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Fake pollsters' scare tactics target Obama

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Fake pollsters' scare tactics target Obama

• Callers link candidate to Palestinian militants

• Jews and evangelicals are targeted in swing states

# Ewen MacAskill in Washington

# The Guardian,

# Friday October 3 2008

Barack Obama's campaign for the White House is receiving increasing complaints about scam pollsters involved in dirty tricks operations to discredit the Democratic candidate.

Victims claim the fake pollsters work insinuations into their questions, designed to damage Obama. Those targeted in swing states such as Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania include Jews, Christian evangelicals, Catholics and Latinos.

One of those to protest, Debbie Minden, who lives in a predominantly Jewish neighbourhood, Squirrel Hill, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, told the Guardian that the pollster had begun by asking her the usual questions about her background and who she would vote for.

But the pollster went on to ask Minden, who is Jewish, how she would vote if she knew that Obama was supported by Hamas, the Palestinian militant group that runs Gaza and was responsible for most of the suicide bombings against Israel. "It is scare tactics. It is terribly underhand," she said.

The groups behind such polls have not been identified. One of the Republican groups working on behalf of John McCain's campaign, the Republican Jewish Coalition, acknowledges carrying out a survey about Jewish voters' views on Obama and Israel, but insists it was a legitimate exercise intended to test campaign messages on Jewish voters.

The RJC angrily dismissed comparisons between its exercise and a "push poll", the technique of using fake surveys to sway voters. Its poll was restricted to 750 people whereas push polls usually involve phoning thousands of people. It asked 82 questions, only 10% of which were devoted to Obama.

The technique of push polling is part of the election battle being fought on the ground in the swing states where the margins of victory have been narrow in past elections.

On a bigger scale, teams from each campaign are engaged in legal fights over who is entitled to vote, with Republican groups trying to have people in largely Democratic neighbourhoods disqualified.

Push polling was used with stunning effect in the 2000 Republican primary campaign in South Carolina where people claiming to be pollsters insinuated that McCain, then fighting George Bush for the party nomination, had illegitimately fathered a black child.

Bush went on to overturn McCain's double-digit poll lead in the primaries, and the origin of the calls was never fully established.

This year, the tactic surfaced again during the Republican primaries when calls were made highlighting the religion of one of the candidates, Mitt Romney - he is a Mormon, a religion viewed with suspicion by some on the Christian right.

Full story, source: The Guardian

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During an interview on WABC radio Sunday, top Hamas political adviser Ahmed Yousef said the terrorist group supports Obama’s foreign policy vision.

“We don’t mind–actually we like Mr. Obama. We hope he will (win) the election and I do believe he is like John Kennedy, great man with great principle, and he has a vision to change America to make it in a position to lead the world community but not with domination and arrogance,” Yousef said in response to a question about the group’s willingness to meet with either of the Democratic presidential candidates.

source

Seems hamas does support Obama, in that they would prefer he be elected.

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Seems hamas does support Obama, in that they would prefer he be elected.

Are you making those calls?

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I guess if you cant win ethically or morally...you do whatever it takes...I couldnt do it, but he seems to have taken that route...

Keep in mind the people he hired to run his campaign...the same people bush used to tear him apart in 2000...so it isnt like he can be surprised by underhanded tactics(or would that be a strategy :P )

Its pretty bad when your campaign has to run on a series of politcal stunts, grandstanding, and outright lies in order to try and stay in the race. It is very sad to see a guy who once had so much honor fall so far. I used to really respect the guy and in 2000 would have loved to have seen him crush bush. Now he has sold his soul and will say and do anything to get the position...

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Posted (edited)

I used to really respect the guy and in 2000 would have loved to have seen him crush bush. Now he has sold his soul and will say and do anything to get the position...

And god help us all if he does (I know that a conservative like me should not say that...but...)

Edited by questionmark

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Seems hamas does support Obama, in that they would prefer he be elected.

Hamas is simply responding to their understanding of the Dem talking point。

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Are you making those calls?
I am

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The groups behind such polls have not been identified and are not legitimate polling outfits.

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You know what would be an even worse underhanded trick is if these fake pollsters worked for Obama.

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