Pécresse already president… or the cracking of the polls

It makes you wonder why we still bother to organize an election. This Wednesday, December 8, in One, the Noon dispatch gave a preview of the result of the second round of the presidential election: ” Macron beaten by Pécresse “. Clairvoyance is not yet part of the talents of our colleagues, the latter actually refer to Elabe poll published on Tuesday afternoon by BFMTV and The Express, giving Emmanuel Macron beaten by the new candidate Les Républicains, Valérie Pécresse. A runaway reflecting the media’s intoxication with polls, despite a clear awareness of their limits.

On BFMTV, we brush aside these gazelle modesty: “ BFMTV SURVEY – Pécresse, up sharply in voting intentions, wins against Macron in the second round “, bombards the news channel continuously on Twitter. Live, the comments make the mayonnaise rise: “ This poll is going to be a thunderboltwe exclaim on the set of Alain Marschall and Olivier Truchot. It’s a clap of thunder, a shock, an electric shock! A storm, a hurricane, a tsunami! The conclusion is all found: If this second round took place next Sunday, it is Valérie Pécresse who would win and who would therefore be the next President of the Republic. For prudence, we will come back.

The president of the honorable Elabe Institute, Bernard Sananès, is invited to comment on these results. Attention, breaking open doors: “ The appointment of Valérie Pécresse upsets the already quite fragile balance of this campaign. His eruption after his designation in the field of candidates recorded a spectacular push. She was only one of five candidates when we tested her a fortnight ago. ” Not possible ! ” She embodies novelty “, even dares the pollster about the president of the Île-de-France region (since 2015), honorary deputy, former government spokesperson under Nicolas Sarkozy and former Minister of Higher Education and then of the budget. You have to furnish well…

READ ALSO :“She will forget me”: when Ciotti wants a place in the sun at Pécresse

The important thing is not so much to have nothing to say, but that everyone talks about it. And it’s successful: from franceinfo to CNews, everyone is doing their own thing. ” The president of the Île-de-France region takes full advantage of the “primary” effect by gaining 11 points compared to the previous study by this institute carried out on November 23 and 24 “, we learn about the public service. ” The shares of voting intentions credited to Valérie Pécresse are constantly rising, as evidenced by a recent survey. A serious competitor “, congratulates himself Point. ” The momentum continues on the right “, analysis Le Figaro

The good score… almost

The fragility of these investigations is however not unknown to these media. Luc Bronner, senior reporter at World, recently showed its flawsby registering in several panels of pollsters under false identities to answer more than 200 questionnaires. Marianne also contributed its stone to the criticism of the polls at the beginning of November: too wide a margin of error, panels of volunteers interested in public life thus distorting the abstentionist phenomenon, “adjustment” of the results according to demographic and political data supposed to ensure the representativeness of the population sample considered… the possible biases for polls are legion.

READ ALSO :Everything you always wanted to know about surveys but were afraid to ask

That of Elaba is no exception to the rule: The survey was carried out on the internet on December 6 and 7, 2021, after Valérie Pécresse’s victory at the LR congress and after the meetings of Éric Zemmour and Jean-Luc Mélenchon on Sunday. It is based on a sample of 1,474 people representative of residents of mainland France aged 18 and over, including 1,354 registered on the electoral lists, according to the quota method. The margin of error is between 1.2 and 3.1 percentage points “explains its notice. For a score of 20% – the one that Valérie Pécresse would collect in the first round – the margin of error is “ plus or minus 2.5% “. According to Elabe, his score has a 95% chance of being between 17.5 and 22.5%. Suffice to say that, in such an open presidential election, this can mean everything and its opposite.

Even more, according to the pollsters themselves, when all the candidates are not yet known: ” Once the candidates are set, we are much more serene and our data is rarely far from the final results. one of them explained to us recently. But it is still very early in the campaign, and the final casting is not known. Emmanuel Macron did not run, and some candidates, like Éric Zemmour, are not yet sure of obtaining the 500 sponsorships necessary to stand for election. We will not insult pollsters by recalling their past mistakes six months before the presidential election. Just remember that François Fillon was supposed to fly to the Elysee after the primary of the right.

“Important reservations”

The media seem quite aware of the limits of the exercise, which has already shown its limits in France and abroad. Thus we read, in the article devoted to the survey by Release: “ We are going to congratulate ourselves, at LR, on these results, the interpretation of which still calls for significant reservations. Made in the wake of the LR primary, at a time when all the spotlight was on its winner, they do not deliver the same results. If they reflect the state of opinion at the time of their realization, they do not predict the result of the presidential election. »

The Express himself, though sponsor of the survey, does not seem to believe it entirely. ” The right-wing candidate gains 11 points from previous polls. If it progresses within all age groups, it should be noted that this surge is to be qualified: only half of the potential voters of Valérie Pécresse are today certain of their choice (54%) “, specifies the weekly. Before recalling that to date, only ” 57% of voters say they are definitely going to vote in the 2022 presidential election, and 25% are seriously considering it “.

READ ALSO :Sample, hidden RN vote, crash… “Marianne” investigated the factory of the polls

Jérôme Sainte-Marie, president of PollingVox, recently told Marianne: “ Pollsters run the risk of creating a partly artificial situation, when people are asked who they are going to vote for when they do not care at all. The race of small horses implied by the polls is perhaps not for nothing in this state of affairs.

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Pécresse already president… or the cracking of the polls

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