The first half of the year was fun
I’ve been gone for a while…not that you noticed.
I’m going to change that.
Speaking of polls…
I was waiting for the Day Two information leak and PDFs from the Texas Tribune on their new fake Internet poll, but I think they’ve said all they care to say.
So that means I have several questions about the hypothetical Perry vs. Abbott bout.
I tried to decipher the methodology document, but I think it’s written in Sanskrit, and it probably translates to “nothing to see here, you nosy asshole.”
It’d be easier to assume that the weighting system makes sense if they had included the all-important crosstabs, which always convey far more than the published numbers.
Alas, the pollsters have deemed us worthy of obscure toplines only. And what of them?
Despite Ross Ramsey’s headline, this is bad news for Team Perry. Jim Henson offers the most intriguing nugget about Abbott (consistent with what the PPP hippies claim):
“A lot of people don’t know who he is, but those who do are overwhelmingly positive”
Hmm. That sounds a lot like Ted Cruz about a year ago. But Abbott’s situation is nowhere near as dire as Cruz’s early showing.
- Abbott has a year til crunch time, and he’s already at 17% (allegedly) whereas Cruz was hovering around 5% for months.
- Perry’s start (and I would suggest that it is his ceiling) is considerably lower than Dewhurst’s was.
- Abbott has cash money. Dolla dolla bill, y’all. It wouldn’t be surprising to see Abbott outspend Perry 2 to 1. Cruz couldn’t raise squat—it was the Club for Growth that carried his paid media efforts against the well-self-funded Dewhurst.
- Word is that Abbott is already quietly assembling a commendable campaign team.
- Abbott will likely have a one-on-one contest with Perry to reach all constituencies. Cruz and Michael Williams were constantly trying to outflank each other on the ground for the same hyper-aggressive talkers in the conservative chattering class before Williams gave up.
However, we all know that Team Perry is accustomed to eating bad news for breakfast and pooping out political gold before lunch. This poll by the same outfit from approximately four years ago showed KBH 8 points up on Perry.
The difference may be that much of Perry’s team has disbanded or defected…or, in some cases, has been shown the door for unknown reasons. Enter disloyal mercenaries.
All this pontificating may be for naught. When you have red flags like only 15% of respondents being over 65 years old—and you don’t explain it—you may as well omit any margin of error disclaimer, because many will assume that it’s 100%. I guess that’s what happens when people are taking the poll in their underwear so that they can receive a Chili’s gift card.
Isn’t it worth asking?
I think it is. But first, I must satisfy my other personality—the mostly negative one…
The Texas Capitol Press Corps has my everlasting disdain. It’s a deplorable situation when the Texas Tribune is as close to “getting it” as they come…mostly disappointing because I think the average age in that office is thirteen.
Sometimes you have to hold a reporter’s hand and walk them through a story. That’s somewhat understandable. After all, there’s an entire industry of professionals (albeit an anemic industry in Texas) that is tasked with daily dissemination of information and, on occasions when reporters “bite,” thorough explanation.
But in Texas, that’s not enough. You must first teach the reporter to open their eyes, walk, talk, read, write, clothe themselves, go in the potty, don’t play in the street, and avoid touching hot stoves.
If it’s a record vote, you have to navigate them through a basic state website’s search functions.
If it’s a contribution or an expenditure, you have to install Adobe Reader for them or show them how to use Microsoft Excel.
If it’s an entity, you have to explain to them what the secretary of state’s office does. You might even have to spot them the $4 to make copies.
If they need to perform any sort of elementary research outside of Travis County, they simply give up and abandon their assignment or crusade.
If it’s the people at Politifact, you have to explain why “Greek" may still be accurate even though the word itself may be written in Times New Roman font…on a good day. Any staffer that gives them the time of day should be immediately fired. Any public official that reads or cites Politifact should resign in disgrace.
It’s fucking ridiculous. The Texas press gets its basic research from the same people that are spinning its members. Reporters either cannot use Google or are too lazy to bother.
Maybe that’s part of the reason Texas has a deficiency in good political communicators at the staff level. Why put up with that kind of nonsense?
Back to the question.
Rick Perry commissioned a poll, which was paid for in October, 2012. It’s in those ethics reports that reporters don’t report about.
That’s not news. Officeholders typically test messaging and priorities through pre-Session surveys, and the data tells them what they should do. Anyone who thinks that this process makes government into a charade needn’t ever visit this fake blog.
The news would be in the ballot test numbers. If you’re paying Baselice $40,000 for a poll, you include a ballot test—even if you’re NOT running for anything.
Now, there are no boxes in ethics reports that allow you to put a check next to anything along the lines of “Hey, dumbass reporter. Maybe you should ask the filer what this item was all about.”
But surely someone could ask what the Abbott vs. Perry numbers were.
This town has no secrets. Any question about that poll—even off the record—would be broadcast far and wide.
If Perry’s shop didn’t answer, reporters would be whispering that Perry’s poll wasn’t favorable.
If Perry’s shop did answer, reporters would be whispering that Perry’s running again.
Todd Staples needs more practice
You’ve heard of Susan Combs’ porn book, which has caused us all to involuntarily toss our cookies at some point.
Rick Perry has penned two books. Some former Romney advisers naively claim that one of them is, by itself, the reason Perry didn’t win the nomination in 2012.
Not to be left out, Todd Staples decided to buy some ink and raise his minimal profile before 2014 primary season bemuses us.
His literary debut is devoid of sexual encounters (unless “secure my border” is a new euphemism that my spouse has refused to share with me) and without social security rants.
Staples couldn’t find anyone to publish his musings, so he found one of those do-it-yourself companies on the Internet. In about six months, I hope some enterprising Texas reporter* will ask the Staples folks whether or not the costs—around $5k or so—were recovered through sales.
I’ll bet they answer the question as directly as Staples recently answered the in-state tuition for illegals question:
Todd Staples has consistently tried to make border security his signature issue. It’s a better sound bite than “hey I’m in charge of rural stuff and crops and such.”
But his folks somehow forgot to remind him that he voted for the in-state tuition bill, and he somehow forgot how to answer and/or pivot. This video oopsie, complete with an uncomfortable pause, suggests that Commissioner Staples needs some more practice.
Interestingly, the immigration issue…not to be confused with border security…may give David Dewhurst a chance to distance himself from Patterson and Staples in a potential race where not many disagreements can be found.
This random thought assumes that smut mogul Susan Combs seeks re-election.
* That’s my little joke. Texas doesn’t have enterprising reporters.
Censored No More
I have come to the conclusion that a coordinated attack on my blog took it down for some unspecified number of weeks. It was the drones launched by Obama. Everyone was in on it. From Beyonce down to Axelrod.
It’s the only explanation. I simply don’t buy the “you didn’t pay to renew your domain” lies from GoDaddy.