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Pollster: Don’t Pay Too Much Attention To Our Big Democratic Primary Poll

By  Eric Quintanar
PHILADELPHIA, PA - JULY 27: on the third day of the Democratic National Convention at the Wells Fargo Center, July 27, 2016 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton received the number of votes needed to secure the party's nomination. An estimated 50,000 people are expected in Philadelphia, including hundreds of protesters and members of the media. The four-day Democratic National Convention kicked off July 25.
Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Patrick Murray, director of the Monmouth University Polling Institute, has released a statement on Twitter saying that a Monmouth poll distributed earlier this week that made a lot of headlines, as it showed a three-way tie between former Vice President Biden and Sens. Bernie Sanders (D-VT) and Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), is “an outlier.”

Murray maintains that despite using “nearly identical samples to our prior polls” and following the “same methods” as six prior 2020 Democratic primary national polls, the anomalous results were “a product of the uncertainty inherent to the polling process.”

“I understood when we released our poll that the picture it painted diverged from others,” writes Murray. “We could have adjusted the weighting to comport with other polls or we could have simply sat on the numbers, but neither of those actions meet our standards for transparency and disclosure.”

The poll, which was released on Monday, showed Warren and Sanders polling at 20% and Biden polling at 19%.

Shortly after the poll was released, an official for the Biden campaign told the Washington Examiner that the poll shouldn’t be taken seriously because it was “an outlier.” John Anzalone, a pollster for the Biden campaign, told CBS News that “if you’ve been a pollster for a long time, you can smell funky data.”

The Biden campaign has seen its initial response to the polls justified by two more polls released on Wednesday. One poll, conducted by Quinnipiac University, shows Biden registering at 32% among Democratic and Democratic-leaning voters. Another poll, conducted by USA Today and Suffolk University, reaffirmed Biden’s 32% front-running status.

An Economist-YouGov poll also released Wednesday shows Biden leading the Democratic primary field with 24% support among people who say they will vote in a 2020 Democratic primary or caucus. Also notable, all three polls released on Wednesday show Warren leading Sanders.

The latest round of polls come as Wednesday’s midnight-deadline to qualify for the third Democratic primary debate looms. Currently, ten candidates have qualified, meaning the debate will be limited to a single night, according to CBS News.

Candidate Tom Steyer, who has been a mega-donor for the Democratic Party in the past, barely failed to qualify, reports the New York Times. Steyer entered the primary in July after the first Democratic debate had already taken place.

The next Democratic primary debate will be held on September 12 in Houston, Texas.

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