Yesterday Richard Moore's campaign manager, Jay Reiff, sent out an e-mail to supporters touting the results of a new poll by the Benenson Strategy Group. According to the poll Perdue leads Moore 34% to 30%. The mass email and polling memo make note that Moore actually leads Perdue 48% to 33% among voters "who know both candidates."
Reiff did not feel the need to mention in his e-mail that Benenson is the campaign's paid pollster. And as WUNC's Laura Leslie pointed out last night, "although Benensen is one of the better internal pollsters out there, no one gets rich by delivering strictly dismal data. Knowing how to find a silver lining in the numbers is, well, worth a lot of silver."
Reiff also used part of the e-mail to take some thinly veiled shots at the accuracy of polling companies, including PPP, that have delivered less favorable numbers for Moore's chances.
For instance he said "How was the poll conducted? Many public polls are automated, computer-generated polls done on the cheap. Our pollster uses live callers to make sure were interviewing actual voters."
It has been written numerous times on this blog how bogus this line of attack against IVR surveys is. But I will repeat it, there is absolutely no evidence that IVR surveys are less accurate than live-interview surveys and we will put our track record up against anybody.
In fact the Moore campaign has been happy to tout our numbers when the results were more favorable to them.
Reiff also devoted a significant chunk of his e-mail to criticizing Civitas' methodology. We don't agree with the way they do their polls for primaries either because they don't survey exclusively likely primary voters, but Reiff's criticism is ironic considering just two weeks ago he sent out an e-mail to supporters hailing the results of a Civitas poll as a sign that the race is 'wide open.'
I'm pretty sure Jay Reiff wouldn't be taking shots at our methodology if his candidate was doing a little better.
You can say what you want about us, but whenever we do a poll on the gubernatorial race we tell you exactly what we asked and give you full crosstabs. I would challenge the Moore campaign to do the same thing before sending out selective poll numbers and criticizing the way we do business.