Wednesday, October 28, 2015

About That Jim Hood Poll

A poll is circulating around Mississippi showing a close race between incumbent Attorney General Jim Hood and his opponent. The poll shows Jim Hood leading with 50% to his opponent's 44% with 6% undecided (a plurality of the undecided voters are Democrats). This poll also shows a number of statewide Republican incumbents with oddly high re-elect numbers.

Before anyone on either side of these campaigns gets in a tizzy, let's take a look at who conducted the poll. The poll was conducted by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research. In case you have not heard of them, it is likely because they try to keep their history out of the news. For instance, during the 2012 election cycle, Mason-Dixon had an awful track record.

Mason-Dixon proudly projected that Mitt Romney would carry states like Virginia and Florida - Romney lost both; Mason-Dixon's poll showed Republican pickups in US Senate seats in Montana and North Dakota - Republicans lost both; Mason-Dixon polled a Congressional race in Utah showing a Republican pickup - the Republican lost.

In each poll, Mason-Dixon consistently raised likely turnout expectations among Republican voters anywhere from 4-6 percentage points. The same situation appears to be taking place in their Mississippi poll with Republican candidates running stronger than the historical average.

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