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Keller @ Large: Crowds And Signs Mean Nothing To Most Voters

BOSTON (CBS) – There are certain clichés you just know you’re going to hear repeated every campaign: “this is a movement… I’m fighting for you… the only poll that counts is the one on election day!”

Sure enough, we’re hearing them all these days.

And here’s another one – don’t believe the polls (says the candidate who’s trailing), look at the size and enthusiasm of the crowds I’m drawing!

We’ve been getting this one quite a bit lately from Donald Trump; we heard it earlier in the year from Bernie Sanders as his campaign was fading. And if you were ever tempted to believe that spin, check out a new poll of voter activism from the Huffington Post.

Hillary Clinton speaks at a rally at John Marshall High School on August 17, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jeff Swensen/Getty Images)

Hillary Clinton speaks at a rally at John Marshall High School on August 17, 2016 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Jeff Swensen/Getty Images)

It found that very few voters ever attend a political event, with only eight-percent reporting they’d been to a Clinton event, and six-percent claiming attendance at a Trump rally.

How about yard signs and bumper stickers? Again, eight-percent say they’ve displayed one for Clinton, six-percent for Trump.

And over the years, study after study has shown that people who show up for rallies tend to already be enthusiastic supporters of that candidate.

In other words, the polls tell the truth far more than the crowds and the spin.

Yes, polls are sometimes proven wrong, but most of the time they are not.

Hey, candidates – don’t worry about how big or vocal your crowds are, or how many yard signs you see with your name on it. Focus on a message that reverberates widely, and on delivering it intelligently.

Otherwise, you might as well start drafting your concession speech.

Listen to Jon’s commentary:

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Comments

One Comment

  1. Fred says:

    John, there are many out there who would love to go out and get the vote for and show the support they have for Trump. but thanks to some they are just in too much fear of retaliation and violence when they show their support of him which has been shown by other. Don’t believe the polls, Trump will win in Florida, Ohio, and PA on election day.

  2. The Owl says:

    Since so many of the polls being referenced to day by the likes of CBS and the others in the news media have more akin to push polls than to methodologically correct ones, it is hard to believe what they are telling those that read them.

    Frequently, when you dive down into the detall responses and look at the actual questions, very different conclusions can be drawn from those illuminated by the summary headlines.

    Just who is responsible for that?

    Surely the pollsters bear an out-sized share of the blame for the deception, Bu you in the news media, Jon, have also abdicated your responsibility for getting things right by only biting on the flashy headlines.

    Do you feel any remorse for being part of the herd of sheep all of the time?

    1. Bengals2 says:

      Consider the fact that it’s the Huffington Post. They probably had a poll that had Mondale over Reagan.

      1. Cambridge Proud says:

        You mean like those polls in 2012 were dead wrong?

      2. bees_knees_3 says:

        I agree Bengals….and they probably had one with Obama beating Romney….oh, wait, they did.

    2. Crabman says:

      “Since so many of the polls being referenced to day by the likes of CBS and the others in the news media have more akin to push polls than to methodologically correct ones…”

      Clearly you have no clue as to what a “push poll” is. Hint: a “push poll” is not a poll (“methodologically correct” or otherwise).

  3. bees_knees_6 says:

    I basically do not care what reasoning – logical or no – you place behind polls. They are useless. One of the candidates changes his mind by the minute. I do believe he is working on a new (again) immigration plan. The other has a problem crop up daily. We will know by the third or fourth week in november or if Trump loses by this time next year who will walk into the White House in January.

  4. Bunny Smith says:

    I don’t always agree with you Jon, but this time I do 100% :-)

  5. mstarvin says:

    Well that is good news for Hillary as most of her rallies have 80% of the seats empty and the signs all say Bernie!!

  6. fred125 says:

    Jon, You know full well that it means a lot. Everywhere Trump goes, he gets HUGE crowds or people who are excited he is there. Sickly Hillary gets a small smattering of people who barely care she is even there (it would be an even smaller crowd if the DNC and unions did not bus people in to fill up the empty seats.

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