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Tue Nov 17, 2020, 08:48 AM

Real Clear Politics Made a Sharp Right Turn. What Steered It?

A Popular Political Site Made a Sharp Right Turn. What Steered It?

Real Clear Politics has been catering to campaign obsessives since 2000. It pitches itself as a “trusted, go-to source” for unbiased polling. The Trump era changed its tone, and funding sources.

For three days after every major news organization declared Joseph R. Biden Jr. the victor of the presidential election, one widely read political site maintained that Pennsylvania was still too close to call.

The delay was welcome news to allies of President Trump like Rudolph W. Giuliani and friendly outlets like The Gateway Pundit, which misrepresented the site’s decision in their efforts to spread false claims that Mr. Biden’s lead was unraveling.

That site, Real Clear Politics, is well known as a clearinghouse of elections data and analysis with a large following among the political and media establishment — and the kinds of political obsessives who might now have all the counties in Georgia memorized. It markets itself to advertisers as a “trusted, go-to source” admired by campaign and news professionals alike. Its industry benchmark polling average is regularly cited by national publications and cable news networks.

But less well known is how Real Clear Politics and its affiliated websites have taken a rightward, aggressively pro-Trump turn over the last four years as donations to its affiliated nonprofit have soared. Large quantities of those funds came through two entities that wealthy conservatives use to give money without revealing their identities.

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/17/us/politics/a-popular-political-site-made-a-sharp-right-turn-what-steered-it.html


I haven't placed any great trust in RCP since the 2008 election, when I noticed its slate of polls changed from week to week to focus on those that gave more favorable results for the Republicans. I assume that pattern continued after I stopped paying it much attention.
This is the DU member formerly known as Denzil_DC.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 08:51 AM

1. They were a heckuva lot closer than 538

538 is a joke now.

RCP hit the nail on the head in PA. Were about a point off in MI. Got GA off by a little over a point in the other direction. Minnesota they had Biden by 4, he won by 7 there. FL they were off by 4. AZ they nailed.

IA, WI, and OH, those are the states we have to look at. What was the polling way way off? Did the GOP cheat?

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Response to Johnny2X2X (Reply #1)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 08:56 AM

3. The article doesn't just focus on the polling averages (though it agrees with my OP assessment).

As the administration lurched from one crisis after another — impeachment, the coronavirus, a lost election the president refuses to concede — Real Clear became one of the most prominent platforms for elevating unverified and reckless stories about the president’s political opponents, through a mix of its own content and articles from across conservative media.

As the administration lurched from one crisis after another — impeachment, the coronavirus, a lost election the president refuses to concede — Real Clear became one of the most prominent platforms for elevating unverified and reckless stories about the president’s political opponents, through a mix of its own content and articles from across conservative media.

...

One article from October 2019, for instance, purported to name and identify in a photo the anonymous whistle blower who reported the phone call between Mr. Trump and the Ukrainian president that led to Mr. Trump’s impeachment. Other news organizations knew the identity but declined to publish it because of concerns that the person’s safety could be jeopardized. Facebook prevented people from sharing the Real Clear article, saying it violated the social network’s policy against inciting harm. Fox News cautioned its staff at the time not to identify the person on the air.

...

Other times its stories have been inaccurate. Another Real Clear investigative piece from April misidentified the author of an anonymous New York Times Op-Ed article written by a member of the Trump administration who claimed to be one of many high-level officials working to thwart the president’s “worst inclinations.”

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/17/us/politics/a-popular-political-site-made-a-sharp-right-turn-what-steered-it.html
This is the DU member formerly known as Denzil_DC.

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Response to Johnny2X2X (Reply #1)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 09:06 AM

4. Their polling average closeness was mostly due to luck and not any methodological superiority.

They relied heavily on right-leaning pollsters who gave very favorable numbers to 45. The massive surge in turnout from white voters in red and swing states produced the results which RCP “predicted” with their polling averages which were biased in 45’s favor.

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Response to Johnny2X2X (Reply #1)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 09:43 AM

9. Yes, their use of hard-right pollsters in their averages brought them some luck

So, we should use wingnut sources now?
This is the DU member formerly known as Dem2.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 08:55 AM

2. I've known RCP to be right leaning since I started checking it in 2008 also...

... 538 has been consistently a more reliable and objective aggregator of polls. I still checked RCP from time to time and this is completely subjective and anecdotal but it did absolutely occur to me that the articles they present in their newsfeed are quite a bit more right leaning and pro-Trump than has been the case in previous election cycles.

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Response to jcgoldie (Reply #2)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 11:57 AM

14. Yes they've always been right-leaning

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 09:17 AM

5. Billionaire Trump donors Liz and Dick Uihlein test positive for coronavirus

if they shuffle off this mortal coil, there goes a big chunk of nazi money donations to RCP

those fuckers have killed hundreds in Wisconsin with their COVID denialism bullshit

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 09:21 AM

6. You can't even read one article without RCP requiring you to register.

When that happened I deleted my bookmark for it.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 09:27 AM

7. I noticed the stories on their front page changed and now look like 4chan or Parlour

So I won't be bothering with them anymore.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 09:41 AM

8. I'm just saying...

I've been kind of beating this drum for years now...
This is the DU member formerly known as Dem2.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 09:46 AM

10. It was funny to see Republicans and the Trumpanzees

hang their hopes on RealClear Politics “graying out” Pennsylvania. They are a polling site and nothing more
This is the DU member formerly known as Rice4VP.

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 10:01 AM

11. I always assumed that RCP was right-wing.

They have never really hidden that fact. Doesn’t necessarily mean that their data is wrong.

Now, if the story, here, is that RCP has become EVEN MORE right-wing over the last four years, fine. That’s news, but it’s not Earth-shattering.

-Laelth

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Response to Denzil_DC (Original post)

Tue Nov 17, 2020, 11:56 AM

13. I don't ever remember them not being right wing

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