South Carolina is legendary for dirty politics and push polling specifically. Now a mysterious group called SSI Polling is doing one of the most blatant push polls you’ll ever see in the race between Elizabeth Colbert-Busch and Mark Sanford. Here are some of the questions:
- “What would you think of Elizabeth Colbert Busch if I told you she had had an abortion?”
- “What would you think of Elizabeth Colbert Busch if I told you a judge held her in contempt of court at her divorce proceedings?
- “What would you think of Elizabeth Colbert Busch if she had done jail time?”
- “What would you think of Elizabeth Colbert Busch if I told you she was caught running up a charge account bill?”
This is how push polling is done, you call and ask hypothetical questions like this. You don’t actually say that she had an abortion or had done jail time, you just ask how they would feel if she had. And you plant a seed in their minds that these things actually happened when they didn’t. The most famous example is from 2000, when the Bush campaign did a push poll in this same state asking how they would feel if they knew that John McCain had a biracial daughter (he has an adopted daughter who was born in Bangladesh, who was a little girl at the time). It’s disgusting.
Like Dispatches on Facebook: