In today’s Wheeling Intelligencer there is a story on an internal poll released by WV Representative Alan Mollohan. The poll is meaningless. Let’s quote from today’s paper:
Mollohan’s poll was conducted April 21-22 by Frederick Polls of Arlington, Va. Surveyed were 400 likely primary voters with names selected randomly from data provided by the West Virginia Democratic Party. The margin of error was 4.9 percent.
The first huge problem with this “poll” is that is looks to only count Democrats–in other words, this is not truly a random poll of all likely voters in the 1st district. About all that one can say is that of those Demcorats on the rolls of the state party, those are the people that support Mollohan.
The margin of error of the poll is also rather high.
The bottom line problem? The Mollohan poll leaves out Republicans and Independents (in other words a significant WV voting public, which is somewhere around (below) half a million voters statewide). Therefore, any generalization that are made about what WV believes should be discounted. Interesting the poll may be, but generalizable it is not.
I would be interested in the numbers of registered voters in the 1st district by party if anybody has those.
Update/Clarification: Someone mentioned to me that the reason Mollohan polled only Democrats was because he is running in a primary and being challenged by Oliverio. This is all true. Except, my point is that his poll only polls Democrats (or appears to) and the Democrat primary is an open primary. Therefore, his poll is still meaningless and not generalizable because it does not count certain independents who will choose to vote in the Democrat primary.