Analysis, discussion and opinions by members of Newsday's editorial board.
BloggersAlvin Bessent Rita Ciolli Michael Dobie Joseph Dolman Lane Filler Sam Guzik Anne Michaud Larry Striegel
Filler: Election night coverage full of numbers, short on information
No matter who wins the presidential election, I can tell you who the losers are in coverage of the big night: intelligence and common sense.
I’ve been watching CNN early on, and in its hunger to provide viewers with that ultra-niche information they can’t get on Fox News or MSNBC (but might well be able to garner from a Magic 8-Ball) they’ve been asking exiting voters questions they appear to have dreamed up while smoking high grade catnip.
For instance, at 7 p.m., the network was reporting that of tea party supporters surveyed, 86 percent voted for Romney, while 11 percent opted for Obama. Here’s what those results may actually mean:
RESULTS: National | Long Island | Map of how LI voted
PHOTOS: Obama, Romney | Election cartoons
| Newspaper covers from around the world
VIDEOS: Latest videos
MORE: Local contributions | All election coverage
Percentage of tea party supporters who voted for Romney: 97
Percentage of tea party supporters who hate the media enough to lie to pollsters: 11
Or, potentially, “Percentage of you who think we’re asking whether you enjoy sipping Earl Grey with friends: 11”
Almost as entertaining, (which is polite for “crushingly, amazingly silly) is the network’s exit poll results for people who think Obamacare should be repealed: 88 percent Romney, 10 percent Obama.
And think Obamacare should not be repealed: 88 percent Obama, 11 percent Romney.
What does your life experience tell you about this? Have you ever met a pro Obamacare, pro-Romney voter? Are there any in your sewing circle, or carpool? And how about pro-repeal voters? Certainly, there are liberals who would rather have single-payer health care, but in the wake of Obamacare’s passage, have you ever heard a liberal, or anyone who would vote for Obama, argue for repeal.
It’s bad enough to ask such stupid exit poll questions. Broadcasting such stupid answers, though, seemingly without any attempt to filter whether they are true or respondents are pulling your chain, is just laughable.