Friday, February 14, 2014

Pernicious Polling

The contempt in which media-types hold the citizens is amazing. Lexington Herald-Leader political writer Sam Youngman recently said in a piece of 11 February that Senator McConnell, though well-known, suffers from the fact that people don't like him, as proved by a 60% disapproval rating in the recently published Bluegrass Poll commissioned by the state's two largest newspapers and two TV stations. Youngman didn't mention that 66% of the people polled were registered democrats.

Do Youngman and the H-L actually believe people are so dumb that they can't see through this subterfuge? No geographic demographic was presented for the poll, i.e., statewide or local, so one presumes by its name that the poll was conducted in the Lexington/Louisville/Covington triangle, a democrat state within a state, so McConnell actually did quite well. Anyway, I strongly disapproved in my boot-camp days of the antics of my company commander, but I did not dislike him. Actually, he was kinda cool.

Youngman then launched into a recital of the reasons folks should like McConnell (his significant achievements) but actually didn't, therefore making him dead meat on the basis of a poll obviously rigged to suit the paper's agenda. Youngman then posited that since he's so disliked McConnell will be forced to go negative against Grimes, the presumptive democrat in November, and that this drives the numbers down with folks who don't approve of mudslinging (surprise, surprise), and that for McConnell the numbers can't get much lower anyway, apparently making him toast.

In the Bluegrass Poll, Grimes outdid McConnell by a few points, but Youngman said this: “For Grimes, who starts in a strong position, the danger is that she is largely unknown... .” That's a beautiful oxymoron. If she is so largely unknown, how did she get to be so dominating? Answer: People just hate McConnell so much that even an unknown orangutan could easily beat him.

According to the BG Poll, nearly half of registered voters had either no opinion or a neutral opinion of Grimes. Does this mean they'd never heard of her or had and just didn't care one way or the other? Youngman didn't explain but did say that this circumstance constitutes a “danger” for her and mentioned that McConnell “excels at defining his opponents negatively.” That will drive down his numbers, however, so Youngman can be relieved. Make that burnt toast.

On 13 February, Youngman explained—or let others explain in his behalf—that McConnell is responsible for Fed Judge John Heyburn II's District Court decision upholding the Supreme Court's decision allowing homosexuals to marry each other. The reason: McConnell recommended Heyburn to Bush 41, who nominated him to the judgeship. That makes McConnell the guilty party just like Obama blames Bush 43 for everything bad from bee-disease to the current recession and uninsured folks. What a stretch!

McConnell has always stood for traditional marriage so Youngman, in a surprising attack of honesty, quoted McConnell, who said, “I will continue to support traditional marriage and fight to make sure that Kentuckians define marriage as we see fit and never have a definition forced on us by interests outside of our state.” Youngman also mentioned that McConnell noted that 75% of Kentuckians voted for the constitutional amendment in 2004 banning same-sex marriage.

To make things even-up, Youngman mentioned that Grimes, in lock-step with the H-L, has supported same-sex marriage, noting that she and her husband, Andrew, have been married for seven years, presumably to each other, and quoting her, “I want to make sure all individuals have that same opportunity.” Don't all individuals already have that same opportunity—heterosexual marriage, or am I missing something here?

McConnell has Primary opposition from Matt Bevin, a Louisville businessman, whom Youngman quoted as saying “it was 'no surprise' McConnell was a part of Heyburn's assent to the federal bench.” Still laughing? Youngman mentioned that a Tea Party fund-raising group backing Bevin said in a news release that “a McConnell crony forces gay marriage on Kentucky.” Still laughing?

The questions on the virtually democrat-revered Bluegrass Poll have not been published, so one can only wonder how it was rigged. It may not have been, since 66% of the respondents were registered democrats registering 60% disapproval overall of old Mitch.

And so it goes.
Jim Clark

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