EP 444 Political Polling: Is it Reliable or Necessary?

Presidential races are covered more like a horse race than a contest of ideas.  What impact does that have both on crowding out more important news about the candidates, like positions on issues, and on how we feel about the race depending on how our preferred candidate is doing?  Then there’s the growing concern that depending on the representativeness of the sample, whether the respondent will actually vote and the technology used to reach them, that the results may not mean much.  After all, we are reminded it is not a prediction, but rather a snapshot in time.  Polling and surveys have more value to our diverse society when used to determine what our fellow Americans think about a range of issues, according to our guest, Daniel Cox, a research fellow in polling and public opinion for the American Enterprise Institute.  He also is the director of their Survey Center on American Life.