The Great Polling Swindle: Daily Kos gets had

Some enterprising statisticians saw some fishy numbers in the Daily Kos polls and did a little digging. It turns out that Research 2000, the pollsters Kos paid to do the polling, just pocketed his money and made up the numbers.

I love statistical sleuthing like this.

Kos may or may not be an innocent victim. At a minimum, his initial selection of Research 2000 was probably influenced by them showing him poll results that aligned with his political beliefs (and perhaps their low cost -- they didn't have to employ actual pollsters!), and he apparently didn't do much vetting of the organization before hiring them.

To Kos's credit, he's handling this far more honestly and gracefully than CBS handled RatherGate, CNN handled Eason Jordan and Susan Roesgen, the Washington Post handled JournoList, etc. The MSM could take a lesson from Kos:
Sure, our friends on the Right will get to take some cheap shots, and they should take advantage of the opportunity. But ultimately, this episode validates the reason why we released the internal numbers from Research 2000 -- and why every media outlet should do the same from their pollster; without full transparency of results, this fraud would not have been uncovered. As difficult as it has been to learn that we were victims of that fraud, our commitment to accuracy and the truth is far more important than shielding ourselves from cheap shots from the Right.

Research 2000 was behind the widely reported poll that painted Republicans as extremists:
* 21 percent believe the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN) stole the 2008 election and 55 percent aren't sure.
* 31 percent believe Obama is a racist who hates white people and 33 percent aren't sure.
* 23 percent want their state to secede from the U.S. and 19 percent aren't sure.

The MSM fell for that one hook, line, and sinker, and used it to bash Republicans over and over.

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Happy Super Tuesday!