Saturday, September 11, 2004

Push Polling

Both literally and metaphorically.

First, the literal. The Milwaukee Journal-Sentiniel reports that the Moore Information Polling Group has been engaged in Push Polling for Bush. For those of you who don't know what that is, Push Polling is when the pollster asks a question that "pushes" the listener to support one side. For example, "Would you support John Kerry even though he kills puppies?" is a push question. A more subtle push question would be "Do you support Liberal Massachusetts Senator John Kerry for President?" This seeks to capitalize on many independent voters reflexive mistrust of the "liberal" label (and especially of the massachusetts sort!). Another push question (the one that allegedly was used by Moore) is "Whose position do you think is closer to the truth - those 'veterans who served with John Kerry' and say that he does not deserve the medals that he received, or John Kerry who disagrees with the veterans that he served with and who appear in the ad?"

Second, the metaphorical. Despite all the hysteria about Bush's rising national polling, on the state-by-state level Kerry is still hanging tough. The latest polls have him ahead in Colorado and Pennsylvania, states he was losing previously. He's also made up ground in Ohio, and Florida and Nevada are virtually tied. So maybe the media should hold off on claiming that Kerry is on the edge of death.

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