This article originally apeared at Free Republic and was posted by Thinkin' Gal, who had granted permission for it to be copied here.

**CBS POLL EXPOSED: 1175 Average Americans = 40% Dem, 35% Ind, 25% GOP?!!?!?!!?**

**07 January 1999 **
*T.G.*

Dear Freepers,

I hope you will not count this as a vanity post. After seeing the CBS poll that was posted by Marcellus this morning, I could not sit idle. First, here is the LINK - it will open in a new browser window.

The poll not only gives the overall percentages, it breaks down those percentages by political party. It also gives the number of participants: 1175. I'm very rusty on my algebra, but something told me I could solve this equation and figure out how many people of each party were polled. Using the information from the first question as an example:

**Do you approve or dissapprove of the way Bill Clinton
is handling his job as President?**

All | GOP | Dem | Ind | |

Approve | 69% | 43% | 87% | 67% |

Disapprove | 27% | 51% | 12% | 27% |

Don't know | 4% | 6% | 1% | 6% |

Totals | 1175 | x | y | z |

I converted these to formulas, and went back and forth solving for x (GOP), y (Dem), and z (Ind). I'll spare you the details, but I started with something like this (question no. 1 used as an example):

.69(1175) = .43x + .87y + .67z

.27(1175) = .51x + .12y + .27z

.04(1175) = .06x + .01y + .06z

1175 = x + y + z

It was further complicated by the fact that x, y, and z, are whole numbers, and the percentages could represent a different number of people. That is, 69% of 1175 people could statistically be be between 806 (68.6%) and 816 (69.4%). So I stuck with the true percentages when calculating, figuring I'd get statistically close! After a little trial and error, I determined that the following numbers worked out well (the totals held up when I analyzed other poll questions):

Apparantly, CBS has determined that a
representative sample of Americans is 40% Democrat, 35%
Independent, and 25% Republican. So that means you've got at
least 75% of the poll-takers as liberal, confused (not sure
exactly what "Independent" means here), brain-dead, or
all of the above. Now you * know* why
approval ratings stay so high!

Below is the breakdown of question no. 1, using my totals:

All | GOP (x) | Dem (y) | Ind (z) | |

Approve | .69(1175) | .43(290) | .87(472) | .67(413) |

Disapprove | .27(1175) | .51(290) | .12(472) | .27(413) |

Don't know | .04(1175) | .06(290) | .01(472) | .06(413) |

Totals | 1175 | 290 | 472 | 413 |

Again, the actual number of people may vary (per cell), but
they *statistically all match the percentage totals given on
the poll question.* And all total 1175. Here it is with the
math worked out:

All | GOP (x) | Dem (y) | Ind (z) | |

Approve | 813 | 125 | 411 | 277 |

Disapprove | 317 | 148 | 57 | 112 |

Don't know | 45 | 17 | 4 | 24 |

Totals | 1175 | 290 | 472 | 413 |

*Please note: I believe my numbers are very close if not
the same as the actual breakdown. However, considering the
problem with percentages - that they can represent different
numbers of people, and also that I checked several, but by no
means all of the poll questions, I could be slightly off in my
calculations.*

Of course, somebody around here can probably stick this data in some basic software, and come up with the answer in 30 seconds. However, since I have yet to see this type of analysis posted, and since the cry of "bogus poll" never ceases, I went and did it by hand. Hopefully you can see how I did it, and will jump right in and dissect more polls! LOL!

Geez, I hope I did this right... I'll probably hear about it otherwise!

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