Discrepancy between Exit Poll Figures and Final Vote Tally in U.S. Presidential Election

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Steve Freeman, a visiting scholar and affiliated faculty member of the Center for Organizational Dynamics at the University of Pennsylvania, is available to discuss the findings of his just-released report, "The Unexplained Exit Poll Discrepancy."

Through rigorous data collection, review and analysis, Dr. Freeman compared Election Day exit polls to final vote counts in the U.S. presidential election.  While exit polls indicated that Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry was ahead of President Bush in nearly every battleground state, the final vote tally resulted in a Bush victory.  

"As much as we can say in social science that something is impossible," Freeman said, "it is impossible that the discrepancies between predicted and actual vote counts in the three critical battleground states of Florida, Pennsylvania and Ohio could have been due to chance or random error."

Dr. Freeman wrote that the election's unexplained exit poll discrepancies make systematic fraud or mistablulation "a premature conclusion" but "an unavoidable hypothesis" that is the responsibility of the media, academics, polling agencies and the public to investigate.