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Poll war: Rasmussen flicks off NBC's Chuck Todd

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Politics,Paul Bedard,Washington Secrets

It's good to be right--especially when caught in a fight about accuracy like the developing war over polling in this presidential election cycle and NBC White House Correspondent Chuck Todd's charge that Rasmussen Reports polling is "slop."

Pollster Scott Rasmussen waded into the fight Tuesday on Fox, calmly welcoming the competition from Todd's NBC/Wall Street Journal polling then lowering the hammer that his polling has been accurate longer in showing a tight race.

"We've been showing this race to be close for a long time. As other polls shift to likely voter models, they're showing the same thing. Four years ago, we showed virtually no change of the final 40 days of the campaign. We've shown a steady race this time. Both men have been within three points of each other 89 of the last 100 days and happy to compare our work to anybody's," he said.

Unlike other polling, Rasmussen has been polling likely voters, a more accurate way to predict Election Day results. What's more, his sampling includes closer numbers of Democrats, Republicans and Independents, instead of the heavied-up number of Democrats polls like NBC's uses.

Then there are the results. According to a Fordham University review, it was Rasmussen, not NBC/Wall Street Journal, that called the 2008 election correctly. While Rasmussen was first, Todd's poll ranked 13th.

Fordham's ranking:

1. Rasmussen (11/1-3)

1. Pew (10/29-11/1)

2. YouGov/Polimetrix (10/18-11/1)

3. Harris Interactive (10/20-27)

4. GWU (Lake/Tarrance) (11/2-3)

5. Diageo/Hotline (10/31-11/2)

5. ARG (10/25-27)*

6. CNN (10/30-11/1)

6. Ipsos/McClatchy (10/30-11/1)

7. DailyKos.com (D)/Research 2000 (11/1-3)

8. AP/Yahoo/KN (10/17-27)

9. Democracy Corps (D) (10/30-11/2)

10. FOX (11/1-2)

11. Economist/YouGov (10/25-27)

12. IBD/TIPP (11/1-3)

13. NBC/WSJ (11/1-2)

14. ABC/Post (10/30-11/2)

15. Marist College (11/3)

16. CBS (10/31-11/2)

17. Gallup (10/31-11/2)

18. Reuters/ C-SPAN/ Zogby (10/31-11/3)

19. CBS/Times (10/25-29)

20. Newsweek (10/22-23)