Is The “Cell Phone Effect” Lowballing Obama’s Numbers?

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Do pollsters who don’t call cell phones make the election look closer than it actually is? Polling maven Nate Silver of FiveThirtyEight.com thinks so. The traditional assumption is that young, cell-phone-only voters probably lean heavily toward Obama. It turns out that the four national polls that include cell phones in their samples are also the four polls that have him with the largest margins of victory. He charted it for you, too (after the jump):

cellphone-chart.png

The yellow bars are polls with cell phones in their samples. Nate’s said all along that there is a statistically significant cell phone effect. Read all his posts on it. He’s pretty convincing. (I interviewed Nate Silver in August for MoJo Video. We talked about polling, naturally. You can find the interview here.)

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And right now, we need to raise about $400,000 from our online readers over the next two months to hit our annual goal and make good on that mission. Read more about the information war we find ourselves in and how people-powered, independent reporting can and must rise to the challenge—and please support our team's truth-telling journalism with a donation if you can right now.

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