Poll Analysis: McKenna leads Inslee in May

A new poll came out yesterday in the gubernatorial race between Jay Inslee (D) and Rob McKenna (R) yesterday. The poll was by Seattle-based Strategies 360, and showed McKenna leading Inslee 43% to 39%. The poll was taken from 22nd through the 24th of May on a sample of 500 likely voters (MOE 4.4%).

Before I get into the analysis, I have two confessions.

First, I ignored the Strategies 360 poll from last September. Basically, I was told they were working as a partisan (Democratic) pollster, and for that reason failed my inclusion criteria. When I saw the results yesterday, I got curious and called their VP of Polling and Research, Kevin Ingham. He set the record straight. They don’t work for candidates, and their election polls are not done on behalf of a partisan client. Okay….they’re in!

The second confession is that there was another poll in May that I previously missed. It came out while I was off-line travelling for a couple of days, and by the time I stumbled across the poll it was old. That poll was from SurveyUSA and had McKenna leading Inslee 40% to 38%. The poll was taken on May 8th and 9th on a sample of 557 individuals (MOE 4.2%).

With two polls for May, one taken early, one later, I’ll analyze them together using a Monte Carlo analysis of a million simulated elections.

Between the two polls, there were 1057 “votes” of which 844 went for either McKenna or Inslee. Inslee received 407 “votes” (38.5%) and McKenna received 438 (41.4%) “votes.” The simulated elections were won by Inslee 221,876 times and McKenna, 770,944 times. Here is the distribution of election outcomes from the simulations:

TwoMayPolls

The results suggest that, if the election was held in May, Inslee would have had a 22.3% probability of winning the election, and McKenna would have won with a 77.7% probability. By standard statistical inference, McKenna’s lead is “not significant.” He’s have to have a 95% or greater probability of winning for a “significant” lead. Still…I’d rather have a 78% probability than 22% probability of winning….

The larger trend in the election can be seen from the collection of polls:

GenericCongress01May12-31May12Washington

A reasonable read of the raw polling data is that McKenna maintains a small lead over Inslee at this point in the race.

Comments

  1. 1

    rhp6033 spews:

    We’ve got to work on: (a) making sure McKenna’s real colors are well known; (b) increasing name recognition for Inslee beyond the Seattle area; and (c) work hard on turnout, especially student voters. I expect that the Republican “war on women” won’t do well with them, if they bother to vote in numbers significantly greater than usual.

  2. 2

    bob spews:

    Inslee doesn’t feel higher taxation is necessary to spur revenue growth.

    Make sure you differentiate him from McKenna in this regard.

    Oh, wait……

  3. 3

    Richard Pope spews:

    Practically, I think McKenna’s lead in polls is solely attributable to having much better name recognition than Inslee.

    Back in 2004, Gregoire led in every poll, but the election came out to be pretty much a total dead heat. All due to Gregoire having much better name recognition than Rossi, when the polls were being asked before the election.

    In 1992, when Gregoire was first elected Attorney General, she was not very well known at all. Norm Maleng had MUCH better name recognition, and led in every pre-election poll. But Gregoire beat Maleng by a decent margin — because most of the undecideds broke for her (since they mostly were not Maleng supporters in the first place).

    I think if McKenna doesn’t start polling at least in the 47 to 48 percentage range, his chances of getting over 50 in an actual election are pretty slim.

  4. 5

    Roger Rabbit spews:

    @2 In a state where the poor pay 17% of their income to state/local taxes and the rich pay 3%, I don’t have a problem with getting more revenue from those not paying their share, in order to save vital public services.

  5. 6

    Kim Jong Chillin spews:

    5. Roger Rabbit spews:
    @2 In a state where the poor pay 17% of their income to state/local taxes and the rich pay 3%, I don’t have a problem with getting more revenue from those not paying their share, in order to save vital public services.

    05/31/2012 AT 8:47 PM

    got any facts to back that up?

    Who decides who is rich and who is poor? where is the line drawn? Who decides what is “fair” taxation? REAL fair taxation would be everyone paying the same dollar amount.

