The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Opinion

October 11, 2012

Our View: Polls don’t vote for presidents

In our view, polls are like oddsmaker predictions for football games. They can swing in an instant one way or another.

A week before the first presidential debate, the Pew Poll, one that is generally respected for fairness, showed President Barack Obama leading former Gov. Mitt Romney 51 percent to 43 percent. A couple of days after that first debate, the results were Romney leading Obama 49 percent to 45 percent, a swing of 12 percentage points.

Were either of the two polls inaccurate, or in fact did American public opinion swing by 12 percent or so in a week? That would reflect a change in voter opinion of over 14 million potential voters come Nov. 6. That is a huge amount of votes if it takes only about 60 million favorable votes to win the election.

As well, we are being told by national media sources that the presidential election will be decided only in “battleground” states like Ohio, Virginia, Florida, etc. We suppose then, if you believe everything you hear, our votes in Missouri, Kansas and Oklahoma mean little or nothing, right?

Our point is simple. Why would any responsible voter cast a ballot as a result of the influence from polls?

Our individual votes should be the results of careful individual decisions taking into account the confidence in the future leadership, the ability of a candidate to make the correct decisions in the future and get others to follow his lead. We need a president who will help all Americans, not just various groups of Americans.

Voters should not be mobs urged on by sound bites, vague and questionable promises or mass opinion that swings all the time, at the drop of a hat so to speak in today’s world of instant communications. Our future prosperity and protection in America will turn on effective leadership from a president to a great degree.

Great leaders are not made by polls. They are created by long experience, courage and a keen sense of what is right to do.

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Opinion
  • Our View.jpg Our View: No need for No. 9

    “Shall the Missouri Constitution be amended so that the people shall be secure in their electronic communications and data from unreasonable searches and seizures as they are now likewise secure in their persons, homes, papers and effects?”

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  • Your View: ‘Right to Farm’ is wrong

    On Aug. 5, voters will be asked to make a decision about Amendment 1.

    July 29, 2014

  • Your View: No on Amendment 7

    The Missouri Department of Transportation is wanting more money through a three-quarter-cent addition to the sales tax. Consider one example of how it spends your money.

    July 29, 2014

  • Your View: Bad way to get revenue

    I received two fliers through the mail today asking me to vote “yes” on Amendment 7, which would add a three-quarter-cent tax to Missouri’s sales tax to help maintain roads and bridges.

    July 29, 2014

  • Other Views Other Views: Symptom of bad policy

    The Obama administration continues to be surprised and shocked when its policies of good intentions suddenly meet the hard reality of unintended consequences.

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  • Rebecca French Smith, guest columnist: Amendment 1: Farmers are 'boots on the ground'

    Take a moment and ask yourself who was the last person in your family to farm.

    July 28, 2014

  • Your View; Makes no sense

    Chess was never my game. It’s too complicated.

    July 28, 2014

  • Your View: Time value of money

     I was shaking my head along with Anson Burlingame (“Much has changed in U.S. over 14 years,” Globe, July 22), then he offered his readers a chance: “Go ahead — take your pick.”

    July 28, 2014

  • Your View: Boiling a frog

    We voters are now being urged to vote on Aug. 5 for Amendment 7 “to fix our roads, highways and bridges.”

    July 28, 2014

  • Our view: 'Yes' on 7

    Opponents of Amendment 7 say this: “Missouri families are already hard pressed to pay their bills during this period of slow economic recovery.”

    July 26, 2014

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Poll

Given that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that electronic devices and communications are protected from searches and seizure without a warrant, do you think Missouri needs Amendment 9 added to its constitution?

A. Yes.
B. No.
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