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Web site faulted by this blog for misreading Gallup poll on issue of guns does an abrupt about-face

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A couple of hours ago, I wrote HERE about several Web sites having misinterpreted a recent Gallup poll on which issues Americans see as most important to the country.

One of those Web sites, Mediaite, has WALKED BACK its nonsense about the Gallup poll (although clearly not in response to what I wrote):

“There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies, and statistics” goes the famous quote, and then there are polls. There’s a tendency to see what we want to in polls, a tendency that doesn’t often end well. Case in point: a Gallup poll that was cited on this website Wednesday to support the conclusion that “Only Politicians And The Media Care About Gun Control And Immigration.”

That conclusion, particularly where guns are concerned, is belied by several months of of Pew polls that show Americans are following, and have been following, the debate over guns more closely than any other news story. Can both polls be right?

The Gallup poll cited by my pal Noah Rothman did, indeed, place the issue of guns and gun control ninth on a list of issues, but does that mean that Americans don’t care about the issue? The poll asked respondents to volunteer what they thought was “the most important problem facing this country today,” and only allowed for a single response. Twenty-four percent answered “the economy,” but since they had no opportunity to give second or third answers, it doesn’t seem logical to conclude that they care only about the economy, and don’t care about anything else.

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10 Comments

  1. “Twenty-four percent answered “the economy,” but since they had no opportunity to give second or third answers, it doesn’t seem logical to conclude that they care only about the economy, and don’t care about anything else.”

    -No, but it clearly means that more Americans care the most about many things other than gun control. In fact the vast majority of Americans care the most about issues other than gun control.

  2. doc: Your argument still doesn’t refute the point made in the piece to which I linked: “Americans are following, and have been following, the debate over guns more closely than any other news story.”

    Of course, the point of my original post is that certain right-wing Web sites are completely full of crap when they say the Gallup poll shows that only 4 percent of Americans care about the gun issue. Dozens of wingnut blogs have made that argument.

  3. Except the poll could certainly guide our elected leaders to where they should spend their energy and political capital.

    It’s the economy stupid.

  4. Earth to expdoc: President Obama has made countless efforts to improve the economy and create jobs — only to be impeded at every turn by congressional Republicans, who readily admit that they don’t want him to succeed. These people put party ahead of country.

    Those are your people, doc. You must be so proud. Ah, the party of pseudo-patriots. History will not look kindly on them.

  5. My people? Hilarious. They are your people as much as they are my people.

    In fact, they are your people even more than they are my people since liberals are the ones who think all good solutions flow from government.

  6. Craig Knauss

    doc,

    Remember what TEA Party meant? “Taxed Enough Already”. Sound familiar?

    And where did “taxes” show up on that poll? 2% – tied for last place. And yet that’s what the GOP is constantly harping on. Why?

  7. Why would the majority of people put taxes at the top of their list? Half of the people pay no income tax at all.

  8. Brian Opsahl

    Doc,your arguing about what polls show as a point ,then turning around and saying they don’t count….which is it. You point out 24 % care about the economy, but if only 2% care about taxes and your party has taxes at the top of there list well hello…!!

    If you haven’t noticed the Democrats have spent most of there time trying to move bills through congress that promote jobs only to be told no by the Republicans.so now after these school murders they try this ….with the exact same results…Americans want one thing and Republicans do the opposite….AGAIN..!!

  9. Yet at least the Republicans have an economic reason for their position on taxes. Apparently the Democrats agree as they did not let the majority of Bush tax cuts expire.

    On the other hand the gun control issue has absolutely nothing to do with the economy unless you want to argue that the only reason the liberals are pursuing this issue above all else is because they want to boost gun sales.

  10. Brian Opsahl

    Of course they have an economic reason Doc: the mess that Bush left behind is now the Democrats problem and suddenly un-like the Bush years deficits now matter and according to some it’s all the Democrats fault. Raise revenue cut Government waste…
    Doc..how come Paul Ryan never stopped Bush once from spending our money…not once but now he acts like cutting Government is all the Republicans idea.

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