READING THE FINAL POLLS
In the final days of the campaign, the polls will continue, with most major pollsters releasing their final estimate of the presidential horserace just before Election Day and prognosticators massaging them into their final projections. Typically, these last-chance estimates have converged as voters solidified their choices, but the massive storm that swept through the East Coast could complicate the picture for pollsters.
With millions of East Coast voters without power, voters in hard-hit states will be difficult to reach. And many ‘‘likely voters’’ could wind up not voting at all as they deal with the aftermath of the storm. Pollsters aiming to produce a final portrait of the race will have a hard time knowing for sure how big an impact the storm has had on the election forecast.
Before the storm, however, this year’s crop of polls had largely been in agreement that the race between Mitt Romney and Barack Obama was very close. Take the final round of public polling with a grain of salt and a pound of margin of error, and remember that polls are really just a snapshot in time.
EDITOR'S NOTE — Jennifer Agiesta oversees polling operations for The Associated Press.
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