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Republican voters twice as likely to conceal presidential preference from pollsters

Are Trump supporters punking the pollsters? Probably, as Presidential polls may be undercounting Republican and independent voters, who are twice as likely as Democrats to conceal their preference, a recent survey found.

CloudResearch LLC, a New York City-based company that conducts online market research, released a study based on phone surveys that examined “shy voters.” It found that 11.7 percent of Republicans and 10.5 percent of independents said they would not reveal their preferred presidential candidate, “The Washington Examiner” reported. In this election, Independents also mirror Republican support for President Donald Trump.

“In contrast, just 5.4 percent of Democrats say they’d be reluctant to share their true voting intentions — roughly half the number of Republicans reluctant to tell the truth on phone polls,” CloudResearch reported.

The poll also found that 10.1 percent of Trump supporters were likely to mess with the pollsters in phone surveys in sharing who they really support. Only 5.1 percent of Biden supporters said the same.

Surveyors collected answers as to why “‘shy voters’ are concerned about sharing their voting intentions,” which elicited responses such as the fear answers would not be kept confidential, the belief that polls are biased and a dislike of phone calls.

“I don’t believe the information would be confidential, and I think it’s dangerous to express an opinion outside of the current liberal viewpoint,” CloudResearch reported as one response.

“Well, I probably wouldn’t give my opinion period, but if pushed, I would not give my real opinion for fear of reprisal if someone found out,” another said.

Yet another said, “Because most polls released to the public are slanted and aren’t scientifically based. So, they are messing with the results of the survey from the beginning by knocking down one party or the other. I’m just trying to right the ship.”

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CloudResearch conducted the phone interviews between Aug. 19–27 “from two national online sample waves of 1,000 registered voters (2000 respondents in total), matched to U.S. census data on gender, age, race, and region.”

Polls are now starting to show Biden and Trump tied, within the margin of error. If Republicans support is underestimated because of their polling “shyness,” pundits contend Trump could actually be ahead by several points.  Compare this to the same time four years ago, during the Clinton-Trump contest. In early September of 2016, odds were 10-1 in favor of a Clinton victory as polls showed her 8-12 points ahead. Trump ended up winning in an electoral landslide.

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Polls have also found that Black voter support for Trump is at record highs for a Republican since the 1960s.  The latest post-convention poll found it to be 25 percent. That is four times the percentage of support he received from African Americans in the 2016 election. Analysts say Democrats need to keep Trump’s Black support to under 5 percent for Biden to be elected.

–Dwight Widaman | Metro Voice