Prof: Political polls meaningless

WHITEFISH BAY, Wis. — Recent polls show President Obama is the front runner in Wisconsin.

But one political expert says you can throw out all of the polls, adding this election really is unpredictable.

The final push, the closing argument. This weekend is it. Time to make up your mind, with the election clock ticking down to just hours.

If you're looking for predictions how tight this race is, just look at all of the campaign stops by the candidates themselves in the final week in Wisconsin.

"A real phenomenon of Wisconsin is that people make up their minds over the last weekend," said Mordecai Lee, professor of governmental affairs at UW-Milwaukee.

Lee said those looking at polls, as a prediction to how Tuesday night will turn out, might not be the best idea.

"We have to remember that, generally speaking, the wording of a poll is, 'If the election were held today, how would you vote?'" Lee said.

The final Marquette University Law School poll has President Obama with a lead over rival Mitt Romney, and Tammy Baldwin up on Tommy Thompson.

But even the pollsters admit, they are focused on voter trends, not a final result.

"One of the reasons we release the poll a full week before is we are not trying to get the race right. If we were, we would be trying to wait the day before the election," said poll director Charles Franklin.

Franklin said research shows there is room for movement in the final days.

Lee said it's a trait that is unique to the Badger State.

"People feel free to change their minds in Wisconsin. Cross over voting is a very common thing," Lee said.

And if you need any indication how close this race is, just take a peak at who has been coming to town. A swing state, on battleground, in a race that is truly unpredictable.

"It is just as likely that Romney will win Wisconsin, as Obama will win Wisconsin," said Franklin.

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Comments

Watcher1
I thought it odd that Fox11 broadcast Mitt's entire speech the other day, then I started noticing stories like this. I realize now that the poll's are "meaningless" because it shows Mitt behind. I simply open up your site and find an overwhelming lean to the right. I would dismiss it as my imagination, then I found this,- Fox News Redefines Unbalanced By Giving Romney 80 Percent More Airtime | Blog | Media Matters for America - http://mediamatters.org/blog/2012/11/03/fox-news-redefines-unbalanced-by-giving-romney/191118 and remembered who owns this station, which is fine, I can stop watching a TV station, it's the line next to your logo, the source for "balanced news" that gets me. I don't like being taken as a fool or lied to. Shame
 

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Wisconsin (change)

 
According to the 2010 U.S. Census, Wisconsin’s population totaled 5,686,986, a 6.0% increase over the 2000 U.S. Census count of 5,363,715. (Source: Wisconsin Blue Book)
 
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Governor: Scott Walker
Lieutenant Governor: Rebecca Kleefisch
Attorney General: J.B. Van Hollen

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