Rem Rieder | Brutal Night For Media Narrative

via USA Today:


News Media (200x200)Brutal Night For Media Narrative

by Rem Rieder | March 9 | 2016

It was a brutal night for the media narrative, the polls, the pundits, the conventional wisdom.

The Democratic presidential contest was pretty much over, the story went. Bernie Sanders had peaked, the Hillary Clinton juggernaut was in full command, Clinton would beat Sanders by 20 points in Michigan. Game over. Time for the party to unite and for Clinton to pivot toward the general election and the looming threat posed by Donald Trump.

Then, on Tuesday, those pesky voters got in the way.

Turns out Clinton’s double-digit lead in Michigan was gossamer. Sanders won the state, albeit narrowly, cutting into Clinton’s overwhelming lead with black voters while maintaining his dominance among young voters and prevailing among independents.

And Trump? All the establishment angst, the stop-Trump PACs, the Romney intervention, the agonized David Brooks columns can’t make him go away.

The Trumpmobile had little trouble navigating those establishment speed bumps. Trump went three for four, handily winning Michigan, Mississippi and Hawaii while Sen. Ted Cruz prevailed in Idaho.

As you may have noticed, this is not the first time that the media political narrative has been way off. There are a number of things at play here. One is the obsession with polls, the ubiquitous polls. This isn’t new, but there seem to be so many of them this time, and they play a — excuse the expression — huge role in shaping the analysis. They are valuable, but they are not gospel, as Michigan reminds us.

At best they are reflections of how people are thinking at a moment in time, not predictors of how things will play out. But it’s easy to forget that, and we often do. (Read More)


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