CBS News/YouGov Poll Showing Close Presidential Race in Texas Oversampled Democrats

Supporters of US President Donald Trump and of Democratic presidential nominee former Vice President Joe Biden hold signs as Trump's motorcade arrives at Trump National Golf Club in Sterling, Virginia, August 23, 2020. (Photo by SAUL LOEB / AFP) (Photo by SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)
SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images

A CBS News/YouGov poll released on Sunday that shows President Donald Trump leading Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden by just two points in Texas significantly oversampled Democrats.

Forty-eight percent of likely voters in Texas say they will vote for Trump, while 46 percent say they will vote for Biden, according to the poll.

Among the 1,140 likely voters identified as poll respondents, 417, or 36.6 percent, identified as Democrats; 410, or 35.9 percent, identified as Republicans; and 291, or 25.5 percent, identified as independents. The sample of likely voters was therefore basically Democrat +1.

The Cook Partisan Voter Index for the state of Texas, however, is Republican +8, which means the sample of 1,140 likely voters in the CBS/YouGov poll oversampled Democrats by a whopping nine percent.

The results of the CBS/YouGov poll are an outlier when compared with the Real Clear Politics Average of Polls, which showed President Trump with a 3.5 point lead over Biden on Saturday, until the inclusion of the CBS/YouGov poll lowered that lead to 2.3 points.

President Trump won the Lone Star State’s 38 electoral college votes in 2016 by a margin of nine points against Hillary Clinton, and keeping those important electoral college votes in 2020 is a necessity for the president’s reelection.

The presidential ballot poll results from 1,140 likely voters were derived from a poll of 1,161 registered voters in Texas conducted by CBS/YouGov between September 15 and September 18, which has a 3.5 percent margin of error.

Among those 1,161 poll respondents, 92 percent said they will either “definitely” or “probably” vote, four percent said they “maybe” will vote, two percent said they “probably” or “definitely” will not vote, and two percent said they did not know.

Presumably, then, based on this data, the sample size of likely voters was 1,068, or 92 percent of the 1,161 registered voters who were poll respondents. However, the crosstabs of the poll indicated that after weighting was applied, 1,140 total likely voters were identified.

The poll’s methodology used a sample weighting approach “according to gender, age, race, and education based on voter registration lists, the U.S. Census American Community Survey, and the U.S. Census Current Population Survey, as well as 2016 Presidential vote.”

In addition:

“Likely voters” – respondents’ relative probabilities of voting – were determined using a multilevel regression model that incorporates current, self-reported intentions to vote, along with individual-level and aggregate data about voters in Texas and nationwide, such as demographics and vote history. Respondents were selected to be representative of registered voters in Texas.

Among the weighted likely voter sample used in the presidential ballot test, the poll found that Republicans supported Donald Trump over Joe Biden by a 92 percent to five percent margin and independents supported Trump over Biden by a 50 percent to 36 percent margin.

Democrats supported Biden over Trump by a 92 percent to four percent margin.

Men supported Trump over Biden by a 53 percent to 40 percent margin, while women supported Biden over Trump by a 51 percent to 43 percent margin.

White voters supported Trump over Biden by a 63 percent to 31 percent margin, while Hispanic voters supported Biden over Trump by a 61 percent to 30 percent margin. Black voters supported Biden over Trump by an 86 percent to eight percent margin.

Younger voters overwhelmingly supported Biden, while older voters supported Trump.

Among likely voters age 18 to 29, Biden had 60 percent support to 29 percent for Trump. At the other end of the age spectrum, likely voters 65 years of age and older support Trump by a 60 percent to 38 percent margin.

Thirty- to 44-year-old voters favored Biden over Trump by a 52 percent to 38 percent margin, while voters age 45 to 64 favored Trump, 53 percent to 42 percent.


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