Question 20, Gamba: Munoz claims that the Southwest Hopeville Neighbors Association
overwhelmingly opposes the new water system, citing this as evidence of citywide opposition.
The association did pass a resolution opposing the new water system, but only 25 of the 350
members voted, with 10 in favor of the system.
Furthermore, the 15 opposing votes represent far less than 1 percent of Hopeville's population.
One should not assume that so few votes represent the view of the majority of Hopeville's residents.
Clearly we have an argument here and our conclusion is the last sentence, "One should not assume
that so few votes represent the view of the majority of Hopeville's residents."
And how do we know that?
Well, while the association did pass a resolution, only 25 people voted on it and 15 opposed
15 is less than 1 percent of Hopeville's population, so Munoz shouldn't be citing this resolution
by the Southwest Hopeville Neighbors Association as evidence of citywide opposition.
Now that we have the argument clear, we move to the question stem.
Of the following, which one most accurately describes Gamba's strategy of argumentation?
Describe the strategy of argumentation that is a Method of Reasoning question so looking
for the answer choice that explains how Gamba arrives at his conclusion, that one should
not assume so few votes represent the view of the majority.
(A) questioning a conclusion based on the results of a vote, on the grounds that people
with certain views are more likely to vote.
If you notice that is not what Gamba does.
It doesn't say that these people are more likely to vote.
His issue is that there is such a small number of people opposing it when compared to the
entire Hopeville population.
So (A) does not apply.
(A) would be eliminated.
(B) questioning a claim supported by statistical data by arguing that statistical data can
be manipulated to support whatever view the interpreter wants to support.
Again, you notice that is not what Gamba is doing.
He's not arguing that statistical data can be manipulated to support whatever view the
Gamba's issue is that the number of people opposing it is such a small number in comparison
to Hopeville's population, so (B) is out.
(C) attempting to refute an argument by showing that, contrary to what has been claimed, the
truth of the premises does not guarantee the truth of the conclusion.
Again, you notice contrary to what has been claimed.
Munoz didn't claim that if it is in fact a case that the association overwhelmingly opposes
the new water system, that that guarantees that the city opposes it.
So (C) again does not apply to what we saw in our passage so (C) is eliminated.
(D) criticizing a view on the grounds that the view is based on evidence that is in principle
impossible to disconfirm.
Again, that is not Gamba's problem here.
It's not about being impossible to disconfirm.
So (D) again does not apply, which brings us process of elimination to (E), attempting
to cast doubt on a conclusion?again, the conclusion being evidence of citywide opposition?by
claiming that the statistical sample on which the conclusion is based is too small to be
Again, this statistical sample is the 15 opposing votes, which is less than 1 percent of Hopeville's
You notice (E) is exactly what we saw?that 15 votes is too small to be dependable.
We cannot say that this is evidence of citywide opposition so (E) would be the correct answer.