Kirk Caldwell and puppy dog tails

25 Oct

There appears to be a “push poll” going on in town.

It’s aimed at mayoral candidate Kirk Caldwell, and while it starts off supportive of him, it quickly gets negative.

Politics 101 throws open the door.

Regular political polls are used to gauge public opinion.

It does it by asking people questions that are generic and don’t favor one side or another.

Generally 500 to 1,000 people are phoned or asked and they are designed to learn about and measure voters’ opinions and ballot choices.

A push poll is a different thing.

It’s a form of negative campaigning that is disguised as a political poll.

Push polls are actually political telemarketing — telephone calls disguised as research that are designed to persuade large numbers of voters and affect an election’s outcome.

The poll is not interested in your opinion.

Example, your phone rings and some sweet voice at the other end asks you questions like this: “Kirk Caldwell supports public safety, but did you know he has been accused by some of tying tin cans to puppy dog’s tails. Do you think this makes him a bad person?”

Nobody cares how you respond – the idea is plant in your head that Kirk Caldwell is a bad person.

And it works on some people.
Mission accomplished.

Push polls can also be Advocacy Calls.

They are made to people and are intended to create or change opinion.

They are like television or radio ads, except they are delivered over the telephone and they try to push positive or negative information to influence a voter’s final vote decision.

Both Push Polls and Advocacy Polls stink because neither is honest with you about what they are doing.

It’s just part of politics as usual – which is a terrible thing to say.

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