That MFI Poll Is a Joke

(Editors note: the ages Joe is citing are wrong. The poll asked what year were you born, not what age. The demographics are in line with U.S. Census bureau statistics as found on  See my comment below for the explanation.)

Hate to break it to you folks, but y’all been swindled.  

I know many of you here probably don’t have a high opinion of BMG, but being a frequent commentator there, I’ve had it drilled into my head that when it comes to polls, READ THE CROSSTABS.

Those crosstabs, which are available here have a very telling factoid that shows the results are very, very flawed, and skewed in a manner to oppose same sex marriage.  

flip it.

It’s no secret that there is a very clear difference in opinion regarding same sex marriage between the various age cohorts.  Almost every poll you read on this subject that shows them in the crosstabs, the older you are, the more likely you are to oppose SSM.  An excellent poll with a fantastic graph is here which illustrates my point well.  

If you notice, the support for SSM is very low among the 65+ crowd.  Go ahead and google all the SSM polls you want.  Same story.  Older folks don’t support it.  That’s why I was so shocked to see the age cohorts in this MFI Poll.  

18-50:  20%

51-60:  22%

61-75:  30%

76+  :  24%

From the crosstabs, we find that 54% of the whopping 306 poll respondents are age 61 or older.  Considering that only 13% of the population is actually in this age bracket, this is a ridiculous percentage to have.  

This doesn’t need to be hashed out any more.  The poll is a joke.  By skewing the age groups responding to this question, the polling company was able to come up with polling results that very soundly defeat SSM.  

So yes, if the State was comprised of a population that was more than half age 61 and older, then opposition to SSM would be politically wise.

However, it would be way more politically wise to read the crosstabs of a poll so you know when someone is bullshitting you.  

About JoeTS

  • A valid point.

    I would add that people over the age of 60 are not 13% of the voters.  People age 0-18 are 24.5% of the population and 0% of them are eligible to vote.  

    Secondly, the average age in Massachusetts is higher than it is in other states.  National demographics aren’t the same when you go state by state.  If they were we should be using national polls with regard to the gay marriage issue here.  We both know that isn’t the right way to go.

    For those of the legal voting age seniors vote in much higher percentages.  THe voter demographics for liekly voters in Massachusetts are different from total population statistics nationwide.

    It’s unlikely that that percentage is 54%, but it isn’t 13% either.

  • Rob “EaBo Clipper” Eno

    22. In what year were you born?

    20% 18-50

    22% 51-60

    30% 61-75

    24% 76+

    5% Don’t Know/ No response

    The question was not how old are you, the question was, in what year were you born. So with that question.

    Those demographics then are such.

    20% 59-91

    22% 49-58

    30% 34-48

    24% 18-33

    which follows well with the demographic information supplied here.  

    Age             Population Percent of total

    15 to 19 years 415,737 6.5

    20 to 24 years 404,279 6.4

    25 to 34 years 926,788 14.6

    35 to 44 years 1,062,995 16.7

    45 to 54 years 873,353 13.8

    55 to 59 years 310,002 4.9

    60 to 64 years 236,405 3.7

    65 to 74 years 427,830 6.7

    75 to 84 years 315,640 5.0

    85 years and over 116,692 1.8

    So Joe, the demographic numbers are right. You read the poll wrong.