Strength in Numbers: How Polls Work and Why We Need Them
An insightful exploration of political polling and a bold defense of its crucial role in a modern democracy. After the 2016 and 2020 elections, harsh critiques of polling were blasted everywhere: in news headlines, on social media, and among colleagues and friends. But this rush to declare polling irrelevant is misguided—and dangerous. In Strength in Numbers, data journalist G. Elliott Morris urges readers to recognize how polling shapes and sustains democracy. He illuminates how public opinion polls provide a voice for citizens and influence such crucial matters as a party’s selection of presidential candidates. He guides readers through a vibrant history of polling to provide insider context, explains how polls have been misused and misinterpreted, and demonstrates how we have underestimated their potential impact. He also candidly acknowledges where polls have fallen short and charts a path for the industry’s future where it can truly work for the people. Persuasively argued and deeply researched, Strength in Numbers implores all those who believe in democracy not to give up on polls, but to fully understand them.