Excellent post from dreaminonempty at DailyKos about Latino voters titled: Most of the data on Latino voters is bogus. Here are the real poll numbers. And, as you’ll see, the post does a deep dive into poll numbers in key states, using data collected by Latino Decisions:
Recently, there was a story claiming Republican candidates were winning among Latino voters in Georgia. The entirety of this story was based on a small portion of a SurveyUSA/11Alive poll that interviewed a grand total of 36—yup, three dozen—self-identified Hispanic voters.
So was the poll right? Should we be worried?
Not a chance. On the contrary, this is a good example of why you should never trust the crosstabs of a minority demographic, especially in robopolls. (And that goes for all types of demographic minorities, for example age 18-29.) You simply cannot get a good measure of opinion with only a handful of respondents.
To see an example of Latino voter data from ordinary polls failing miserably, here’s the data from the crosstabs of October 2012 Colorado polls of the presidential race, compared to the exit poll, and the two Latino Decisions polls (which poll only Latino voters and are carefully designed to accurately measure the opinions of the Latino electorate).
Our best measurements—the exit poll and Latino Decisions polls of just Latino voters—show Obama receiving between 74-87 percent of the Latino vote. But if you had looked at ordinary polls, they would have told you Obama was set to get only about 48-66 percent—a gross underestimation.
None of the ordinary polls was designed specifically to measure the Latino electorate, and they clearly failed. This is typical for most states. But the Latino Decisions polls were close to the exit poll (and arguably, the election eve Latino Decisions polls are more accurate than the exit polls).
Latino Decisions is currently in the field conducting the 2014 Election Eve poll. Results will be available on Tuesday. One of Latino Decisions’ founders, Gary Segura, tweeted about their operation:
— Gary Segura (@GarySegura) October 30, 2014