I just received word of a negative poll going out testing the candidates for U.S. Senate.
I heard about this through an elderly resident of Fairfax County, nearing her 90th birthday. This woman, a longtime Fairfax Democrat was savvy enough to keep asking, "Who is authorizing this poll?"
The pollster refused to respond each time. Finally at the end they said the poll was from the "Virginia Democratic Party".
Why would the Virginia Democratic Party be doing a negative poll on the Democratic candidates for U.S. Senate?
Obviously they wouldn't. So who was doing a poll on Wednesday night?
As I said before, my source is a political veteran, and is someone who knows what normally comes out from campaigns. Based on the questions asked, she believes it was the Harris Miller campaign doing the poll.
Questions need to be answered immediately. Did Harris have a poll in the field on Wednesday? If so, who instructed the operator to say the poll was from the Virginia Democratic Party?
It's also possible this poll did not come from Harris Miller, although my source was fairly confident that it did based on the questions.
Who else could be responsible?
Could it be DPVA? Doubtful they would even have the money for a live poll during a primary, even if they wanted to do it. I can say with 99% certainty they are not responsible for this.
Could it be the James Webb campaign? Highly unlikely because of the questions asked, but its always possible. (5:30 p.m.- Also see update below).
Could it be a 3rd party interest group? This is the next most likely to it being a Harris Miller poll, but I can not think of one that would be interested in polling right now.
The first step to resolving this issue is both campaigns confirming whether they had a poll in the field on Wednesday night. If the "Virginia Democratic Party" did not do this poll, then someone has broken the law by misrepresenting who they are with. Both campaigns should be immediately forthcoming on whether this poll was from them.
In the comments someone asked if this was a "Push Poll". A push poll goes to large numbers of people to "push" them to vote in certain ways. This was not a push poll because it does not seem to have gone out to a huge audience and its not close enough to the election for a "Push Poll".
This seems to be a regular poll, that is testing which issues should be used in future mail pieces, tv ads or, maybe even a real push poll.
5:30 p.m. Update- The Webb campaign says "We're not doing any polling at all at this time"
Hopefully the Miller campaign will also do us the courtesy of a quick reply.