On Friday, Climate Realism uncovered and reported the absurd bias in a Colorado College poll claiming people in the Mountain West are very concerned about climate change and want more government action. In short, the poll surveyed more than twice as many Democrats as Republicans. Such a grossly skewed sampling made the poll results worse than meaningless – it made the results affirmatively misleading. Closer examination of the poll’s press release and asserted “bipartisan” methodology reveals additional bias and deliberately misleading results.
In a Colorado College press release promoting the poll, the college claims the poll is a “bipartisan survey, conducted by Republican pollster Lori Weigel of New Bridge Strategy” and a Democratic counterpart. However, Lori Weigel and New Bridge Strategy are anything but a counterpart to the Democratic pollster. Weigel may or may not claim to be a Republican, but she is a climate activist, working with the climate activist group Climate One. Also, Weigel’s New Bridge Strategy has an agenda of promoting renewable energy. In short, this is a poll conducted by people united in presenting a climate-activist narrative. That is not bipartisan, although Weigel’s climate activism certainly explains why a “Republican” would sanction a poll in a relatively conservative region of the country in which the poll surveyed more than twice as many Democrats as Republicans.
Somebody might argue that it is mere coincidence and happenstance that pollsters reached more than twice as many Democrats as Republicans, and perhaps they didn’t realize the partisan bias of the respondents when publishing the poll results. However, it would be quite remarkable to circumstantially reach more than twice as many Democrats as Republicans when randomly calling people in the Mountain West. Moreover, Colorado College admitted that they paid close attention to the comparative distribution of respondents and deliberately formulated the distribution of respondents when conducting and reporting the poll results.
According to the press release, “Pollsters intentionally sampled more Black, Latino, and Indigenous people than in previous years in order to get a more representative sense of equity concerns and to speak more confidently about the view of those communities, organizers said. Those responses were then proportionally weighted when added into aggregate responses.”
If pollsters intentionally sampled more Black, Latino and Indigenous people, and deliberately weighted particular groups into the aggregate response pool, they clearly would have been aware of the party affiliation of poll respondents and deliberately weighted them in the final results, as well.
Finally, Colorado College reveals the political nefariousness of the biased and misleading poll results when it quotes one of its directors saying policymakers should take aggressive climate action because of the results of the poll. “We are seeing strong voter concern for nature, which is translating into calls for bold action on public lands in the West,” said Katrina Miller-Stevens, Director of the Colorado College State of the Rockies Project in another accompanying press release. “If federal and state policy leaders are looking for direction on public lands, the view from the West is clear.”
In summary, the Colorado College poll is a deliberate effort to deceive policymakers and the general public about attitudes toward climate change in the Mountain West. The poll is not a bipartisan poll showing unified desire for more aggressive climate action, as Colorado College asserts. The poll, instead, merely (and without proper notice) reflects what Democrats desire. As such, the poll is a nefarious attempt to mislead policymakers into aggressive climate action by promoting an intentional lie about public opinion in the Mountain West.
[Photo of Colorado College stone sign courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.]
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