… if you’re under 45. So says Frank Graves, president of EKOS research. Remember when all those polls were predicting the last election would end in a Harper minority? Remember how wrong those polls were? (I even posted about pollster prognostications here, here and here.)
Well, I remember how one of the big critiques of election polling that came up here and on other sites was that pollsters weren’t polling people who use cell phones; and, seeing as young people mostly use cell phones, their opinions weren’t being tallied and thus the polls were invalid.
Turns out, according Graves, the pollsters were polling cell phone users and that was their big mistake. Cell phone users — the majority being youngishy people — tend not to vote. Even the ones who, when polled, say they’re planning to.
Meanwhile, people over 45, many of whom still think a land line is a nifty invention, do vote. And lots of them like to vote Conservative.
By weighting a cell-phone response the same as a land-line response, EKOS and all the other polling firms wound up with massively skewed predictions. From the Globe and Mail article:
The proportion of Canadians who vote has always increased with age, but the differential has never been as great as it is now. In addition, the values gulf between young and old probably has never been greater. And the demographic skewing of the population – proportionately so many older people – is almost certainly unprecedented.
When Mr. Graves retraced his steps, he found that if under-45 Canadians had voted in the same proportion as over-45 Canadians, there would have been no Conservative majority but more likely an NDP-led coalition.
I don’t know about the rest of you but I voted. (I tried to vote twice. But apparently, in real life, when you take off your hat and glasses you can’t pass for a different person.) So where were the rest of you on election night, my under-45 peeps? Hunh? Whitworth can blame whoever it is he’s prone to blame. But looks like oldsters and dyed-in-the-wool Tories were voting the way they’ve always voted — and, more importantly, actually fucking voting. Nothing surprising or disappointing in any of that. Personally, I’m thinking that stern and reproachful gaze would be better directed towards my own damn demographic.
Thanks my cell-phone-using peers! Thanks for Harper! You didn’t vote for the government you deserve.