WHILE POLLS HAVE been used in political campaigns since the early 1930s, major advances in technology have resulted in accurate polling that affects nearly every aspect of elections in the United States. By taking a relatively small sample of the public, pollsters are able to predict winners of most elections even before a single ballot is cast. Political polls also serve the dual purposes of informing political candidates about public opinion and providing politicians with “hot button” issues that need to be addressed. Once elected, politicians can use polls to gauge public reaction to policies and to follow public approval/disapproval of job performance. While media, academicians, and independent polling organizations conduct regular polls, political candidates also hire their own pollsters, who often serve as formal ...

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