Scott Rasmussen editorial: Comparing Approval Ratings From Different Polling Firms

Scott Rasmussen:

A number of polling firms routinely measure the president’s job approval ratings. Generally, they all show a similar trend even when the specific numbers are different.

There are a number of reasons for this, including:

Likely Voters or Adults? – Some firms poll all adults while others, including Rasmussen Reports, base their results on likely voters. Generally speaking, polls of all adults will show a somewhat higher rating for President Obama than polls of likely voters.

Why is this? Primarily because some demographic groups such as young adults are less likely to vote than others. These same groups also happen to be segments of the population where the current president gets rave reviews. So if a poll of all adults shows the president’s approval rating at 60%, you’d expect a comparable poll of likely voters to show a rating of roughly 57%.

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