Eagle Forum Legislative Alerts

Monday, August 08, 2016

Polls Were Wrong about Immigration and Brexit

So often we hear about the latest polls, and how accurate they are supposed to be. Politicians and even investors rely heavily on polls. Polling is used to tell Americans that a conservative candidate cannot win, or that Congress should pass liberal legislation supposedly favored by the public based on biased polling.

But polls were badly wrong in predicting the so-called “Brexit” vote in the United Kingdom in late June. To the dismay of globalists, that referendum decided that the U.K., including England, would leave the European Union. The polling data had indicated that British voters would choose to remain in the EU, and thereby continue to allow large amounts of immigration. But when the results were in, the result was a stunning victory for leaving the EU. The polls were wrong by nearly 5 percentage points. Investors were proven completely wrong also. The Dow Jones lost 610 points after the results of the Brexit vote were announced, which was its 8th largest loss ever. The British Prime Minister, David Cameron, felt compelled to resign after the surprising outcome.

When immigration is the issue, as it was in the Brexit vote and will be again in the presidential election this fall, polls are a particularly poor predictor of the outcome. Polls about Brexit were the most inaccurate.

When a new candidate is disfavored by the media, as Ronald Reagan was in 1980, polls can underestimate how well he will do on Election Day. As late as days and weeks before Reagan’s landslide victory, multiple polls showed Reagan trailing Jimmy Carter. Virtually no poll predicted that Reagan would win by 10 points as he did. A phenomenon may happen this fall.

Listen to the radio commentary here:

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