What Do the Polls Mean?

John ArmstrongPolitics

Would someone please explain why we have polls on the upcoming election that say Obama's lead is as high as 13% while two very reliable polls, released in the last 24 hours, that say his lead is 1%? (A statistical dead heat!) Is this wide range of numbers as odd to you as it is to me? I am not into conspiracy theories, as I have said numerous times, but something seems amiss when the range is so vast. And why do we have so many poll anyway? What purpose do they really serve? Every one of them is based on various bits of data directly rooted in the questions that are being asked and when they are being asked. None can say who will finally vote.

Does anyone remember that the polls in 2004 said that John Kerry was up by 10% in most of the battleground states only to have him loose these states and the nation, 51% to 48%. I am not an expert on polling but I do know that these numbers are so widely divergent that I would still not be totally surprised if they are proved wrong. The race seems very volatile right now. Remember, they all say that there is a 2.5 to 3% variation. If this is true then the race is much closer than many are leading us to believe. I do not know the answer to this question so I ask anyone who has a credible response or a serious thought: What do these polls really mean right now?