We use cookies to provide some features and experiences in QOSHE

More information  .  Close
Aa Aa Aa
- A +

Polling is not evil voodoo magic

2 13 0

In his unsuccessful bid to unseat Sen. Ted Cruz last fall, Beto O’Rourke tried a variety of unorthodox campaign tactics. He live-streamed himself cooking a chicken in his kitchen. He was perfectly fine dropping profanity into public remarks. And he promised Texas voters that he would not hire a pollster to guide his campaign.

“My heart’s in it, I want to do this, I’m driven to do it. I’m not poll-testing it,” said O’Rourke in early 2017 as he launched his campaign. Though O’Rourke was not successful, the pledge to eschew polling lives on. Sen. Elizabeth Warren, having moved firmly into the top tier of Democratic presidential contenders, has also opted against hiring a pollster.

Why skip on the survey research? Polling, while not an inexpensive line-item, is usually far from a large portion of a campaign’s budget. Instead, the benefit of loudly and proudly going pollster-free is about the performance of authenticity. “I am not a focus-group tested, blow-dried candidate,” claimed New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie in the 2014 wake of the Bridgegate scandal, despite the fact that yes, Christie did in fact employ pollsters on his campaign. (I conduct focus groups a lot, and I can assure you, I’ve never seen a focus group........

© Washington Examiner