Conor’s inquiry prompts me to remind all of you about leaked exit polls. Most of my regular viewers have heard this screed before, but for those who have not, remember that leaked exit polls aren’t necessarily “inaccurate” – they are incomplete, and therefore unreliable indicators of the vote. I still recall the early exit polls that were leaked in 2004 – they had Kerry up – and my colleagues went delirious with joy despite my cautions. Of course, when Bush won, they assumed vote fraud. Nothing of the sort happened.
In the recent primaries, of course, the early exit polls almost always overstated Obama’s support. I’ve talked extensively why this is the case, so I trust I need not revisit the issue. Just remember that the raw exit numbers which come in waves are readjusted as the consortium running the polling adjusts for turnout. So Drudge may leak a first wave as early as 1 p.m. – pay no heed!