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Scott Walker Can’t Even Buy A Win In the Polls

Posted by Chris Liebenthal on March 14, 2010

A couple of days ago, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel ran a story about another poll that was conducted by WPRI (We Prop up Republican Ideologues). The polling allegedly found that TOMMY!!! “Stick it to ’em” Thompson was leading Russ Feingold, even though TOMMY!!! isn’t an announced candidate. (I’d personally be surprised if TOMMY!!! did run. This is more likely his scratching his four year itch for attention.)

The same story showed that Tom Barrett, even though he has been running for about one tenth the time of Scott Walker, is in a statistical tie:

In the governor’s race, Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker leads Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett 36% to 32%.The margin of error of the poll makes a Barrett-Walker race virtually even.

Now, a lot of people have already jumped all over these polls due to the fact that WPRI has a very poor reputation regarding their honesty or integrity in polling due to having been busted out by One Wisconsin Now for tweaking their data to get their desired results. Among those taking the poll on are:

  • Emily Mills, who wonders why the University of Wisconsin would damage their reputation by getting involved with these shady characters,
  • Trevor Miller, Russ Feingold’s Campaign Spokesperson,
  • Xoff, who raises some interesting points and questions, and
  • Zach Wisniewski, who cites Xoff’s piece and then goes on to point out the rogues’ gallery of shady characters, including one of my biggest fans, Charlie Sykes. (Also note Kevin Binversie’s intellectual contribution to the discussion [NSFW])

I am a little surprised that Walker and his team haven’t also called out WPRI for not being a credible source of information. After all, the results of the poll, which show Walker still ahead of Mark Neumann, also shows Neumann catching up to Walker, especially in the area of favorability:
And as I mentioned earlier in this post, Barrett and Walker are in a virtual tie.

It is not surprising that Walker is losing ground to both Neumann and Barrett. Neumann has been running TV ads around the state for weeks. Barrett has been in the news a lot for positive stories like bringing new companies, and with them, new jobs, to the Milwaukee area. And both Neumann and Barrett have been aided with the fact that there are almost daily reports of Milwaukee County suffering systematic failure due to the malfeasance of Walker’s reign.

What is surprising is that even with all those factors, the polling didn’t show Walker with huge leads over both Neumann and Barrett. After all, the polling was done by WPRI, which received $1.5 million dollars from the Bradley Foundation last year (pdf, page 25). And the Bradley Foundation is headed by Michael Grebe, who was appointed to be Walker’s campaign chairman the day after donating $5,000 dollars to Walker’s campaign.

If Walker’s campaign chair can’t even buy a favorable poll, it is a clear sign that Walker’s campaign is already in deep trouble.


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