The Importance Of Public Opinion Polls

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We are constantly asked about our opinions. Which football team do you think will win the super bowl? Who wore it better on the red carpet? Who will you vote for president? Public opinion polls are everywhere. Important decision makers in American government have long relied on public opinion polls throughout elections and important legislations. The problem is public opinion isn’t easy to track and offend times isn’t even right. In 1948 the Chicago daily tribune ran a known famous headline Dewy defeats Truman they cried in big bold black and white letters. The problem is, that Dowey hadn’t defeated Truman. The tribune had relied on polls to come to their conclusion. This happens all the time because public opinion polls are either inaccurate …show more content…
Finally polls that are too hard can’t tell you much either. If you are asking people for their opinions on things about which they have no prior knowledge your results will be pointless. It’s not just the people you are asking that can cause bias though, the person doing the asking is part of the problem too, and that’s called interviewer bias. Interviewer bias is all about the effect that the person asking the questions has on the sample. Humans generally don’t like confrontation. People worry that their answers will make them look bad, therefore, we find that people tend to give socially desirable responses which is not necessarily their honest opinions because they don’t want to come across heartless or racists. The way we word our questions matters too. When polls purposely sway the answers one way or the other it’s called the push poll because it pushes people to answer a certain way. For example, will you vote for candidate Donald Trump? Is a perfectly normal question or would you vote for candidate Donald Trump if you knew he called all Mexicans rapists? is a push

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