Tom Webster on Podcasting’s Biggest Mistake

Edison Research Senior Vice President Tom Webster speaks often on podcasting and the trajectory of the medium, and his recent trip to Podcast Movement Evolutions inspired him to consider what could loom as Podcasting’s Biggest Mistake.

Yes, podcasting sprang from the loins of radio — so stipulated. But over the course of about 11 years, from 2004 to 2014, it became its own dog. There was no Big Podcasting. You might quibble about NPR/This American Life, but really, the audience sizes were nowhere near where they are today, so it’s hard to think of anyone in the first 11 years of podcasting as Big Podcasting.

Podcasting didn’t start in control of the monied few and gradually become democratized. Podcasting started as a democracy, and now faces the incursion of the monied few.

Click here to read the rest of  Tom Webster’s Podcasting’s Biggest Mistake on Medium.

 

 

The New Hampshire Democratic Primaries – How They Won and Lost

By Sarah Dutton

The New Hampshire Democratic Primary electorate is overwhelmingly angry with the Trump administration (79%) and a majority is focused on candidates’ electability (63%) over issue positions (33%), according to Edison Research exit polls. 

The final vote tallies for the top three candidates – Sanders, Buttigieg and Klobuchar – showed a close race, and in the final days, a fluid one. There were twice as many “late deciders” – voters who made up their minds which candidate to support in the days leading up to Election Day – this year as in 2016; 51% of the electorate said they decided who to vote for on election day or in the last few days leading up to it, compared to 25% in 2016.  

Among those who decided on election day or in the last few days before election day, 28% supported Pete Buttigieg, and nearly as many – 26% – voted for Amy Klobuchar. Voters who made their minds up earlier in the race supported Sanders.

Both Buttigieg and Klobuchar had good news heading into the New Hampshire Democratic Primary: Buttigieg won the most state delegates in the Iowa caucuses, and Klobuchar was widely considered to have done well in the most recent Democratic debate.  The New Hampshire exit poll provides more evidence of the boost Klobuchar may have gotten from last Friday’s debate; 49% of voters said the recent debate was an important factor in their vote choice, and she won this group with 29%.

Perceptions of the candidates’ qualities also contributed to the strong showings by Sanders, Buttigieg and Klobuchar. Among the 36% of voters who said they want a candidate who can bring needed change, Sanders was their choice, with 37%.  A third said that a candidate that can unite the country was most important to them, and Klobuchar won them with 33%, followed by Buttigieg with 29%.   

Sanders won with strong support from voters under 30 (47%), the most liberal wing of the party (46%) and new voters (29%). 

Sanders, Buttigieg and Klobuchar took the top three spots in the final vote tally. What happened to two of the other frontrunning candidates, Joe Biden and Elizabeth Warren?  

Biden’s arguments about why he should be the nominee just didn’t connect with these voters. He has emphasized his foreign policy experience but came in third (20%) to Buttigieg (27%) and Klobuchar (23%) among voters who chose it as the most important issue in their vote (just 11% did so).  

Among the four in ten voters who want to see a return to the policies of his former boss President Barack Obama, 28% voted for Buttigieg and 26% for Klobuchar, with Biden in third place at 15%.  

And finally, Biden did poorly on one of his strongest arguments to voters, electability; among the 63% of voters focused on beating Trump in November, just 10% chose him as their candidate, after Buttigieg (28%), Sanders (21%), Klobuchar (21%) and Warren (11%). 

Warren did poorly with most demographic groups, coming in near the bottom of the field among both women and men, young voters under 30 and voters 65 or older, and Independents.  Thirty percent of white college-educated women voted for Klobuchar, twice the percentage that voted for Warren (15%). As a progressive candidate, she did better among very liberal voters (19%) but came in a distant second to Sanders (46%). 

There is plenty of additional data to mine from the New Hampshire exit poll – more noteworthy data nuggets to come! 

AFTER THE 2020 IOWA DEMOCRATIC CAUCUSES 

By Sarah Dutton

The Iowa caucuses are over (ish) and the candidates have moved on to New Hampshire, the next contest in the race for the Democratic nomination.  But as the first nominating contest, the entrance polls from the Iowa caucuses can offer some insights into potential trends among the electorate. How did electability factor into vote choice? Did voting patterns match assumptions about which demographic groups back each candidate? Did last minute campaigning have an impact on vote choice? Here are some takeaways from the Edison Research entrance polls, completed as voters went into their caucus locations. 

Electability mattered to nearly two in three caucus goers. These Democratic voters clearly prefer a candidate who can beat Donald Trump in November (61%) over one who agrees with them on the issues (37%). But Iowa voters who prioritize beating President Trump did not coalesce around one candidate who they view as most electable; similar percentages chose Buttigieg (24%) and Biden (23%).  Among the smaller percentage of voters who prefer a candidate with whom they agree on the issues, 36% chose Sanders.  

Moderates and liberals support different candidates, continuing a trend observed in Iowa in 2016.  In 2016, Clinton won moderate and conservative voters by 20 points, while Sanders won most of those who described themselves as very liberal by about the same amount – 19 points.  This year, very liberal voters once again supported Sanders (43%), followed by Elizabeth Warren (28%), while moderate and conservative voters evenly split their votes between Joe Biden (25%) and Pete Buttigieg (25%).  

There is also a gap between moderates and liberals on health care policy. While all three ideological groups chose health care as the most important issue in their vote, they disagreed on how health care policy should be structured.  Nearly nine in ten very liberal caucus goers support replacing private health insurance with a single government plan for everyone, and a majority of voters who are somewhat liberal agree. But support drops to only 35% of moderate/conservative voters. 

Sanders’ supporters overwhelmingly back replacing private health care with a government run system (92%). 

