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    Oct 25th, 2008


    A new poll sponsored by Minnesota Public Radio News and the University of Minnesota’s Hubert H. Humphrey Institute, released Friday, mirrors the results of the SurveyUSA poll released the previous day by KSTP-TV: Support for U.S. Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) is holding steady a week after she became a lightning rod for national criticism and media attention for saying on MSNBC’s “Hardball” last week that Barack Obama “may have anti-American views” and the media should investigate which members of Congress “are pro-America or anti-America.”

    The poll, conducted Oct. 21-23 on a sample of 430 likely voters showed Democratic challenger Elwyn Tinklenberg leading Republican incumbent Michele Bachmann 45 to 43 percent. Independence Party candidate Bob Anderson was at 5 percent, with 7 percent undecided in the poll, which had a 4.7 percentage-point margin of error.

    Larry Jacobs, director of the Humphrey Institute’s Center for the Study of Politics and Governance, said on MPR that the poll results show Bachmann is losing support even among Republicans, with about one-fifth of respondents supporting Norm Coleman and John McCain saying they’re not supporting Bachmann.

    Analysis

    The results confirm my analysis reported yesterday on this blog, that Rep. Michele Bachmann’s support has not ebbed in the wake of the “Hardball” imbroglio.

    Two partisan polls conducted a week before Bachmann’s “Hardball” appearance — Grove Insight  (Oct. 10-12) on behalf of Tinklenberg and Public Opinion Strategies (Oct. 12-13) for Bachmann — show Bachmann with a mean of 43 and Tinklenberg with a mean of 35.5.

    Two independent polls conducted in the week after Bachmann’s “Hardball” appearance — KSTP/SurveyUSA (Oct. 20-21) and MPR/UofM Humphrey Institute (Oct. 21-23) – show Bachmann with a mean of 43.5 and Tinklenberg with a mean of 46.

    The table below reports the data from five available polls and their descriptive statistics.

                                                                Bachmann Tinklenberg Anderson Undecided
    Grove Insight (Aug. 19-21)                        40            27                –                  –
    Grove Insight (Oct. 10-12)                         42            38                –                 15
    Public Opinion Strategies (Oct. 12-13)    44            33                8                  –
    “Hardball” interview (Oct. 17)
    SurveyUSA (Oct. 20-21)                            44             47                6                  2
    MPR/UofM (Oct. 21-23)                           43             45                5                  7
    Mean                                                            42.6           38              6.3              8.8
    Standard deviation                                     1.5            7.4              1.2              5.4

    In summary, inspection of the two pre- and two post-Hardball polls offer no evidence that Rep. Bachmann lost voter support as a result of the remarks she made on “Hardball” and the political firestorm that followed.

    What has changed is that Tinklenberg’s poll numbers advanced by double digits in a matter of days, most likely reflecting a combination of improved name recognition and movement in his direction by independent and undecided voters.

    My analysis of yesterday remains unchanged: Tinklenberg has reached the ceiling of voter support – high mid-40s – in the strongly Republican-leaning 6th District.

    ———

    IRAQ UPDATE

    Security Developments in Iraq

    Following are security developments in Iraq on Oct. 24, 2008 as reported by Reuters.

    KUT – A mortar bomb killed three children and wounded two others on Thursday when it landed on a house just east of Kut, 95 miles southeast of Baghdad, police said.

    NEAR TUZ KHURMATO – One Iraqi soldier was killed and two others were wounded when gunmen attacked a checkpoint near Tuz Khurmato, 105 miles north of Baghdad, police said. Three suspected militants were also killed.

    BAGHDAD – U.S. forces detained eight suspected militants during operations in central Iraq on Thursday and Friday, the U.S. military said.

    ———

    Iraqi Christians Flee Mosul After Death Threats


    October 24, 2008

    GENEVA – More than half of the Christians living in Mosul have fled the northern Iraqi city in the past two weeks, some going to Syria, after receiving death threats, the United Nations refugee agency said on Friday. …

    More than 2,200 Christian families — about 13,000 people — have sought refuge north and east of Mosul, or in nearby Iraqi regions including Dahuk, Arbil and Kirkuk. About 400 crossed into Syria for refuge there …

    Syria is already hosting at least 1.2 million Iraqis who have fled war and upheaval in their home country, which U.S.-led forces invaded in 2003.

    Full story

    ———

    Other headlines:

    Al-Qaida in Iraq’s leader says in a new audiotape his group is now focused on attacks outside Iraq (AP, Oct. 24, 2008)

    Americans show Iraqis how to spend money (AP, Oct. 24, 2008)

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    9 Responses to “Bachmann Steady Post-Hardball”
    1. Aubrey Immelman Says:

      Additional analysis

      A commentator recently noted, “Bachmann notoriously shot herself in the foot at a critical time before the election with her charges of ‘anti-Americans in government’ and Obama’s ‘anti-American views.’ That probably led to a wave of disgust with Bachmann among 6th District undecideds …”

      Upons closer examination, there’s no empirical support for that theory. Empirical data show that Bachmann’s poll numbers were at 44% the week before her anti-American rant on “Hardball” and remained at 44% the week after.

