News Sites Stop Polling After Debate to hide Trump’s Landslide?
Half a dozen news outlets skipped posting snap polls after the second 2016 presidential debate on Sunday — most likely because Donald Trump touted his dominance of their polls after the first debate in September.
The first presidential debate was a tough one for Republican presidential candidate Trump, but he publicly declared victory by citing a slew of unscientific online polls where respondents said he beat his Democratic rival Hillary Clinton. The Daily Mail rounded up the results of many of these snap polls, as well, with a headline blaring “Trump won debate by a landslide.”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 27, 2016
Establishment pundits reacted to the phenomenon with obvious jokes, as they have for a long time— as though they have some deep insight into the race by understanding that online polls are not scientific.
CNN Poll: Clinton overwhelmingly wins debate 57 -34. Scientific poll, not fake Trumpian online poll. #debate
— Mike Signorile (@MSignorile) October 10, 2016
EVERYBODY THE ONLINE SNAP WHO WON THINGS DON'T COUNT.
If you don't care who is in the poll or how many times they vote it's not a poll.
— David Byler (@davidbylerRCP) October 10, 2016
Before clicking to see, I’m setting the over/under on percent saying Trump won in Drudge’s post-debate poll at 90.0. Make your choice.
— Philip Bump (@pbump) October 10, 2016
I really wanna know what the Drudge poll says before I go too far out on a limb about who won.
— Christopher Hayes (@chrislhayes) October 10, 2016
Everyone knows online polls don’t reflect the electorate. But what they do reflect is the dedication and enthusiasm of a candidates’ online supporters. Both candidates’ fans have access to the same tools to game the polls — trolls, bots, etc. Pro-Clinton Super PAC Correct the Record has reportedly spent seven figures on online warfare. Yet Trump fans are still overwhelming the left in this facet of psy-ops, producing screenshot after screenshot of “polls” showing The Donald ahead.