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Tags: pollsters | georgia | election

Pollsters Mostly Sit Out Georgia Elections

voters line up for early coting in atlanta
Voters line up for the first day of early voting outside of the High Museum polling station on December 14, 2020 in Atlanta, Georgia. (Jessica McGowan/Getty Images)

Monday, 21 December 2020 11:53 AM

Pollsters have been sitting it out for the Jan. 5 Georgia elections, Politico reported. 

Campaigns and strategists are leaning more on absentee and early voting statistics along with detailed results from the November election, the news outlet reported.

“Should we just expect the Georgia polls to be right? I think that would be a little bit of a mistake,” said Democrat pollster Nick Gourevitch. “Everybody fundamentally understands that it’s going to become an issue of partisan turnout. And anybody who tells you they know exactly what’s going to happen in terms of partisan turnout in a special election with two senators to decide control of the Senate in a post-Trump era when he’s not on the [ballot] — nobody knows the answer to that question. It’s a completely unique situation.”

FiveThirtyEight has tracked 12 polls of both contests: Only two were conducted by pollsters the site gives better than a “B-” rating. In their averages, GOP Sens. David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler each lead by less than one percentage point.

According to Politico, part of the reason for the retreat of public pollsters in Georgia is timing — the final two weeks coincide with Christmas and New Year’s holidays when pollsters shy away from calling people on the phone.

"It does make it more difficult, no question," Robert Cahaly from the Trafalgar Group, an Atlanta-based firm, told Politico. "It is hard. It's also the campaigns. They're not competing with each other — they're competing with Santa Claus. They are literally competing with the Lexus ad with the big, red bow on the car."

The COVID-19 pandemic also complicates polling, according to Democrat pollster Brian Stryker of ALG Research.

“We saw these problems show up in North Dakota and South Dakota and Wisconsin and Iowa in the worst way,” Stryker told Politico, asserting there’s a connection between Democratic underperformance in states with high coronavirus rates. “Do they show up in Georgia? Do they skew the polling in Georgia to be more Democratic?”

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Politics
Pollsters have been sitting it out for the Jan. 5 Georgia elections, Politico reported. Campaigns and strategists are leaning more on absentee and early voting statistics along with detailed results from the November election...
pollsters, georgia, election
328
2020-53-21
Monday, 21 December 2020 11:53 AM
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