Hillary Clinton’s resurgent victory in New Hampshire has many pollsters confused and scratching their heads.
To quote ABC’s polling director Gary Langer:
“It is simply unprecedented for so many polls to have been so wrong. We need to know why,”
It seems that the Diebold machines were inappropriately granting votes to Clinton and Guiliani and taking votes away from Ron Paul. Hand ballots in the democratic race track Obama as a 2% winner over Clinton, suggesting that the voting machines gave her a 5% bump.
Guiliani seemed to receive a 0.5% bump to place above Ron Paul whose electronic votes tracked 2% lower than hand ballots allowing Guiliani to avoid a second primary embarassment that should have ended his campaign. The cost of a recount is apparently only $67,000. In an election where $2 Billion plus is being spent on presidential campaigns, $67k seems like a pittance to ensure that our democracy is not being hijacked, though it appears unlikely that either Obama or Paul will press for a recount.
Pragmatists will suggest that since independent voters in New Hampshire can vote for either primary, makes any poll data unreliable. Rasmussen evaluates the arguments suggesting voter behavior as the culprit for the the polling data/actual results discrepancies. His conclusions support the pragmatic theory, but cannot account for the discrepancy between the hand count and the machine count.