2022 a Great Year for Those Who Dislike Political Polls

FiveThirtyEight's forecasters find the lack of reliable information 'disconcerting'
By Mike L. Ford,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 25, 2022 4:36 PM CDT
2022 Has Seen 'Way Fewer' Polls Than Past Years
   (Getty - Daniel Wright)

There’s been much ado lately about the dire state of polling—including a general lack of confidence among the public, pundits, and pollsters themselves that polls can be trusted at all. For those who simply detest polls and wish they would all go away, the current state of polling means good news: "There have been way fewer polls in 2022 than in past cycles," according to FiveThirtyEight’s Geoffrey Skelley. So far this year, pollsters have conducted about 900 surveys of Senate, House, and governor races compared to 1,700 by this time in 2010. Furthermore, partisan organizations as opposed to nonpartisan and big "legacy media" outlets have conducted a larger share of polls than in years past. Overall, Skelley says it’s all "disconcerting," especially for people in the business of forecasting elections.

While there is some "ebb and flow" to various polling types—for instance, there are slightly more polls for governor this year than in 2018—the overall number of polls has been on a downward trajectory since 2010. Skelley cites various reasons, beginning with the fact that polling has become more expensive and challenging since so many voters have ditched their landlines. Meanwhile, "less transparent" and potentially "less reliable" sources have stepped into the void, including Trafalgar Group, which has conducted more Senate polls than anyone else this year. Skelley writes that forecasters are "flying blind" in many races, and he concludes with the "hope that pollsters and news organizations figure out how to offer the public great polling information in the future." Read the whole essay here. (Read more fivethirtyeight.com stories.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.