Democrat-Touted Pharos Poll Now Shows 2 Point Berg Lead


Desperate for positive polling numbers in North Dakota’s Senate race, Democrats have been touting some very sketchy polling conducted by North Dakota-based Pharos Research. There are a lot of very good reasons not to take the polling seriously, as I’ve written before.

But Democrats have cited it as it showed a lead for Heitkamp.

For what it’s worth, Steve Leuchtman (who is one of the partners behind Pharos) told me in an email today that their polling now shows Berg with a 2-point lead.

Here’s what he sent me:

FWIW, unreliable though we may be (and as I conceded to you, we spent several weeks finding our range), final poll, concluded yesterday, Berg 49-47.

The last polling posted on the Pharos website, which concluded October 28th, showed Heitkamp with a 2-point lead. Meaning this poll shows a 4-point swing to Berg in the closing days of the campaign.

To the extent that Pharos is reliable polling that is, and I don’t think it’s very reliable at all. But Democrats cited Pharos as reliable so, for what it’s worth, those are the latest numbers.

Update: Here’s the report:

ND Pharos Poll

Rob Port is the editor of In 2011 he was a finalist for the Watch Dog of the Year from the Sam Adams Alliance and winner of the Americans For Prosperity Award for Online Excellence. In 2013 the Washington Post named SAB one of the nation's top state-based political blogs, and named Rob one of the state's best political reporters.

Related posts

  • The Whistler

    Berg wins by 8.

    • Rob

      I think his victory won’t be any less than 5. More than 10 would surprise me.

      • dakotacyr

        REally, is that your final answer?

        • tomorrowclear

          Rob has been a remarkably reliable prognosticator this season in that you could observe his predictions, bet on the opposite, and make some good money. After I give he and the idiot brigade a couple days to grieve, I’m going to ask him about a few of the football games this weekend.

          BTW, do you think Rob will apologize for siding with the wrong polls while attacking the ones that turned out to be accurate?

          • borborygmi

            Shocker: Vote shows Polls can be wrong. Rob responds “OOps my bad”

  • Jay

    Two words, Rob: pollster credibility.

    • Rob

      I know, I’m not touting this. I’m just pointing out the latest result since Democrats decided to use the results.

      I’m sticking with Berg by at least five

      • leuchtman

        Still, Rob, the polling is looking pretty good across the board now, isn’t it? At least from a results point of view.

    • leuchtman

      What do you think about the credibility this morning Jay?

      Let’s take a look at the 10/26-10/28 poll against results:

      President: Romney +17 Result R+20

      Senate: Heitkamp +2 Result D+1

      House: Cramer +14 Result R+13

      Governor Dalrymple +29 Result R+29

      MOE +/- 3.5%

      I’d say that’s pretty damned credible. Can I get you to concede that I know what I’m doing on the polling side, even if the website looks like it was thrown together and we were late to the game?

      • Jay

        I think you did a great job. Congratulations, and godspeed in future endeavors.

        • leuchtman

          Thank you. By the way, I want to make a small point.

          While Rob was skeptical about the polling, and made some valid points, our offline conversations were very cordial, and he never made it personal. All a person can ask for is a fair hearing, and I feel like we got one at his blog.

  • Jay

    For the record, I stand by my statement yesterday that Berg wins 54-46.

    • borborygmi

      Please remind me not to let you handicap any horse races or figure the odd on a ball game

  • dfm

    I realize this is a North Dakota focus, but one thing that HH did was help elect as least 1 Democratic senator, and maybe herself to boot. Why?

    Simple, by being competitive, she forced the GOP and groups like GPS to spend millions in a seat that by all accounts should have been red. By expanding the map, she helped remove New Mexico as a potential R pick-up (the Rs had a good candidate), since not enough resources for both states. And the Ds did not have to protect their.

    New Mexico is a done deal, North Dakota is not.

    • Rob

      Maybe, but ND is a very cheap media market. How much money did she really pull away from other races? DSCC did less than 3 million in outside spending. That’s a lot in ND. Not so much in other states.

  • dfm

    I’m going to go with Berg, about 52.3 to 47.7% … although I do think HH could surprise.

  • badlands4

    Am I missing something the rest of you are seeing? I have been following the race on the ND Voices site and with 71.13 of the votes in, Heidi Heitkamp at 51.66 and Berg at 47.86.

    I was trying to find out if there is a way to see which counties have already voted. I want to see if Cass county has voted yet.

    • badlands4

      Andwith the race this close could there be a recount? There are only two counties that haven’t been counted yet(based on the map I just looked at), which means one could pull away, but it could also tighten up. Is it half or one percent that triggers an automatic recount? What a mess if that happens.

  • dakotacyr

    It’s so very quiet here tonight. Did something happen?

    • tomorrowclear

      In fits of frustration, the resident idiot brigade went out to shoot a mockingbird.

      When they get back, they’ve vowed to hold their breaths until they pass out or Obama is impeached.