend!] ... 9:17 P.M.