For those of you keeping score at home, I’m now being attacked for about the 4th time in the past three days by one of my primary opponents who promised to not attack me.
As usual, these attacks are false. If you are really interested in the truth, you can read on. But a lot of this is insider baseball political stuff, so you may want to just get back to work.
Don is now claiming that I was behind an illegal push poll. By definition – from both Clean Elections and the National Council on Public Polls — push polls occur late in the campaign and spread false information about a candidate to a widespread audience. They are designed not to gather information but to spread rumors and “push” people away from voting for a candidate.
Last week, we were the victims of an illegal push poll, where the callers refused to identify what polling firm they worked for because they weren’t doing legitimate polling. It was late in the campaign, and thousands of people got calls alleging that I had an illegitimate child and that I said God caused 9-11. Both messages were false, but the story got picked up and carried in every newspaper in the state, accomplishing its nefarious purpose. As a result, we got some additional funding from Clean Elections, but not nearly enough to make up for the damage that was done. And we still don’t know which of my opponents was behind this.
By contrast, a legitimate poll goes to a small sample of voters and is conducted by a legitimate polling firm which identifies itself. (The campaign is not identified because to do so skews the objectivity of results.) Voters are surveyed on who they are supporting right then, and how they react to certain truthful messages about candidates. In early August, before early balloting had begun, our campaign paid a legitimate polling firm for exactly those purposes.
The poll went to a grand total of 253 people and we paid less than $2,000 for it. It asked people who they were supporting right then, tested the response of voters to truthful messages about Don, and also tested the affect of an endorsement from Sen. McCain.
The poll was not widespread, going to fewer than 1/100 of 1 percent of voters. Because it was so tiny, no one in the media even noticed and there were no news stories. It did not spread any false information. It included questions unrelated to my opponent. It happened before voting began. And the information we gained was used in our campaign. The expenditure was duly and legally reported.
By every definition, it was not a push poll.
The Goldwater campaign is either unable or unwilling to understand the difference between a legitimate poll to a
small sample of voters early in a campaign, compared to the last-minute, illegal and sleazy attack calls we were victimized by.
To equate the two is laughable, but just an example of the kind of nonsense we are dealing with in these last few days.
In our campaign, we have focused the vast majority of our time and resources explaining my background and policy experience, and contrasting my views with those of Janet Napolitano.
In the primary, we have sent three messages about Don Goldwater — that his last job was Special Events Coordinator for Janet Napolitano, that he was always pro-choice until running for Governor, and that he accused President Bush of selling out America. All three messages are truthful, and relate to Don’s credibility and experience on issues.
The Goldwater campaign may not like it, but all three of those things are true and Republican voters are entitled to know them before they vote.
I have spent decades building a reputation for integrity. It is disappointing to see people so desperate to win an election that they are willing to trash someone’s reputation with ridiculous attacks. I expected it from the Democrats, but not from a fellow Republican.
No matter who wins Tuesday, I remain committed to helping the Republican nominee win the general election against Janet Napolitano.