The AP mangles its Obama polling results

From the AP's Liz Sidoti [emphasis added]

President Barack Obama's winning coalition from 2008 has crumbled and his core backers are dispirited. It's now Republicans who stand to benefit from an electorate that's again craving change.

Nearly two years after putting Obama in the White House, one-quarter of those who voted for the Democrat are defecting to the GOP or considering voting against the party in power this fall.

The polling results are just horrific news for Obama, right? Well, if the results actually matched what Sidoti wrote up, the answer would be yes. But the results don't match her breathless reporting.

The poll consisted of re-interviewing more than 1,200 voters from 2008 and among other things, getting their opinion about Obama today. According to Sidoti's telling, the polls shows that Obama's supporters have abandoned him.

Except that, of course, they have not.

According to the AP's own results, 73 percent of Obama voters approve of the job he's doing as president, while 83 percent think he deserves to be re-elected. But at the AP that' qualifies as “dispirited” and signs of “disillusionment” and “pessimism”?

As for Sidoti's claim, placed very high up in the article, that one-in-four Obama voters are “defecting to the GOP”? That's just plain wrong. Asked specifically if they would vote for a Republican candidate in this year's midterm election, exactly seven percent of Obama voters said they would do that in November.

Sidoti appeared to have simply looked at the 76 percent who said they “will support the Democrat in their House district,” and decided the other 24 percent were going to vote Republican. But of those 24 percent, 13 percent told the AP they didn't know how they were going to vote in November.

And oh yeah, the poll comes with a margin of error of more than four points. Meaning it's possible that seven percent figure of Obama voters who are going to vote Republican in November is meaningless.