Metropolitik: What’s bringing Obama down?

Is Obama’s popularity on the decline, or is there some other reason for the polling drop? Let us know what you think at letters@metro.us.

For complaints, suggestions and digital attaboys, e-mail us at brayden.simms@metro.us.

As Republicans fought to win over Southern hearts and minds Tuesday, a pair of polls pointed toward a dramatic slide in support for President Obama, setting the Interwebs on fire with theories, complaints and cheers.

A New York Times and CBS News poll, the more drastic of the two, showed that the president’s approval rating had dropped to a 2012 low of 41 percent, down a precipitous 9 percent from the same organizations’ February poll. The apparent drop puts a crimp in the emerging narrative, as of the new year, that a handful of positive economic reports  had put Obama on track to improve his numbers and take the election in November.

Of course, the report set off the race to find out why exactly this poll decline had occurred. From the left, Jonathan Chait at New York Mag claimed a change in Obama’s rhetoric (specifically, use of the phrase “America is back”) might be to blame. On the right, The Daily Caller found a possible culprit in the ongoing national debate on reproductive freedom, which reporter Mickey Kaus perceived Democrats as clearly losing. There were many others: Political scientist Jonathan Bernstein attributed it to statistical noise, while the Post fingered a rise in gas prices.

But for our tastes, it doesn’t get much clearer than the revelation, brought to our attention by the good people at The People’s View, that the population samples between the two NYT/CBS polls diverged in one telling way:?The latter one included far more Republican primary voters, a group of people much likelier to oppose President Obama than the average voter.

Perhaps the takeaway is simply that polling — that great headline-generating beast — is actually widely misused and poorly understood. (Have any of our readers ever been polled? We haven’t.)?Expect more on this in the future.

Follow Brayden Simms on Twitter @metropolitik


News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Rapper affiliate of Wu-Tang Clan 'cuts off own…

Rapper Andre Johnson, who has performed with New York outfit the Wu-Tang Clan, is in a critical condition after reportedly cutting off his own penis…

National

Cleavage complaint: Disneyland staffer orders curvy mom to…

A curvy mom-of-three says she filed a formal complaint after staff at Disneyland Resort in California ordered her to cover up her boobs. Melissa Behnken,…

International

Canadian charged in 'Heartbleed' attack on tax agency

OTTAWA (Reuters) - Canadian police have arrested a 19-year-old man and charged him in connection with exploiting the "Heartbleed" bug to steal taxpayer data from…

National

Every dog has his day in court, in…

(Reuters) - Call him juror K-9.A computer glitch is likely to blame for a summons that called a German Shepherd to report for jury duty,…

Television

‘Survivor: Cagayan’ recap: Episode 8

Sure, it's called Survivor. But this season should really be called 'The Tony Show.'

Television

Jim Rash talks 'The Writer's Room' and amazing…

For Jim Rash, as the fifth season of "Community" comes to a close, the second season of "The Writer's Room" begins.

Television

'Dexter' star Jennifer Carpenter moves into producing role

The actress who played the title character's sister in "Dexter" is teaming up with producer George Stelzner to adapt Erika Hayasaki's book "The Death Class:…

The Word

Wahlburgers announce North America domination

Tuesday was a huge day for Donnie Wahlberg.

NBA

Kris Humphries on free agency, future with Celtics:…

Kris Humphries on free agency, future with Celtics: 'I hope to be back'

NBA

Celtics turn attention to NBA Draft, improve lottery…

Celtics turn attention to NBA Draft, improve lottery odds with loss

NFL

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

2014 NFL Mock Draft: Updated, new April version

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: A's are baseball's best, Brewers…

MLB Power Rankings: A's are baseball's best, Brewers and Braves right behind

Wellbeing

This Week in Health: chocolate may prevent obesity…

Can chocolate prevent obesity and diabetes? Location of study: U.S. Study subjects: Mice Results: The positive health benefits of chocolate have been studied increasingly more…

Wellbeing

This Week in Health News: breastfed infants trying…

Are breastfed infants trying to prevent mom from having another baby? Theory: The act of breastfeeding not only brings mom and baby closer together –…

Wellbeing

Unexplained infertility may be caused by lack of…

Researchers have identified a protein on the egg's surface that interacts with another protein on the surface of sperm, allowing the two cells to join.

Tech

5 surprising facts about Google Glass

Your sex life could get more interesting.