One of the most popular features of Mike Kinsley’s New Republic, when I was just a fluffy little chicklet in the same intern pit as Jake Weisberg, was his ability to show spin in various newspapers that had completely opposite-meaning headlines for the exact same story. So today, from Politico, we get the following:
The lead was tiny: 49 – 48, but a sign of movement back to the president of around 3 points since the last one. But from the Weekly Standard’s Fred Barnes, we get this:
Of course, I thought – silly me – that there must have been two battleground tracking polls and they were just showing different results. Nope. This is exactly the same poll. It turns out that Fred Barnes just outright ignored the actual top-line results and extracted the more subjective of Republican analyst’s (Ed Goeas) take on them (in a memo [PDF] sent out to GOPers), based on much more subjective ideas of the intensity of the vote – as conducted in a snap poll for their model on one day. The trouble is, many of those with the most dedication to vote for Obama have already voted, because of his GOTV operation, and so that intensity advantage of the GOP is more an artefact of that. At least that’s one interpretation:
“The reason why you saw the intensity pop toward the Republicans into the double digits this week is because [Democrats are] taking away their high intensity voters [through early voting]. What we’re seeing in the data is indicative of that cannibalization.”
Who explained that? Ed Goeas, the man Barnes is citing for his headline. The egregiousness of the propaganda is even enough for TWS to post an update, explaining the weird headline and even weirder propaganda.
Readers are hereby invited to send in any headlines from left or right that contradict each other about the same set of facts or event – or that contradict the actual, you know, evidence cited in the story.