When I received this yesterday my feeling was life is too short to read Baldwin's news releases, so I ignored it. After a difficult late Friday/early Saturday where we had a scare with our dog that resulted in my being at the vet at 2 AM, I was out enjoying the company of the aforementioned dog, a good lager and a fire in the backyard tonight when I started cleaning up my inbox via my smart phone.
That's when I inadvertently opened Baldwin's release. This is great stuff. You want to talk about the ultimate projection. Baldwin wants to distract from a perfectly credible pollster who is showing Tommy Thompson with a double digit lead by calling on him to release tax returns(clearly borrowing from the distractor in Chief), so she claims Thompson wants to distract from his taxes by focusing on a poll that shows him up by 11? This is hysterical. And wow, you want to talk about killing the messenger. After reading this you'd be ready to convict Scott Rasmussen for the Lindbergh kidnapping.
Clearly primary voters who chose someone behind Thompson have settled in firmly behind him. What, Baldwin didn't think this was going to happen? As for her shameful trashing of Rasmussen, Democratic Pollsters Patrick Caddell and Douglas Schoen leapt to his defense in a 2010 editorial piece in the Wall Streett Journal, which Baldwin must have missed:
Mr. Rasmussen, who is avowedly not part of the Beltway crowd in Washington, has been willing to take on issues like ethics and corruption in ways no other pollsters have been able to do. He was also one of the first pollsters to stress people's real fear of the growing size of government, the size of the deficit, and the concern about spending at a time when these issues were not really on Washington's radar screen.
The reaction against him has been strident and harsh. He's been called an adjunct of the Republican Party when in fact he has never worked for any political party. Nor has he consulted with any candidates seeking elective office.
The attacks on Rasmussen and Gallup follow an effort by the White House to wage war on Fox News and to brand it, as former White House Director of Communications Anita Dunn did, as "not a real news organization." The move backfired; in time, other news organizations rallied around Fox News. But the message was clear: criticize the White House at your peril.
With that in mind, here's Baldwin's drivel:
Facing Calls to Release His Tax Returns, Thompson Desperately Clings to Discredited Poll
Thompson Campaign Attempting to Distract From Thompson's Blow Up On The First Day of the General Election
MILWAUKEE – John Kraus, Tammy Baldwin For Senate Communications Director issued the following statement in response to the Thompson campaign's desperate attempt to discredited Republican poll to distract the media and voters from the fact that Tommy Thompson refuses to release his tax returns and supports cutting taxes for millionaires like himself while raising taxes on Wisconsin's middle class.
"In the face of calls to release his tax returns, and after a testy and rattled exchange with the Wisconsin press corps on the first day of the general elction, Tommy Thompson is trying to distract voters by clinging to a widely discredited pollster who used to work for George W. Bush," said Tammy Baldwin for Senate Communications Director John Kraus, "Thompson can try to dodge and distract all he wants but the people of Wisconsin want to know why Tommy won't release his tax returns at the same time he is calling for tax breaks for millionaires like himself and tax increases for the middle class."
RASMUSSEN REPORTS: REPUBLICAN AND WRONG
NRSC ED Rob Jesmer: "You'd Have To Be High To Make Decisions" Based on Rasmussen Polls. In June 2011, Roll Call reported: "You'd have to be high to make decisions based on either of those firms," Jesmer said, referring to PPP and Rasmussen." [Roll Call, 6/29/11]
Rasmussen Polled for George W. Bush. According to the Center for Public Integrity, Scott Rasmussen, Inc. received $45,500 from George W. Bush in 2004. The payments were for "Survey Research." [Center for Public Integrity, accessed1/15/10]
RNC Paid Rasmussen Nearly $100,000 for Polling. The RNC paid Rasmussen $95,500 between 2003 and 2004 for items listed as "survey," "survey cost" and "voter data." [Center for Public Integrity]
Rasmussen Took a National Review-Sponsored Cruise With Karl Rove. In 2010, Rasmussen took a cruise with Karl Rove and other conservative pundits just after the November elections. The cruise was hosted by the National Review and went to a private island, the Bahamas and Cozumel, Mexico. [Journal Sentinel, 6/23/10]
Rasmussen Got His Start Thanks to Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly. In the mid-1990s, Rasmussen had discovered the business model of automated polling, and folks he polled heard a recording of his wife reading poll questions. In 1998, heavy traffic crashed his site when Rush Limbaugh unexpectedly told listeners to visit. Two years later, in August 2000, Bill O'Reilly invited him onto his show. He wrote columns for the conservative site WorldNetDaily in 2000. [Washington Post,6/17/10]
Rasmussen Wrote a Book Advocating Privatization of Social Security. In 2001, he wrote a book advocating the privatization of Social Security. [Washington Post, 6/17/10]
Rasmussen Misleads on His Independence. Reported Politico, "While Scott Rasmussen, the firm's president, contends that he has no ax to grind — his bio notes that he has been "an independent pollster for more than a decade" and "has never been a campaign pollster or consultant for candidates seeking office."" [Politico, 1/2/10]
Nate Silver: Rasmussen Reports – Polling For Itself and for Fox – Exhibited a Considerable Bias Towards Republicans. "On Tuesday, polls conducted by the firm Rasmussen Reports — which released more than 100 surveys in the final three weeks of the campaign, including some commissioned under a subsidiary on behalf of Fox News — badly missed the margin in many states, and also exhibited a considerable bias toward Republican candidates." [New York Times, 11/04/10]
Rasmussen Overestimated the Standing of Republicans by Almost Four Points on Average. "Moreover, Rasmussen's polls were quite biased, overestimating the standing of the Republican candidate by almost 4 points on average. In just 12 cases, Rasmussen's polls overestimated the margin for the Democrat by 3 or more points. But it did so for the Republican candidate in 55 cases — that is, in more than half of the polls that it issued." [New York Times, 11/04/10]