The Rural Patriot

September 29, 2006

Push Polls in NY-29?

Filed under: 2006 Campaigns,Randy Kuhl — theruralpatriot @ 11:15 am

I’ve been hearing reports that possible push polling is being performed in NY-29 for the benefit of the Kuhl campaign. The rochesterturning website currently has two posts available on the subject:

Just as I was saying the NY-29 race had stayed pretty clean so far, I’m getting unconfirmed reports that the Kuhl campaign is doing some “push polling”.

… If you don’t know what a push poll is, here’s what Wiki says about push polls:

A push poll is a political campaign technique in which an individual or organization attempts to influence or alter the view of respondents under the guise of conducting a poll…..True push polls tend to be very short, with only a handful of questions, so as to make as many calls as possible. Any data obtained (if used at all) is secondary in importance to negatively impacting the targeted candidate. Legitimate polls are often used by candidates to test potential messages. They generally ask about both positive and negative statements about all major candidates in an election and ask demographic information at the end.

They are calling for anyone who has received this type of polling phone call to let them know and to provide details of the call. I, too, would like to hear from you if you have received this type of phone call.

The questions are framed in a negative light against one particular candidate, such as “Would you vote for Candidate X if you knew that he/she supports (fill in the blank with something nasty, outrageous, etc…)?” This most likely is not Candidate X’s position on the issue, but that is not the point of a push poll. It is to plant negative seeds in the mind of the person answering the phone, not to collect the data that a normal type of phone poll produces.

Be aware if you receive this kind of call. This type of activity is negative campaigning at its finest. I’m not accusing the Kuhl campaign of participating in this; if it is happening in our area, there is a possibility that a third-party entity has stepped up and is doing it. We just don’t know. But we sure would like to find out, and we don’t want you to be fooled, either.



  1. If this can be proven, can’t someone–an outside PAC?–come up with the dollars necessary to ‘out’ this?

    Comment by olean gal — October 1, 2006 @ 12:03 am | Reply

  2. I would imagine that proving this could be difficult. It would take a number of people who had received this type of phone call to come forward and relay the details of the call they had received.

    That is specifically why we want to hear from you if you, or others that you know of, had received a call of this type.

    There is strength in numbers!

    Comment by theruralpatriot — October 1, 2006 @ 10:43 am | Reply

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