Thursday, September 25, 2014

The Scots Say “No” and Polls Get it Right

The final Ipsos/MORI poll, a British gold standard, called the race 47 percent “yes” and 54 percent “no” and a 6-point difference Wednesday night. The result was 10 points.

Men and younger voters were more in favor. It was a battle with a lot of emotion between the heart and the wallet, with women and older voters believing the change involved too much risk.

The independence movement appears to have many aspects of the sentiment seen throughout the developed world that is anti-establishment and, in this case, anti-Westminster.

Most of the polls said independence would lose. Several theories were offered for why the “no” vote was underestimated:

Late deciders. The common experience in ballot initiatives is late deciders stay with the status quo. Also, some voters may say they support independence (i.e., change), but pull back when looking over the cliff (bungee jump; i.e., the no jump vote).

Shy voters. Some voters are not willing to tell pollsters they plan to vote against independence.

Turnout. There appeared to be some fall off in turnout among independence supporters.

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