    If we all just get one vote, shouldnt we all pay the same amount in taxes – or at least in tax rate?

    oh well, I should be used to Goebbels Rabbit making idiotic comments out of his ass….

  6. 7

    Liberal Scientist is a slut who occasionally wears a hoodie spews:

    REAL fair taxation would be everyone paying the same dollar amount.

    That is ludicrous on its face.

    If we all just get one vote, shouldnt we all pay the same amount in taxes – or at least in tax rate?

    Idiot. False equivalence. Too stooopid to respond to further – don’t you have a Klan Klavern meeting to go to, or something?

  7. 10

    Doc Daneeka spews:

    “REAL fair taxation would be everyone paying the same dollar amount.”

    Because every citizen places equal demands on government services?
    One pretty good way of estimating demand for government services is measuring economic activity – ALL economic activity. Is it reasonable to pretend that a single mom working two low-wage jobs produces the same total of economic activity as Kemper Freeman Jr.? Both work very hard, I’m sure. But the results are very different in terms of economic activity. Wouldn’t you agree?

  8. 11

    rhp6033 spews:

    I’m sure Kemper Freeman’s idea of “hard work” is considerably different from that of the single mom working two jobs. He would be immediately frustrated at having to work 18+ hour days and having nothing to show for it at the end of the day except the next day’s work.

    There is a considerable difference between a man who inherits farmland and turns it into a suburban development, and later a city, and one who is still scrambling to find two dimes to rub together. Sure, Kemper Freeman did quite a job creating his multi-billion dollar real estate empire. But the development of Bellevue would have proceeded, with him or without him. He didn’t make jobs, he just made sure those jobs ended up supporting him and his kin.

  9. 12

    Ekim spews:

    If we all just get one vote, shouldnt we all pay the same amount in taxes – or at least in tax rate?

    If we all pay the same amount in taxes shouldn’t we all earn the same amount?

  10. 13

    Liberal Scientist is a slut who occasionally wears a hoodie spews:

    Is that like a lab tech beaker cleaner meeting?

    *chuckle*
    I think I must really be getting under your skin.
    *chuckle*

  11. 14

    Kim Jong Chillin spews:

    13. Liberal Scientist is a slut who occasionally wears a hoodie spews:
    Is that like a lab tech beaker cleaner meeting?

    *chuckle*
    I think I must really be getting under your skin.
    *chuckle*

    06/01/2012 AT 12:54 PM

    ummm, not hardly.

    you arent in a position to get under my skin –

    but keep telling yourself that if it makes you feel better.

  12. 15

    Kim Jong Chillin spews:

    12. Ekim spews:
    If we all just get one vote, shouldnt we all pay the same amount in taxes – or at least in tax rate?

    If we all pay the same amount in taxes shouldn’t we all earn the same amount?

    06/01/2012 AT 12:45 PM

    nope.

    if I pay twice as much in taxes as you, shouldnt I get two votes to your one vote during an election.

    no taxation without representation? how about equal taxation for equal representation?

    the thing is this: practicality and fairness are not the same thing.
    Is it practical for the rich to pay more on a graduated scale? probably yes(especially with the way our dumbfuck govt spends money). is that “fair”? of course its not.
    so what I am tired of hearing is people demanding that the “rich”(whatever that means) pay their “fair share”..bullshit – it has nothing to do with fair, so stop using the term and quit trying to BS people.

    just be honest: if you want the “rich”(whatever that means) to pay more, then say you want them to pay their “practical share”.

    practical and fair are rarely the same thing, so stop trying to mindfuck people into thinking that they are.
    then again, with the seemingly endless supply of stupid fucks that vote D(the same ones that pay NO federal income taxes), I suppose its easy to go for the low hanging fruit and say others need pay their “fair share”

    you want fair? then fine, everyone gets one vote and pays the same tax rate across the board – end of discussion.

    you want practical? then thats another story…and a bit more complex

  13. 17

    Kim Jong Chillin spews:

    If we all just get one vote, shouldnt we all pay the same amount in taxes – or at least in tax rate?

    Idiot. False equivalence

    really? our founding fathers felt a little differently…..of course since you are a “scientist”(insert laughter here), I suppose you think you are smarter than them….