Inst Elec Integr 3

Lori’s Blog

A little movie of our California exit pollers… Sorry about the size…

Hi Everyone,

I would like to share with all of you the results of the exit poll that we did at the Institute for American Democracy and Election Integrity (ADEI).  And, I also want to THANK ALL OF YOU PEOPLE at who donated to the Institute for the exit poll. Your donations definitely helped us pay our cost over-runs. The Institute and Election Justice USA decided to jointly sponsor an exit poll because Edison Media Research decided to cancel exit polls for the rest of the USA after Attorney Cliff Arnebeck wrote a letter to Edison Research Media asking to see the unadjusted data. There was also an article by Tim Robbins questioning the exit polls that were showing dramatic differences between the exit poll totals and the election night results. At about that time, Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders was showing a very distinct lead against Clinton in 12 states which disappeared shortly after the polls closed. This suggested that electronic manipulation of the polls was taking place. We at the Institute decided to run an exit poll close to our area in California to try to give voters a better picture of the true election results for at least three counties in California.

ADEI  conducted exit polls during the 2016 California presidential primary in three counties at 12 precincts. This was organized and managed, initially, by Josh and Sarah Mittel. The polls were randomized and representative of the demographic data in the precinct area. The counties were Contra Costa, Santa Clara, and Alameda Counties and four polling places were chosen in each county. The sample size was 3, 321. This is an impressive number of people,by the way, as Edison Research Media will often poll only 1200 people in a national presidential election. Lori Grace of the Institute managed the followup which included a week of filing the 3,321 exit poll results into an Excel spread sheet. After that Tina Kimmel  PhD, MPH and MSW and Josh Mittel PhD analyzed the data. Both people have an extensive background in statistics.

With respect to the Democratic primary, the results were the following: The official vote for these three counties show Sanders winning over Clinton 49.2% to 4.6%, a 3.1% margin. By official, I mean what was reported at the Secretary of State’s office. The exit polls conducted by the Institute showed  Sanders winning over Clinton in a unadjusted exit poll 52.6% to Clinton’s 43.8%. Then we adjusted the results for demographic data and the difference became 51.9% for Sanders and Clinton 44.4%-still a fairly large  Sanders victory of 7.5% You might ask what kind of demographic data did we adjust for. The exit pollers found that older white men did not often agree to fill out the exit poll. They tended to be Trump, Johnson and occasionally Clinton supporters. Gary Johnson is the Libertarian candidate. So for the people who did not participate in the exit poll, many of which were older white men, we added some votes for Trump, Johnson and Clinton proportionally to the exit poll results.

The Institute used the Senate race as a “benchmark” against the presidential race. This is done in all good polling where you pair a vote you are interested in, like the presidential candidate with the senatorial candidate.  The ADEI exit poll results for both candidates Kamala Harris and Loretta Sanchez matched the official voting tally within the 2 percent margin of error. A 2 percent difference in the margin of error is common in most exit polls and is not considered a fraction of election irregularities or fraud.

One thing that I, Lori of the Institute would like to share is that the people who were helping us with the exit poll were very enthusiastic. This shows me that ordinary citizens can get very excited about ensuring the integrity of the vote. Another thing that I learned from organizing this exit poll is that it was quite expensive. Our total costs, shared between the Institute and Election Justice USA were about $25,000. Also,as you might expect, I learned that exit polling is a great job for people who are very detail-oriented.

Another thing that I would like to acknowledge is that we received many small donations to help us financially with the exit polls. THANK YOU AGAIN, Trust Vote People, you really care about democracy and accurate election results. We at the Institute SO APPRECIATE YOU! We are sad that Bernie decided to give in. He and his staff did not seriously consider the outstanding poll analyses done by Lulu Fries’dat of Election Justice USA together with Anselmo Sampietro and Fritz Scheuren, President of the American Statistical Association. This habit  of not considering electronic manipulation and the strange statistical results that can appear has been a longstanding pattern in American culture. Also, at this point, I have seen three presidential candidates fight for their right to the presidency based upon evidence of serious electronic fraud. I sat with with a small group of people together Al Gore one day in 2006 as a Climate Project trainee and asked him why he did not push for being president since he felt that the election was stolen. He said to us that he would have caused a revolution and just did not have the stamina to survive what would ensue.I was part of Audit the Vote in 2004. We watched Kerry be evasive and back out of fighting for what, in my opinion  was rightfully his. Finally, we have watched Bernie Sanders this year give in in spite of excellent statistics and an army of supporters and promote Clinton for president. I am hoping that we can change the system so that presidential candidates will one day be able to stand up for what appears to be very rightfully theirs.