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Massachusetts Liberal

Observations on politics, the media and life in Massachusetts and beyond from the left side of the road.

Sunday, September 05, 2010

Which side are you on?

Little noted in the post-Earl holiday lull is a Boston Herald story yesterday that goes beyond "we report, you decide" straight to a partisan declaration.
Republican Charles D. Baker, surging in the latest poll, is bringing in the heavy artillery next month when maverick Arizona Sen. John McCain and underdog poster boy Sen. Scott Brown hit Boston to raise money for the GOP gubernatorial hopeful.
Surging in the latest poll?

Not even pollster Scott Rasmussen reached that conclusion in announcing that Baker has shaved yet another percentage point off Deval Patrick's lead,
The current figures are little changed from a month ago and the race remains rated as Leans Democrat in the Rasmussen Reports 2010 Gubernatorial Scoreboard.
At this pace, Baker past Patrick sometime around January.

The Herald's partisan spin no doubt has its roots in the declaration that when "leaners" are apportioned, the race tightens a bit more:
As a result, when leaners are included, the race at the top becomes even closer—Patrick 44% Baker 42%, and Cahill 8%. Leaners are those who initially indicate no preference for either of the candidates but answer a follow-up question and say they are leaning towards a particular candidate. The approach anticipates the fact that support for third party candidates typically declines as Election Day draws near. This is the first Election 2010 survey in Massachusetts to include leaners.
Seems to me the Herald is doing a lot of leaning on its own.

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2 Comments:

Anonymous Jack Gately said...

Massachusetts Liberal:

It is not Herald spin that the race changes when including leaners. That declaration comes from Scott Rasmussen, the nation's most respected pollster.

This is a tight race and getting tigher, just two points separate Patrick and Baker, Cahill is fading into the single digits.

Of course the Democratic incumbent will have an edge in the bluest of blue states. Scott Brown was down double digits three weeks out, at this pace it won't be January when Baker over takes Patrick it will be October 1st.

As Rasmussen stated, not the Herald:

"When leaners are included, the race at the top becomes even closer—Patrick 44% Baker 42%, and Cahill 8%. Leaners are those who initially indicate no preference for either of the candidates but answer a follow-up question and say they are leaning towards a particular candidate. The approach anticipates the fact that support for third party candidates typically declines as Election Day draws near. This is the first Election 2010 survey in Massachusetts to include leaners."

Jack Gately
jackgately.com

September 05, 2010 9:29 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Possibly, but Deval Patrick is not Martha Coakley when it comes to being a campaigner. There will be no "What should I do stand out there in the cold shaking hands" moments with the Patrick Campaign.

The Herald was not reporting, it was promoting. Accept it for what it was. Chances are, that anyone who reads the Herald is probably already in the Baker column, so the opportunity to sway voters is limited at best. What will be interesting to watch is the effect the current Baker campaign ads have on the numbers.

September 05, 2010 12:32 PM  

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