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Why most polls were wrong in the 2020 U.S. Presidential Election

by The 100 Companies
Why most polls were wrong in the 2020 U.S. Presidential Election

Most of the 2020 election polls were wrong, clearly favoring Joe Biden (+3.6 higher than the actual result). But why?

First, polling samples typically underrepresent Republican voters, and a digital gap exists between rural and nonrural voters, which biases online polling. Second, social desirability bias may be at play, meaning some people might have said they are voting for Biden when they actually are voting for Trump. Also, attitude does not equal behavior. Some who said they were going to vote may not have voted.

Polling, though, is still critically important. However, the sample and methodology should be carefully scrutinized.

– Tina McCorkindale,  President and CEO, Institute for Public Relations

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