Late deciders broke for moderate candidates. Voters who decide on a candidate just before an election can make a difference in the results;  “late deciders” helped elect Donald Trump in November 2016, and gave Hillary Clinton a boost before the 2008 New Hampshire primary. In the Iowa caucuses this year, Joe Biden and Pete Buttigieg benefitted from the support of these late deciders; among those who made up their minds who to support on the day of the caucuses, Biden received 24% of their support and Buttigieg 21%. Sanders’ voters had made their minds up much earlier in the race; 64% of Sanders’ voters say they made up their minds before January. 

The age gap that was evident in pre-election polls was confirmed in the Iowa entrance polls. Voters under 30 backed Sanders (48%) over the other candidates by a sizable margin, and while his support was larger among this group in 2016, there are far more candidates in the race this year.  Voters age 65 and over backed Biden. And at 24%, these under-30 voters made up a larger share of the vote than in 2016 (18%) and 2008 (22%). Four in five Sanders’ supporters were under age 45.

 

 

 

 

 

Firsttime voters weren’t the force they have been in the past. There were fewer new voters, that is, those participating in a caucus for the first time, this year compared to past Iowa caucuses. Only 37% said this was their first time caucusing, down from 44% in 2016 and 57% in 2008. And while first-timers heavily supported Sanders in 2016, this year he wasn’t the only candidate who brought firsttime voters to the caucuses: 31% supported Sanders, and another 25% supported Buttigieg. 

Pete Buttigieg, who spent large blocks of time campaigning in Iowa, had a good night. While Buttigieg won few demographic groups outright, he ran well among many of them. He won among women (24%), and came in second to Sanders among men (21%). He came in second – again to Sanders – among voters under 45 and won those age 45 to 64. He won college graduates with 23% of the vote, and came in second among those without a college degree. Buttigieg tied Biden for the top spot among moderate/conservative voters (25%), and tied Sanders (24%) with those voters who said health care was the top issue in their vote choice. 

The Iowa caucus process benefits candidates who can hit the 15% threshold in the most precincts, and Buttigieg’s broad appeal among various demographics in the entrance poll helped him here too.  According to the latest results from the Iowa Democratic Party, Pete Buttigieg reached the 15% threshold in more than 80% of the precincts across the state, more than any other candidate. 

Next up –  New Hampshire, the first primary, to see whether these trends continue. 

By Cindy Axne - https://www.facebook.com/pg/RepCindyAxne/, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=85094174

Edison Research Conducts Entrance Polls on Iowa Caucus Night

On Monday, February 3, Edison Research successfully conducted entrance polling for the Iowa Caucuses on behalf of the National Election Pool (NEP). Edison interviewed over 1600 voters at randomly-selected caucus sites.

The Edison Research entrance polls provided valuable context to the nation’s first political contest of the 2020 election cycle. Our network clients relied upon the information obtained from these entrance polls to provide valuable content and insight throughout the entire evening of the Iowa Caucuses.

Edison’s entrance polls were used to determine key information from voters, including demographic data, important issues and the “electability” of the various candidates. Edison’s election team captured, processed and analyzed thousands of data points within the short duration of the caucuses and enabled our member clients and subscribers real-time access to in-depth analysis of the Iowa results.

Full coverage of our entrance polls can be found here:

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Which Generation will show up at the Caucuses?

By Sarah Dutton

With the 2020 Iowa Democratic caucuses just days away, anticipation is mounting about which candidate will emerge as the victor. And as with any election contest, turnout will be a critical factor in the outcome – a reflection of which candidate was able to motivate their supporters to come out and caucus.

It’s always a challenge for pollsters to estimate turnout when they create their polling models of likely voters, and those turnout estimates may affect which candidate the polls show in the lead.  Just days before the caucuses, some polls show Joe Biden leading, while others show Bernie Sanders ahead. And the margin by which these candidates lead the field varies as well.  There is a history of surprises in Iowa as well, so no one should be counted out entirely. How many people turn out to vote, and who they are, will determine the winner.

As of this writing, many of those involved in the Democratic campaigns and Iowa election officials expect sizable turnout this year.  In 2016, participation in the Iowa caucuses was around 170,000 voters. But in 2008, turnout for the Democratic caucuses in Iowa reached record levels; 239,000 voters came out to participate in the caucuses that year. Some political observers expect even higher turnout this year than in 2008.

But which types of voters attend the caucuses – young or old; Democrats, independents or even Republicans (Iowa’s Democratic caucuses are open, meaning anyone can participate);  moderate or liberal; urban, rural – will also influence how well the candidates fare and who prevails.Past Iowa entrance polls conducted by Edison Research provide some helpful data – but keep in mind that past results aren’t necessarily predictors of future results, and turnout could differ this year.  In 2008, Barack Obama was the winner of the Democratic caucuses. That year, Obama won among liberals, but he also won moderates, who were 40% of the electorate. Young voters – nearly a quarter of the electorate – also helped propel Obama to his victory. And first-time caucusgoers made up more than half the electorate in 2008; Obama won a 41% plurality of them.

Overall turnout for the Iowa Democratic caucuses was lower in 2016, and Bernie Sanders ran a very close second to Hillary Clinton, the winner that year. Clinton won among women in 2016, and she also won among voters age 65 and over, who made up a greater share of the electorate in 2016 than in 2008.  Sanders’ strong showing can be attributed to the younger, more liberal faction of the electorate. Although there were fewer younger voters than in 2008, Sanders won them by a very lopsided 84% to 14% for Clinton. (By comparison, in 2008 57% of voters under 30 supported Obama.)  The 2016 electorate was also more left-leaning than in 2008; two in three were liberal, including 28% who described themselves as very liberal, up from 18% in 2008.  Sanders won the very liberal voters by nearly twenty points.