Washington Post admits polling was “in-kind contribution”; New York Times agenda polling.
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Reagan Far from Goal in New York; Carter in Lead
Why was this so? Why was Reagan doing so badly in New York? The paper turned to a Carter campaign aide in the state who explained that New Yorkers aren’t “willing to vote for a Goldwater.” Then they found one “frustrated Republican county chairman” who said the problem with Reagan was that New Yorkers “don’t like what they think they know about him.” Then there was the usual yada-yada: Reagan was failing miserably with women (losing 41-23 said the poll) and losing in New York City, not to mention that “labor is hard at work” for Carter.
What happened? Reagan beat Carter in New York by over 2 points.
• Michigan: The last of the profiles in the Times “Crucial States” series was Michigan, published on October 23. The ambiguous headline:
Party Defections May Tip Scales in Michigan Vote
The Michigan story begins with the tale of Reagan being endorsed by Dr. Martin Luther King’s famous aide the Reverend Ralph Abernathy. But the Times immediately saw a problem in this backing of Reagan from a prominent “black civil rights leader.” The problem? Black backlash. Said the paper:
Mr. Reagan was barely out of town [Detroit] before the backlash set in.
“The Abernathy Betrayal,” screamed the headline over the chief article in The Michigan Chronicle, a black newspaper. And yesterday the 400-member Council of Black Pastors, in the greater Detroit area, broke its precedent of refraining from Presidential endorsements and declared its support for President Carter a direct reaction to the Abernathy endorsement.
In other words, Reagan was damned because he didn’t get black support — and damned especially when he did. Grudgingly, the paper admitted that “although the race was close” in Michigan, “Mr. Reagan was ahead.” But once again, the Times insisted that a key state race was close. Close, you see, close. Did they mention it was close?
What happened? Reagan carried Michigan by over 6 points, 48.999 to Carter’s 42.50. Yet again — it wasn’t close.
That same day, October 23, the paper ran a second polling story on the general status of the presidential election, its theme self-evident:
Poll Shows President Has Pulled To Even Position With Reagan.
The story by Times reporter Hedrick Smith began this way:
In an election campaign reminiscent of the tight, seesaw contest of 1960, President Carter has pulled to an essentially even position with Ronald Reagan over the last month by attracting some wavering Democrats and gaining on his rival among independents, according to a new nationwide survey by The New York Times and CBS News.
The survey, readers were assured, was “weighted to project a probable electorate” and had Carter leading Reagan 39-38.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?