Tuesday, May 13, 2008

PUSHING THE POLLS

Push- polling. Now there's a fun little political sport.

"Would you vote for George Papoon if you knew he liked to stomp on little baby ducks while he raises your taxes?"

Push-polls are telephone calls designed not to determine statistics about voter opinion but to spread negative information about a candidate in the form of questions.

"Would you vote for George Leroy Tirebiter if you knew that he shot a man in Reno just to watch him die?

The first push-poll of the season has been spotted in New Mexico according to a fund-raising e-mail from Tom Udall’s Senate campaign. Apparently it's from a national conservative group that emphasizes right-to-life issues.
REP. TOM UDALL
“We’ve just received some disturbing news from one of our staff — the GOP ‘Swift Boat’ attacks on Tom Udall have begun here in New Mexico. She got an automated ‘push-poll’ phone call from an organization misleadingly calling itself ‘Common Sense Issues’ this weekend,” said the e-mail from Amanda Cooper, Udall’s stepdaughter and campaign manager.

Cooper couldn’t be reached for comment about details of the poll Monday.

Representatives of CSI couldn’t be reached for comment Monday night at the phone number listed on its Web site. So if the report is true, we still don't know what information was being passed in the phone calls or how true or false it was.

A Jan. 9 story in Newsweek said, “Common Sense Issues is a tax-exempt group registered in Delaware whose organizers have acknowledged the use of controversial telephone polling tactics to promote (Mike) Huckabee presidential bid — and allegedly to trash the campaigns of the former Arkansas governor’s rivals.” Huckabee’s campaign denied any connection with the group.
Common Sense Issues’ Web site lists “life issues” as its top priority. Among other issues listed are liberty, economics, national security, “natural family” and “confronting radical Islam.”

Udall is running unopposed in the Democratic Senate primary. Republicans Heather Wilson and Steve Pearce are duking it out in the Republican primary.

If you didn't get a call from this push poll, don't worry. There's bound to be more in the general election.

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