November 4th, 2008
07:29 PM ET
6 years ago

Should we trust exit polls?

 Sen. John Kerry (D-MA).
Sen. John Kerry (D-MA).

(CNN) – Remember the exit polls during the Bush-Kerry race?

Ask President Kerry how much faith we should put on exit polls.

Point: If the exit polls are as wrong this year as they were four years ago, we might expect to see a closer race in some battleground states than people suspect. May not be enough to turn the electoral map upside down, but stay tuned.


Filed under: Exit Polls
soundoff (143 Responses)
  1. Barbara in NC

    Obama/Biden '08

    Karl Rove himself said so – ha ha ha ha ha ha ha And he is the great FIXER from 2000 and 2004

    November 4, 2008 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  2. nate b

    i dont, and think it's stupid that CNN is projecting based on exit polls. give me a freaking break, stop trying to be the first to be wrong

    November 4, 2008 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  3. analysis

    The issue in some areas was not the accuracy of the exit polls, which have historically been extremely accurate; it was the accuracy of the voting machines, which experts have historically said are far too easy to tamper with. Additionally, there were cases of cities where far more people voted than were registered. 2004 was a dirty election; and I don't expect 2008 to be different.

    November 4, 2008 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  4. ANONYMOUS

    People just vote fair. This world is lost. Remember GOD is coming back and a lot of these manipulative people will have a lot of questions to answer.

    November 4, 2008 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  5. Courtney

    Exit polls are a good tool for estimating, however the only accurate result will come at the end of the race when all of the votes are counted. Even if some of them are fraudulent.

    November 4, 2008 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  6. Caitlin B

    Honestly? No. Just wait for the votes to be tallied.

    November 4, 2008 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  7. Angela Naugle, NS Canada

    This is crazy, if McCain wins- it means the election was stolen again. It should be a landslide for Obama, what the heck is going on?!

    November 4, 2008 07:33 pm at 7:33 pm |
  8. Exit polls are bunk!

    After the Kerry debacle, never gonna trust em again

    November 4, 2008 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  9. Garrett

    It's true, who is going to walk out of voting in Oklahoma to declare "I voted Obama!"

    November 4, 2008 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  10. Tiaunia

    You can at least get a general idea but to put all your faith into it would be foolish. As mentioned Kerry lost or should I say it was taken!! Go figure

    November 4, 2008 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  11. Tat

    Published exit polls indirectly influence polls that have not yet closed. It's human nature to pick what everyone says is the winning choice, regardless of merit.

    Gary the voter in California, "I really don't know who to choose, but they say is Obama winning out east, so I guess I should vote for him!"

    November 4, 2008 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  12. Mike

    You guys are crap, calling an election before the polls close!

    November 4, 2008 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  13. Bob Topley

    Your exit polls are useless unless you include the exit polls from the "advance voters",

    November 4, 2008 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  14. Steven

    I heard that the early voting tallies may not be loaded in to the initial exit polls, can you at CNN verify that?

    November 4, 2008 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  15. yeah right...

    Exit polls are never wrong. Thats why we use them in other countries to make sure there isn't fraud or coruption. So when our own polls are "wrong" it also indicates there is fraud or coruption. Why don't you release the ORIGINAL exit poll data from 2004? In almost every case they were "wrong", it ended up favoring Bush. The chances of that happening randomly and naturally are very slim.

    November 4, 2008 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  16. Alan

    I chose to ignore those polls (besides, who's conducting them anyway), and cast my vote, not for a coward, a liar, a reverse racist and yes, an anti-Semite in favor of a REAL American patriot and hero who has served this country.

    And yes, while I do live in Arizona and have often disagreed with him, I know he will defend this country – he has already done so. His opponent? He only defends bigots, America-haters, Jew and Christian baiters.

    My vote did NOT go to Barry Hussein Obama.

    My vote went to the next President of the United States, John Sidney McCain.

    November 4, 2008 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  17. Mary, Dublin, Ireland

    sure we should believe the exit polls... when they tell us what we want to hear :)

    November 4, 2008 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  18. Lambo4Life

    landslide for obama? come on now! more people keep their opinions to themselves than say their opinion out loud...and it obvious who is running for the popularity contest vs. political issues

    November 4, 2008 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  19. Thomas R Love

    Exit polls are the gold standard when the U.N. monitors an election. If the exit polls and the reported results disagree, it is a sure indication of fraud. It wasn't the exit polls which were wrong 4 years ago!

    November 4, 2008 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  20. Judi Walker

    I don't trust exit polls. I think instead of the media projecting winners based on exit polls, they should wait until the votes are counted! Does anyone remember the famous photo of Harry Truman holding the paper that read "Dewey Defeats Truman"? I think that Fox called the wrong winner a few years ago, didn't they?

    November 4, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  21. Mike

    The news polls where they want. It allows them to slant the reporting so that it's stories lean the direction the station wants.

    November 4, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  22. john Wiley

    When exit polls are consistently wrong, does that not mean that the election is rigged?

    November 4, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  23. Tracy in MD

    Polls don't mean a blessed thing. CNN and other networks should refrain from calling ANY race until the majority of the votes are COUNTED. That's exactly how they made a mess of their Election Day coverage for the past two cycles. And they STILL haven't learned their lesson!!

    How about a little bacon to go with that EGG on your face, CNN?

    November 4, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  24. jeremy

    exit polls are a great tool for the democratic media to influence those uninformed voters. Hey everybody--jump on the bandwagon and vote for Obama-–don't worry about how he's gonna tax the hell out of everyone or not do a thing to fix healthcare or that he likes to give people the choice to kill unborn children. He's a great guy, look at the exit pools....they say so

    November 4, 2008 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  25. Dawn

    No, people will say all kinds of things just to be spiteful or contrary. Sadly, its been the case, in Florida & Ohio that you can't even trust actual votes! It is my fervent hope that this election be as factual a reflection of our votes as humanly possible. I hope that we are not subjected to months of investigations into the vote tampering we have experienced in last few elections!

    November 4, 2008 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
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