Cenk Uygur, John Iadarola, and Maytha Alhassen, hosts of "The Young Turks," discuss a CNN poll conducted by research organization SSRS that showed Joe Biden with a resounding lead against Sen. Bernie Sanders in the Democratic presidential primary.
JOHN IADAROLA, THE YOUNG TURKS: Just days after announcing his candidacy, Joe Biden apparently got a big bump in the polls -- or did he? Because the headlines all seem pretty clear that he shot up, but when you look closer it's not as clear as the headlines make it seem.
On Tuesday there was a CNN poll showing Biden at 39, Sanders at 15, and Warren at 8. That is not only a big lead for Biden over Sanders, it is also a big jump for Biden, who had generally been in the high 20s, occasionally 30-31.
That's a big jump, but I want to show you the actual demographic breakdown in the poll. The text is very small and there's a lot of stuff there, but what you will notice immediately is there's a lot of N/As. And the N/As are in the category of people between the ages of 18-34 and 35-49. Now, a lot of people noticed that. That does not mean that they didn't have any respondents in those ages, they did. It just means that there weren't enough of them to consider it to be a representative sample for opinions held by those people, there just weren't enough of them. Overall it means that the results are going to be a good bit biased because what you are really polling is not people, it is the oldest age groups in America.
Is it a shock that they might prefer Joe Biden over some of the other candidates? Again, it doesn't mean that he didn't experience some sort of bump, or that the bump might not be sustainable, but the headlines never said, "Joe Biden Gets Big Bump In Poll Of Septuagenarians," it says "Joe Biden Up Big," pack this thing in, it's done...
Just to give you an example of how these polls were relayed to the people, we have from Politico, "Biden Extends Lead By 11 Points In CNN Poll With Post-Announcement Surge."
Axios had, "The Biden Bump: 3 New Polls Show Former VP Extends Lead Over 2020 Field."
I don't necessarily blame them, I wish that they, I guess it was laziness of a form, but they're not going to dig into the crosstabs and everything of every poll. I wish they would because it is important, but mostly they're worried about missing something, so if Biden is surging they want to make sure they had a headline about it, but also they want to capitalize on any drama. Nobody wants the headline to be "Polls Roughly Similar." You can't do that headline every three days. So if he shoots up it is going to be drama...
I'm going to bring this guy up, it might anger you a little bit, but in terms of how you frame these sorts of results, this has definitely played into the past few days of social media activity of Nate Silver, the numbers guy. He's got his not-to-be-taken-too-seriously presidential tiers. You see Biden is there all by himself and then there is a little gap, I don't know what that represents, and then you see Harris going down, Sanders going down, Warren actually going up.
And what I noticed --I don't know if you've been following his Twitter activity-- the way he interprets literally everything in this primary in terms of how durable a lead is, electability, all of it coincidentally none of it favors Bernie Sanders. From issue to issue to issue, he doesn't necessarily talk about Bernie Sanders but it is always pitched as things are working out for the other candidates. Bernie's got lots of name recognition, probably going to fall after this. But that same thing doesn't apply to Biden. It is this weird inconsistency on how things are supposed to work.