In the simplest possible terms, NBC seems to be suffering from a rather acute bout of schizophrenia when it comes to assessing the race for the GOP nomination.
If was just 2 days ago that NBC, in conjunction with Survey Monkey, released the results of a national poll which showed that Donald Trump was a 20 point national favorite among registered Republicans going into the South Carolina primary.
The same poll showed Trump holding a commanding 9 point lead in the race to secure the white evangelical vote.
Either there’s been a dramatic change in voter sentiment in the past 48 hours or we just learned that polls - and perhaps NBC polls especially - are completely worthless, because NBC now says Ted Cruz has a 2 point lead over the brazen billionaire.
“Support for Donald Trump among Republicans has declined in the past month, leaving him slightly behind Sen. Ted Cruz in the GOP presidential race,” WSJ - which co-sponsored the poll - writes, adding that “Mr. Trump had enjoyed a double-digit lead over his rivals, but the new poll found support for him falling by seven percentage points since mid-January.”
As you can see from the graphic shown above, once the field narrows to two candidates, Marco Rubio is the overwhelming favorite to win the nomination and Trump finishes a distant fourth.
WSJ and NBC readily admit that their results are completley at odds with virtually every other poll anyone has conducted heading into Super Tuesday.
"The new survey marks the first time since the fall that the Journal/NBC News poll has found anyone other than Mr. Trump in the lead among Republicans nationally, and it differs from other recent national surveys that show him holding a steady lead," WSJ goes on to say. "For example, a new Reuters/Ipsos poll, also released Wednesday, shows Mr. Trump with a lead of more than 20 points nationally. That means the Journal/NBC survey could reflect a shift in mood, a temporary blip or a finding outside the mainstream."
So basically, WSJ and NBC have no idea what the results mean.
"When you see a number this different, it means you might be right on top of a shift in the campaign,” Bill McInturff, a GOP pollster who conducted the survey with Democratic pollster Fred Yang said.
Right. Or it could mean you have no idea what you're talking about.
NBC/WJS working the 'poll' like a bad stripper - geesh pic.twitter.com/OeECnLP9Zz— DanRiehl (@DanRiehl) February 18, 2016