      In five polls conducted between Aug. 19 and Oct. 23, Bachmann’s poll numbers ranged from 40% to 44%, with a mean of 42.6 and a standard deviation of 1.5 (i.e., very stable).

      In the same five polls, Tinklenberg’s numbers ranged from 27% to 47%, with a mean of 38 and a standard deviation of 7.4 (i.e., very unstable).

      The extreme variability of Tinklenberg’s numbers can be accounted for by the Oct. 17 “Hardball” incident; from Oct. 13 to Oct. 21, Tinklenberg’s number skyrocketed from 33% to 47%.

      The attrition in Tinklenberg’s final poll number, from 47% just before the election to 43% on Election Day, can be accounted for by regression to the mean.

      The surge in Bachmann’s number from 43% in the final poll to 46% on Election Day can be accounted for by undecideds breaking for the incumbent candidate.

    2. Aubrey Immelman Says:

      Cross-posted from Politico Forums at http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0710/39649.html

      The table below reports data from all five publicly released polls in the 2008 election cycle. If the layout makes the table difficult to interpret, go to http://www.immelman.us/news/bachmann-steady-post-hardball/ for the original table.

      Bachmann Tinklenberg Anderson Undecided
      Grove Insight (Aug. 19-21) 40 27 – –
      Grove Insight (Oct. 10-12) 42 38 – 15
      Public Opinion Strategies (Oct. 12-13) 44 33 8 –
      Hardball interview (Oct. 17, 2008)
      SurveyUSA (Oct. 20-21) 44 47 6 2
      MPR/UofM (Oct. 21-23) 43 45 5 7
      Mean 42.6 38 6.3 8.8
      Standard deviation 1.5 7.4 1.2 5.4
      Actual election results 46 43 10

      In summary, inspection of the two pre- and two post-Hardball (Oct. 17) polls offers no evidence that Rep. Bachmann lost any voter support as a result of the “anti-America” remarks she made on Hardball and the political firestorm that followed.

      What changed is that Tinklenberg’s poll numbers advanced by double digits in a matter of days, most likely reflecting a combination of improved name recognition and movement in his direction by independent and undecided voters.

      Finally, Bachmann’s 48% in the current SurveyUSA poll is 4 percentage points higher than she received in any poll conducted in 2008, which indicates that she is running stronger than two years ago. Clark’s 39% is marginally better than Tinklenberg’s 33-38% prior to the Hardball incident (but less than his 45-47% post-Hardball polling). Anderson’s 6% is in the same range as the 5-8% he polled in 2008.

      In conclusion, if the election were held today, the outcome would be the same as in 2008, with a slightly higher margin of victory for Bachmann.

    3. Aubrey Immelman Says:

      Cross-posted from the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey Institute’s “Smart Politics” blog at http://blog.lib.umn.edu/cspg/smartpolitics/2010/07/inside_the_surveyusa_poll_of_m.php

      The earliest publicly available poll in 2008 was conducted in late August, so polls are being conducted unusually early this year.

      The table below reports data from all five publicly released polls in the 2008 election cycle. If the layout makes the table difficult to interpret, go to http://www.immelman.us/news/bachmann-steady-post-hardball/ for the original table.

      ———————————— Bachmann — Tinklenberg — Anderson — Undecided
      Grove Insight (Aug. 19-21) —— 40 —— 27 —— No data —— No data
      Grove Insight (Oct. 10-12) —— 42 —— 38 —— No data —— 15
      Public Opinion Strategies (Oct. 12-13) —— 44 —— 33 —— 8 —— No data
      SurveyUSA (Oct. 20-21) —— 44 —— 47 —— 6 —— 2
      MPR/UofM (Oct. 21-23) —— 43 —— 45 —— 5 —— 7
      Mean —— 42.6 —— 38 —— 6.3 —— 8.8
      Standard deviation —— 1.5 —— 7.4 —— 1.2 —— 5.4

      In summary, inspection of the two pre- and two post-Hardball (Oct. 17) polls offers no evidence that Rep. Bachmann lost any voter support as a result of the “anti-America” remarks she made on Hardball and the political firestorm that followed.

      What changed is that Tinklenberg’s poll numbers advanced by double digits in a matter of days, most likely reflecting a combination of improved name recognition and movement in his direction by independent and undecided voters.

      Finally, Bachmann’s 48% in the current SurveyUSA poll is 4 percentage points higher than she received in any poll conducted in 2008, which indicates that she is running stronger than two years ago. Clark’s 39% is marginally better than Tinklenberg’s 33-38% prior to the Hardball incident (but less than his 45-47 post-Hardball polling). Anderson’s 6% is in the same range as the 5-8% he polled in 2008.

      In conclusion, if the election were held today, the outcome would be the same as in 2008, with a slightly higher margin of victory for Bachmann.

      Posted by: Aubrey Immelman | July 14, 2010 1:06 PM

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      [...] Bachmann’s anti-American rant nearly cost her the election in a safe Republican district, not because she lost her base fundamentalist support — her pre/post-Hardball poll numbers remained steady in the mid-40s — but because it drove large numbers of undecided and politically unaffiliated voters to the Democratic Party ticket. [...]

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